Dynamic Earth: A New Zealand Perspective

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Dynamic Earth: A New Zealand Perspective

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study

    Geography, Geology, New Zealand Culture

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    Volcanoes, earthquakes and related hazards; crystals, minerals; igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic processes; geological structures and geological maps; earth resources; New Zealand’s geological evolution.

    This paper explores the dynamic processes that shape planet Earth. A broad overview of plate tectonics, Earth structure and natural hazards is followed by lectures on rocks and minerals, resources and the geological history of Zealandia. Throughout the paper, emphasis is placed on examples from New Zealand. Complementary lab classes allow students to develop a range of essential practical skills. Fieldtrips are used to explore local geology and reinforce concepts from lectures and labs. This paper complements EAOS 111 and is essential for entry into Geology 200-level core courses.

    Course Structure
    The course consists of lectures, laboratories and fieldtrips. Lectures cover four key themes:
    -Geological relationships
    -Earth materials and rock types
    -Earth resources and hazards
    -Earth history and geology of New Zealand

    Laboratories focus on the development of essential practical skills in Geology.

    Learning Outcomes
    Upon completion of GEOL 112 students will:

    • Understand and apply fundamental geological principles to a range of problems
    • Understand the fundamental principles of the geosciences
    • Understand the impact of the geosciences in a global and societal context
    • Have developed knowledge of a diversity of subjects that form core topics in the geosciences
    • Have developed knowledge of the geological and tectonic history of New Zealand
    • Be able to analyse and integrate diverse geological datasets
    • Be able to identify and classify basic geological materials, including rocks, minerals, fossils, structures and landforms
    • Be able to interpret and create topographic and geological maps at a proficient level
    • Be able to perform basic types of geological analysis
    • Have an understanding of the principles of geological fieldwork and how fieldwork is carried out

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.