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GEOL471 Advanced Topics in Geophysics 2

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Practical and conceptual approaches on the use of rock- and paleo-magnetism in stratigraphic, chronostratigraphic, environmental, volcanic, structural and tectonic studies.

Paper title Advanced Topics in Geophysics 2
Paper code GEOL471
Subject Geology
EFTS 0.0833
Points 10 points
Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $673.90
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $2,981.97

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GEOL 431

This paper is suitable for someone with a BSc (or equivalent) in a physical science.


Teaching staff

Coordinator: Dr Christian Ohneiser
Associate Professor Andrew Gorman

Paper Structure
  • Introduction 1 - The origins of the geomagnetic field
  • Introduction 2 - Remanence
  • Introduction 3 - Magnetic mineralogy
  • Introduction 4 - Laboratory and field techniques
  • The geomagnetic polarity timescale
  • Magnetostratigraphy
  • Secular variations
  • Relative paleointensity and the next generation magnetic timescale
  • Environmental magnetism
  • Magnetic fabrics and paleoceanography
  • Paleomagnetic techniques for volcanology
  • Magnetic fabrics and rock deformation
  • Paleomagnetic studies and structural geology

This paper will draw on the book 'PALEOMAGNETISM: Magnetic Domains to Geologic Terranes' By Robert F. Butler, which is available for download from

Graduate Attributes Emphasised

Global perspective, Communication, Critical thinking, Environmental literacy, Research, Self-motivation.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.

Learning Outcomes
  • Understanding how the field of rock and paleomagnetism has developed and been applied to a number of complex geological problems and contemporary topics. This will include an understanding of the advantages and limitations of paleomagnetic methods over other geological and geophysical techniques. (Graduate Profile Attributes: Scholarship, Research, Interdisciplinary perspective, Global perspective, Environmental literacy, Ethics, Lifelong learning and Critical thinking)
  • The ability to acquire and critically evaluate rock and paleomagnetism datasets and research material. (Graduate Profile Attributes: Scholarship, Research, Interdisciplinary perspective, Critical thinking, Information literacy, Communication, Self-motivation and Teamwork)
  • Development of independent and group skills for communicating geophysical research in small group and more formal (seminar presentation) settings. This will include the ability to prepare for and produce coherent written and oral presentations and arguments about the methods and datasets that they present. They will challenge conventional assumptions and consider different options and viewpoints when discussing results. Students will develop an appreciation for flexibility, adaptability and creativity in seismic research. (Graduate Profile Attributes: Scholarship, Research, Interdisciplinary perspective, Critical thinking, Communication, Self-motivation, Lifelong learning and Teamwork)

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Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system