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undergraduate study guide                                                                                         Keele University

 Further information                                   Popular Subject Combination
 Contact: Earth Sciences and Geography,                Geology can be read alongside a wide variety of science and
 School of Physical and Geographical Sciences,         non-science subjects here at Keele. Popular combinations in
 Keele University, Staffordshire ST5 5BG               recent years have included Physical Geography, Applied
 Tel: 01782 733615                                     Environmental Science and Astrophysics. Additionally, the
                                                       School of Physical and Geographical Sciences runs a three
 Email:                                year Single Honours course in Geoscience that provides a
 Web:         modern approach to the study of Planet Earth: its structure,
                                                       composition, processes, history, and its mineral and energy
 Annual intake: approximately 50
 Teaching hours per week: approximately 10 in
                                                                                                              Teaching and Assessment
                                                        Course Features                                       Each module in Geology comprises a
                                                                                                              minimum of 20 lectures plus 10 three-hour
                                                          Broad-based introduction to Earth Science          practical sessions. Assessments take place at
                                                          No previous knowledge of Geology                   least once per module and consist of a
                                                             required                                         practical test and/or a laboratory project.
                                                                                                              Module exams at the end of each semester
                                                          Choice of degree pathways                          examine the more theoretical aspects of the
                                                                                                              course. Fieldwork is assessed by marked
                                                          Wide range of career options
                                                                                                              practical projects, reports and an individual
                                                          Development of field, laboratory and               research dissertation submitted in thesis form.
                                                             information technology skills                    Each student is assigned to a personal tutor
                                                                                                              who will hold tutorials and will also be of
                                                          Fully-integrated fieldwork programme               assistance for any problems with coursework.
                                                             including overseas fieldcourse
                                                          Modern laboratories with dedicated
                                                             audiovisual facilities                             Career Opportunities
                                                                                                               In addition to the specific geological skills
                                                          Modern computing facilities running                 acquired on the course, training is also given
                                                             specialist Earth Science software
Introduction                                                                                                   in information technology, report writing in a
Ever thought of studying Geology? The School of           Lecture courses fully integrated with               range of styles, and oral presentation. The
Physical and Geographical Sciences at Keele is                                                                 nature of geology promotes logical, deductive
                                                             applied practical sessions and fieldwork
active in both teaching and research enabling                                                                  reasoning and problem-solving skills that are
us to keep our courses up-to-date with the latest         Opportunities for independent study                 valued by employers. Keele Geology
ideas in the field. We offer four separate degree            through research projects and mapping             graduates have an excellent track record of
courses in Geology, which cater for the various              exercises                                         gaining varied and stimulating employment
requirements of our students.                                                                                  positions. For example, recent graduates
                                                          Strong commitment to dynamic and                    have begun successful careers in geological
      Three-year Dual Honours degree
                                                             supportive high-quality teaching                  survey       institutions,     environmental
      Three-year Major degree
      Three-year Single Honours degree in                                                                     companies, water and land management
                                                          All courses accredited by the Geological
         Geoscience                                                                                            companies, the oil and gas industry and the
                                                             Society of London
      Four-year MGeoscience                                                                                   extractive industry. Other students have
Geology is a fascinating subject that investigates                                                             progressed to vocationally orientated
how the Earth was formed, how life arose and                                                                   postgraduate courses or have undertaken
evolved, why the Earth looks like it does today,                                                               PhD research. Graduates in Geology who
                                                                                                               take either Major or Dual Honours are eligible
what resources it contains and how we can find
                                                                                                               for fellowship of the Geological Society of
them. Geology draws on knowledge from many
                                                                                                               London. The Geoscience and MGeoscience
different aspects of science such as chemistry,
                                                                                                               courses are the appropriate pathway for
biology, and physics as well as other subjects such
                                                                                                               those seeking Chartered Geologist (C.Geol)
as physical and human geography, environmental
                                                                                                               and European Geologist (EurGeol) status.
studies and economics. As such geology is the
ideal subject to choose as part of a Dual Honours
degree programme. It will teach you many transfer-     Opportunities for Overseas
able skills that are valuable for everyday work not    Study
only in geology, but also in many fields of employ-    Students who wish to undertake fieldwork overseas
ment after you graduate.                               are encouraged to do so. Additionally, those who
We constantly update and improve the course            are interested in exchanges as part of the
choices available to you, and because our teaching     University’s Study Abroad programme are
staff are also active research scientists, we ensure   encouraged to spend a semester during year 2 at
that our modules, particularly at third year level,    one of our overseas partner institutions in Iceland,
reflect the latest thinking within the discipline.     the USA, Canada, and many other destinations.
