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GEOL362 Geochemistry

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Principles of geochemistry applied to geologic and environmental processes; origin and distribution of the elements, mineral-water reactions, stable and radiogenic isotopes, global biogeochemical cycles.

Students will gain knowledge of geochemistry both from a theoretical and practical standpoint.  Field trips and laboratory work will allow them to gain familiarity with analytical geochemical methods.  At the same time they will learn aspects of the theoretical basis for the interpretation and critical assessment of geochemical data.

Paper title Geochemistry
Paper code GEOL362
Subject Geology
EFTS 0.15
Points 18 points
Teaching period Not offered in 2021, expected to be offered in 2022 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,092.15
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $5,004.75

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GEOL 251 and GEOL 252
GEOL 262
Schedule C

Background requirements: Basic knowledge of elementary mathematics and chemistry. GEOL262 is for students in their second year of a geology or equivalent degree. GEOL362 is for students in their third year of a geology or equivalent degree.

Teaching staff

Coordinator: Dr Candace Martin
Dr Chris Moy
Dr Mike Palin
Dr Christina Riesselman

Paper Structure

The course is divided into four modules, covering the theory and both high and low temperature applications of:

  • water-mineral reactions
  • trace element distributions
  • stable isotopes
  • radioactive and radiogenic isotopes

A unifying theme of the course is the topic of global biogeochemical cycles. Implications for economic mineralisation will also be considered.

Assessment is approximately an even split between internal (ongoing during the semester) and external (final exam).

Assessments for GEOL362 are set and graded differently to GEOL262 to reflect greater background knowledge and higher expectations of students taking the paper at 300-level.

Teaching Arrangements

Two lectures and one 3-hour laboratory per week.

Fieldwork: Several trips for sample collection will take place during lab time.

Highly recommended: Gill, Robin. Chemical Fundamentals of Geology and Environmental Geoscience, 3rd Edition. Wiley Blackwell.
Course outline

GEOL_262-362_syllabus_2018_draft.pdf  (latest syllabus indicative of content next time the paper is taught)

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Environmental literacy, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Students will be introduced to the principles of geochemistry as applied to geologic and environmental processes.

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Not offered in 2021, expected to be offered in 2022

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system