GEOLOGY 3500 - Exploration Methods III
North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2014
General Course Information
Course Code GEOLOGY 3500 Course Exploration Methods III Coordinating Unit School of Earth and Environmental Sciences Term Semester 1 Level Undergraduate Location/s North Terrace Campus Units 3 Contact Up to 7 hours per week, plus field trip Incompatible GEOLOGY 3017 and GEOLOGY 3018 Course Description This course will introduce a series of geological, geochemical and geophysical techniques that can be applied to determine the physical and chemical characteristics of the Earth's lithosphere, with direct application to the detection and mapping of mineral and energy resources in three dimensions.
We will take a generic view, that economic concentrations of mineral and energy resources are geological anomalies that are defined by extreme localised enrichments (of specific elements, minerals, liquids, gases or heat) and are recognisable by steep gradients in a range of measurable geological, geophysical and geochemical properties.
The course will be divided into modules covering exploration techniques commonly used in minerals and energy exploration, both geophysical (gravity, magnetic, electrical, electro-magnetic and seismic surveys) and geochemical (rock, regolith and hydrologic sampling techniques and analytical methods). We will examine the theoretical basis of each technique, the methods of data collection, presentation and analysis, and appropriate, geologically constrained, interpretation of the data.
The course will include 2 * 1 day field trips, during which the students will collect a range of geophysical data and geochemical samples over an exploration target in the Adelaide Hills. These data will be processed, analysed and interpreted during practicals. Specific details of the field trips will be communicated at start of the course.
Course Coordinator: Dr Graham Heinson
The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.
Course Learning OutcomesThis course aims to introduce students to the techniques used to measure and map geologic,
geophysical and geochemical characteristics of the lithosphere, with applications to mineral and energy exploration.
It also aims to provide students with the theoretical background to each technique (including its strengths and limitations), the methods of data collection, analysis and interpretation and an appreciation of the exploration scenarios in which each technique may apply.
The anticipated knowledge, skills and/or attitude to be developed by the student are:
Demonstrated knowledge of:
1 The scientific basis of mineral and resource exploration 2 Exploration methodology in practice 3 The generic characteristics of economic mineral and energy resources –
geological, geophysical and geochemical anomalism
4 The geophysical techniques (seismic, gravity, magnetic, electrical and
5 The geochemical techniques (sampling media, sampling strategies,
6 Field based data collection – sampling strategies 7 Demonstrated understanding of the importance of data quality –
collection, analysis, processes techniques
8 Ability to write a scientific report
University Graduate Attributes
This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:
University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s) Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1,2,3,4,5,7 The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 2,6,7,8 An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 2,6,7,8 Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 2,6 A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 3,4,5,6,7 A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 8 A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 8 An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 1
Recommended ResourcesThe following will be provided: lecture notes handouts, practical notes handouts,
Field Exercise Guide
Introduction to mineral exploration (Moon, Whateley and Evans), 2nd Ed, 2006, Blackwell Publishing
An introduction to geophysical exploration (Kearey, Brooks and Hill), 3rd Ed, 2002, Blackwell
Online LearningAdditional course-related material is available through MyUni We use it
often. Students should regularly check the MyUni website for important course-related announcements. Teaching materials, field trip info, reminders and course documentation will also be posted on this site.
Learning & Teaching Activities
Learning & Teaching ModesThis course comprises:
Two lectures of 1 hour each per week
One practical of 4 hours per week
Two days field data acquisition timetabled during lecture/prac days
The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.Lecture
2 hours of lecture and 1 hour preparation
4 hours practical work most weeks
1 hour per week extra reading time and completing some practical exercises for assessment
Scheduled during lecture, practical sessions
3 hours per week extra reading and report writing from fieldwork
TOTAL HRS PER WEEK
Up to 6 contact hours
Up to 6 non-contact hours
Learning Activities Summary
Schedule Week 1 The science and practice of mineral and energy exploration week 2 No Lectures (Adelaide Cup) Week 3 Geochemical techniques- Analytical techniques Week 4 Geochemical techniques- Analytical techniques Week 5 Field exercise – geophysical data collection Week 6 Geophysical techniques
Week 7 Geophysical techniques Gravity Week 8 Geophysical techniques Magnetics Week 9 Geophysical techniques Electrical Week 10 Geophysical techniques Electromagnetsim Week 11 Geophysical techniques Seismic acquisition and processing Week 12 Integration and Interpretation of multiple datasets
Specific Course RequirementsThis course includes 2 x 1-day field work to an exploration site in Adelaide Hills.
The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:
- Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
- Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
- Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
- Assessment must maintain academic standards.
Assessment Task Task Type Percentage of total assessment for grading purposes Hurdle
Outcomes being assessed/achieved Due date Weekly tests
(8 x 5%)
Summative & Formative
No 1,2,3,4,5 Field trip report Summative & Formative 20% No 4,5,6,7,9 Week 12 Exam Summative 40% Yes
1,2,3,4,5,6,7 Exam period
Assessment Related RequirementsTo pass this course student must attain at least 50% in the exam. The exam is redeemable.
Assessment DetailWeekly Tests (8, each worth 5%):
A weekly test (on the previous weeks materials) will be given at the start of each lab class, and will be worth 5% of the years marks. .
Field based practical exercises and report (20%):
This assessment covers 2 days of field based data acquisition and practicals which will cover geochemical survey planning, geophysical data processing, presentation and interpretation and integration of multiple datasets collected by the students at the field site. The weekly activities will be compiled and summarised as an exploration report to be handed up subsequent to the Week 12 practical.
The exam is intended as a measure of summative knowledge of the course material. A hurdle is set by which students have to achieve a pass for this item.
If an extension is not applied for, or not granted then a penalty for late submission will apply. A penalty of 10% of the value of the assignment for each calendar day that the assignment is late (i.e. weekends count as 2 days), up to a maximum of 50% of the available marks will be applied. This means that an assignment that is 5 days late or more without an approved extension can only receive a maximum of 50% of the marks available for that assignment.
Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:
M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme) Grade Mark Description FNS Fail No Submission F 1-49 Fail P 50-64 Pass C 65-74 Credit D 75-84 Distinction HD 85-100 High Distinction CN Continuing NFE No Formal Examination RP Result Pending
Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.
Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.
Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.
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