Module OSX-3025:
Marine Geology & Applications

Module Facts

Run by School of Ocean Sciences

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 1

Organiser: Dr Margot Saher

Overall aims and purpose

The aims of this module are to provide: an understanding of the most prominent techniques used to reconstruct the history of the ocean; an understanding of the range of ways in which humans extract energy or material resources from the oceans; explanations of the physical and geological processes that must be understood in order to effectively and safely extract energy or material resources from the oceans; and finally, practice in communicating information on the topics covered as part of the module.

In these ways, students will gain an appreciation of the application of geoscientific understanding and knowledge to real-world scenarios.

Course content

This module provides insight into practical applications of marine geology. This is provided through a combination of baseline lectures by SOS marine geoscience staff as well as a series of guest lectures by specialists in the field. The baseline lectures will introduce the main underpinning physical and geological processes that need to be understood before that knowledge can be applied. The guest lectures will assume such understanding and will illustrate applications from their working experience. Key themes may include: climate reconstruction, carbon storage in marine sediments, oil and gas exploration, marine engineering (pipelines, communication cables, etc.), renewable energy, aggregate extraction, and seabed stability. These themes incorporate a variety of disciplines: palaeoclimatology, sedimentary geology, structural geology, process sedimentology, geotechnics, and geophysics.

The knowledge gained in this part of the module will then be applied in two ways: firstly, as a practical exercise in which you are presented with proxy data with which you perform a palaeoenvironmental reconstruction. Secondly, you will pick a topic of interest to you from within the module syllabus, and prepare and deliver a presentation to your peers.

Assessment Criteria

excellent

70% / A- Demonstrating an excellent understanding of the methods used in palaeoclimatology, and an excellent ability to integrate varied datasets of marine geological and other related data into a coherent narrative. Demonstrating an excellent grasp of the applications of marine geology and their base in physical processes, and excellent skills communicating these to an audience of peers.

threshold

40% / D- Demonstrating a basic understanding of the methods used in palaeoclimatology, and a basic ability to integrate varied datasets of marine geological and other related data into a coherent narrative. Demonstrating a basic grasp of the applications of marine geology and their base in physical processes, and basic skills communicating these to an audience of peers.

good

55% / C: Demonstrating a good understanding of the methods used in palaeoclimatology, and a good ability to integrate varied datasets of marine geological and other related data into a coherent narrative. Demonstrating a good grasp of the applications of marine geology and their base in physical processes, and good skills communicating these to an audience of peers.

Learning outcomes

  1. On successful completion of this module, a student will be able to explain how offshore developments and resource exploitation are linked to the physical processes that create and have created them.

  2. On succesful completion of this module, a student will have demonstrated an understanding of the major techniques used in palaeoceanography, and be able to critically analyse their application and their limitations.

  3. On succesful completion of this module, a student will be able to integrate a range of complex datasets in order to reconstruct ocean history

  4. On succesful completion of this module, a student will have demonstrated an ability to communicate an advanced topic within palaeoclimatology or applied marine geology, both clearly and effectively, to an audience of peers

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
REPORT Palaeoenvironmental reconstruction

The assignment will give the students a data set, which they will, in concrete steps, work up to a palaeo-environmental reconstruction. The individual steps will be marked; this will be clearly indicated on the assignment description. If a step that leads directly to the following step is not done well, the next step will be judged on the basis of how well it has been done given the information the student was working with.

20
EXAM Exam

The exam will consist of 6 short answer questions (10 mins each) and 2 long answer questions (30 mins each)

50
GROUP PRESENTATION Group Presentation

The students will pick one a topic inspired by the lectures given and develop a presentation about it. The length depends on the number of students in the group. The mark will be based on: delivery 10%, slides 20%, content 50%, timing 10% and answers to questions 10%. The students are expected to ask their peers questions; if they don't sufficiently engage they will be docked up to 10% (this will be communicated clearly beforehand). Additionally; the students will get a form in which they can indicate if all students in the group have made an equal effort. If they indicate the contrary, the individual students will be interviewed and, if deemed necessary, a weighting of the grades will be performed.

30

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Hours
Private study

It is expected that the student will require to manage their time in approximately this framework: On-going lecture review:46 Seminar research and preparation: 32 hours (c. 4 days) Independent research project research and preparation: 40 (c. 5 days) Exam revision: 51 (c. 6 days)

169
Seminar

Seminars (1 full day organised as a Conference) Students pick a topic and prepare and deliver a presentation on it

8
Lecture

Lectures, by both SOS staff and external speakers; 9 by SOS staff, and 6 remotely by guest lecturers. 2 X 1hr lecture per week (+ 1 wk with 1). (Time: 30 min prep/revision for every lecture included)

23

Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting

Subject specific skills

These have been extracted from the Subject Benchmark Statements of the QAA for Subject Specific Skills in Earth and Environmental Science. Only ones specific to this module are quoted:

Intellectual skills (knowledge and understanding)

Students will be expected to have shown:

knowledge and understanding of subject-specific theories, paradigms, concepts and principles

an ability to integrate evidence from a range of sources to test findings and hypotheses

an ability to consider issues from a range of interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary perspectives

an ability to analyse, synthesise, summarise and critically evaluate information

an ability to define complex problems and to develop and evaluate possible solutions

a critical approach to academic literature, data and other sources of information.

Practical skills

Students will be expected to have shown an ability to:

interpret and evaluate practical results in a logical manner

plan, conduct and present an independent project with appropriate guidance

prepare, manipulate and interpret data using appropriate techniques

use appropriate numerical and statistical techniques

use appropriate technologies in addressing problems effectively.

Communication skills

Students will be expected to have shown:

an ability to communicate effectively to a variety of audiences using a range of formats

good interpersonal communication skills to enable effective team working

an ability to argue a case in an effective manner.

Personal and professional skills

Students will be expected to have shown an ability to:

work effectively as a team member

recognise and respect the views of others

develop the skills for autonomous learning

display an appreciation of developing their graduate skills relevant to career pathways.

Resources

Resource implications for students

None

Reading list

The Talis reading list for the to-be-replaced module, OSX-3012 will be used and expanded.

Pre- and Co-requisite Modules

Courses including this module