Course Structure
During your first two years at Keele you will study four Geology modules in each year. You can register for                                        “I chose Geology despite
either a three-year BSc Dual Honours degree, a three-year Major BSc degree, a three year Single Honours                                            knowing little about the
BSc degree in Geoscience or a four year MGeoscience degree route. Each course follows a similar pathway
for the first two years before specialising later in the programme.                                                                                subject before arriving at
                                                                                                                                                   Keele; it sounded interesting
 First Year Modules                                                        Third Year Modules                                                      and I liked the idea of outdoor
                                                                                                                                                   fieldwork. I have absolutely
 Planet Earth: This module introduces the Earth                            In the third year there are two compulsory modules
 as a planet, geological processes such as plate                           linked to your field-based project and then you
                                                                                                                                                   no regrets, the lectures are
 tectonics and how these processes relate to                               choose a selection of specialized option modules                        really interesting and we get
 geological features such as volcanoes,                                    from the following list. The number and exact choice                    plenty of opportunity to put
 earthquakes and tsunamis.                                                 of modules undertaken depends on the degree
                                                                           course that you have opted to take (see later).                         theory into practice both in
 Rocks, Minerals and Fossils: This module
 provides an introduction to common rock forming
                                                                           Advanced Geophysics: This module covers the use                         the lab and in the field.”
                                                                           of geophysical methods for shallow exploration and
 minerals, igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic
                                                                           archaeological/ geotechnical/environmental site
 rocks in hand specimen, and the major fossil
                                                                           Advanced Sedimentology: sequence stratigraphy                           Student Life
 Time and Space: A module that provides an                                 and the role of eustatic and tectonic controls on
 introduction to Earth time and Earth history, as                          sedimentary successions. Application of                                 Our students run their own ‘GeoSociety’ and
 well as introducing geological structures and the                         sedimentology for oil and gas exploration.                              each year arrange entertaining guest
 interpretation of geological maps.                                        Structure and Geodynamics: explains the concepts,                       lectures, informal field excursions and
 Rocks - Up Close: This module develops an                                 processes and physical structures associated with                       numerous campus-based social events. This
 understanding of the formation and classification                         continental tectonics.                                                  lively atmosphere ensures that for many
                                                                           Natural Hazards: the geological considerations                          students the geology course provides a truly
 of different rock types by examining them up close
                                                                           relating to earthquakes, volcanoes, landslides and                      memorable learning experience.
 using a petrological microscope.
                                                                           waste disposal; how such phenomena are monitored
 Fieldwork in the first year includes a one-day field                      and the impact they have on human life.
 course to study the geology of the Ercall Quarries,                       Glaciers and Glacial Geomorphology: A module
                                                                                                                                                   BSc Dual Honours
 Shropshire, a one day excursion based on the                              that explores the characteristics and behaviour of                      Students opting to study for the Dual Honours
 palaeontology and sedimentology of Wenlock                                glaciers, their role as a part of the environment and                   BSc degree take the compulsory independent
 Edge, a one-week residential field course based in                        importance to human activity.                                           field project (double-module) and two option
 Pembrokeshire, South Wales, and a three-day                               Global Environmental Change: A module that                              modules in their final year, alongside modules
 field course in Llangollen, North Wales.                                  enables students to appreciate the relationships                        from their second subject.
