NS5303: Ice Age Earth

NS5303: Ice Age Earth

Please note this module descriptor is indicative of the structure of this course and may be subject to change.

Module Title Ice Age Earth
Module Code NS5303
Module Tutor Phillip Toms
School School of Natural and Social Sciences
CAT Points 15
Level of Study 5
Brief Description

This module aims to outline the causes, consequences and evidence for climate change over the past 2.58 Ma. This interval has encompassed 95% of all hominin evolution, observed lengthy icehouse conditions interspersed with brief returns to greenhouse conditions and provides the best analogue for natureā€˜s role in contemporary climate change. It builds on the theme of Environmental Change introduced in NS4302 Earth Systems & Processes and provides useful preparation for NS6302 Climate Change.

Indicative Syllabus

Global cooling in the Cenozoic Era

Astronomical and internal forcing of climate change

Glacial and interglacial geographies of the Quaternary Period

Field and laboratory measures of environmental change

Quaternary dating methods

Integrated field and laboratory environmental reconstruction exercise

Learning Outcomes

A student passing this module should be able to:

1. Demonstrate awareness of the external and internal mechanisms postulated to govern climate change

2. Display detailed knowledge of competing geographies posited for Quaternary environmental change

3. Demonstrate detailed knowledge of the utility of a range of palaeoenvironmental proxies and dating techniques

4. Acquire, analyse, synthesise and contextualise palaeoenvironmental and chronological data for the purposes of reconstruction

5. Act with limited supervision and direction, with a well-developed intellectual and practical independence to study and work

Learning and Teaching Activities Scheduled Contact Hours: 36
Independent Learning Hours: 114
Assessment (For further details see the Module Guide) 001: 100% Assignment: Individual: 3000 words or equivalent
Special Assessment Requirements
Indicative Resources The current reading list can be found in the Module Guide, which your lecturer should make available via Moodle.

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