Dangerous Earth

Subject 625-203 (2008)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2008.Search for this in the current handbookSearch for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.500
Level: Undergraduate
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2008:

Semester 2, - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 24 lectures (two per week), 24 hours of practical work (two hours per week), some of which may be replaced by computer-based assignments conducted by students in their own time
Total Time Commitment: 120 hours
Prerequisites: At least one of Earth sciences 625-101, 625-102, 625-103 or 600-201 is recommended.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements: It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study and reasonable steps will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact upon their active and safe participation in a subject are encouraged to discuss this with the relevant subject coordinator and the Disability Liaison Unit.


Professor A J W Gleadow
Subject Overview:

This subject provides an introduction to the study of natural hazards on the Earth on various spatial and temporal scales. It will cover hazards of geological and meteorological origin, as well as major catastrophes such as those produced by extraterrestrial impact and climate change. Topics will include:

  • earthquakes and their consequences;

  • tsunamis in the ocean basins;

  • volcanoes and volcanic activity;

  • land instability and mass movements;

  • floods, drought and fire;

  • thunderstorms and tornadoes;

  • tropical cyclones;

  • extraterrestrial impacts and mass extinction;

  • climate change and its implications for human populations;

  • managing and reducing the risks from natural hazards.

At the end of this subject, students will have acquired a detailed understanding of the nature and causes of natural hazards, be informed of the linkages between these, know the potential effects of various kinds of natural disasters for human populations and activities, and have an appreciation of what can be done to manage and minimise the dangers posed by natural environmental hazards.

Assessment: Practical assignments totalling up to 3000 words due during semester (40%); a 2-hour written examination in the examination period (60%).
Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options: This subject is a level 2 or level 3 subject and is not available to new generation degree students as a breadth option in 2008.
This subject or an equivalent will be available as breadth in the future.
Breadth subjects are currently being developed and these existing subject details can be used as guide to the type of options that might be available.
2009 subjects to be offered as breadth will be finalised before re-enrolment for 2009 starts in early October.
Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Notes: Students enrolled in the BSc (pre-2008 BSc), BASc or a combined BSc course will receive science credit for the completion of this subject.

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