                                                                           between global environmental change and the
                                                                           characteristics of the Earth's surface processes and                    BSc Major Route
 Second Year Modules
                                                                           landscapes.                                                             Students opting to study for the BSc Major degree
                                                                           Hydrological and Engineering Geology - This                             study a second subject alongside Geology in
 Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology: explores
                                                                           module provides a practical understanding of                            years 1 and 2 before taking the compulsory
 the origin, development, age dating and magma
                                                                           groundwater and rock/material behaviour.                                independent field project (double-module), an
 sources of igneous rocks and how initial rock
                                                                           Magmatic and Volcanic Processes: This module                            advanced fieldcourse and five Geology option
 c o m p o s i t i o n s, f l u i d m i g r a t i o n a n d va r y i n g                                                                           modules in their final year.
                                                                           ex a m i n e s m a g m a t i c a n d vo l c a n i c p r o c e s s e s
 temperatures dictate the mineral assemblages
                                                                           operating during magma ascent and storage in crustal
 found in metamorphic rocks.
                                                                           reservoirs, volcanic eruption and injection of volcanic                 BSc Single Honours Geoscience
 Structural Geology and Solid Earth                                        ash and gases into the atmosphere (includes field                       T h i s n ew d e g r e e p r o g r a m m e i nvo l ve s t h e
 Geophysics: A module that provides an                                     course to southern Italy).                                              integrated study of geology, geophysics and
 understanding of the main processes of                                    Micropalaeontology: This module involves the study                      geochemistry. It is based on a Single Honours
 defor mation in rocks and explains how                                    of major microfossil groups, their palaeogeographical,                  structure and is mainly designed for those students
 geophysical techniques can be used to provide                             palaeoecological and biostratigraphical potential. An                   who wish to focus on geoscience topics for the
 insights into the deep interior of the Earth.                             introduction to state-of-the art electron microscopic                   three years of their undergraduate degree studies,
                                                                           techniques is included within this course.                              as opposed to studying two subjects under the
 Advanced Fieldwork Skills: Field techniques are                           Coastal Environments: This module aims to provide                       Dual Honours degree scheme. More information is
 studied during residential courses in Snowdonia,                          students with a detailed understanding of coastal                       provided in a separate course leaflet.
 North Wales and Almeria, SE Spain. Careers                                processes and landforms, and an appreciation of the
 preparation is also covered as part of this module.                       links between for m and process in coastal                              MGeoscience
                                                                           environments over a range of spatial and temporal                       MGeoscience at Keele is a four-year Single
 Reconstructing Sedimentary Environments: A                                scales.                                                                 Honours degree course for those students
 module that explores how sedimentar y                                     Water Resources: A module that provides an                              considering a specialist career in ear th
 environments such as rivers, lakes and shorelines                         understanding of hydrological and hydrogeological                       sciences. Geoscience is the term used for a
 become preserved in the rock record and what                              processes essential to an appreciation of water                         wide range of subjects that investigate the
 techniques can be used for their reconstruction?                          resource issues as well as an understanding and                         physical Earth including geology, geochemistry,
                                                                           appreciation of the problems surrounding water                          geophysics and physical geography.
 D u r i n g t h e E a s t e r a n d s u m m e r va c a t i o n s,
                                                                           resources and its management.                                           MGeoscience is taken as a single subject from
 students attend field classes. These currently run
                                                                           Four th Year Modules (MGeoscience only) -                               the third year. Students in their third year take
 to mainland Europe and North Wales, and will
                                                                           M.Geoscience students take the following modules in                     the compulsor y independent field project
 prepare you for independent fieldwork. Also during
                                                                           addition to level M versions of the year 3 option                       (double-module), an advanced field course,
 the summer vacation, you will carry out a three
                                                                           modules listed above:                                                   plus a choice of five option modules. In the
 week field-based project that provides the basis
                                                                               • Programming Skills for Earth Scientists                           fourth year, the compulsory modules are a
 for your dissertation. In recent years our students
                                                                               • Research Project                                                  research project, spatial geoscience data
 have mapped in Spain and Canada.
                                                                               • Literature Synthesis                                              analysis and a literature synthesis. In addition,
                                                                               • Spatial Geoscience Data Analysis                                  a further three option modules are taken.

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