This is the gateway unit of study for Human Geography, Physical Geography, Environmental Studies and Geology. Its objective is to introduce the big questions relating to the origins and current state of the planet: climate change, environment, landscape formation, and the growth of the human population. During the semester you will be introduced to knowledge, theories and debates about how the world's physical and human systems operate. The first module investigates the evolution of the planet through geological time, with a focus on major Earth systems such as plate tectonics and mantle convection and their interaction with the atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere and human civilisations. The second module presents Earth as an evolving and dynamic planet, investigating global environmental change, addressing climate variability and human impacts on the natural environment and the rate at which these changes occur and how they have the potential to dramatically affect the way we live. Finally, the third module, focuses on human-induced challenges to Earth's future. This part of the unit critically analyses the relationships between people and their environments, with central consideration to debates on population change, resource use and the policy contexts of climate change mitigation and adaptation.
One 2 hour lecture and one 2 hour practical per week.
Exam (40%), 2000 word essay (25%), practical reports (15%), presentation (20%)
GEOS1901 or GEOG1001 or GEOG1002 or GEOL1001 or GEOL1002 or GEOL1902 or ENSY1001