GEOL240-18S1 (C) Semester One 2018

Field Studies A - Mapping

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 19 February 2018
End Date: Sunday, 24 June 2018
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Friday, 2 March 2018
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Friday, 18 May 2018


Geological mapping involves the observation, recording, presentation and interpretation of field data, all fundamental skills required by practising geologists. Students enrolling in GEOL240 will complete laboratory classes and prepare a geologic map, cross-section, and written report for the Island Hills area of North Canterbury based on field data collected on a fieldtrip held during semester break.

Geological mapping involves the observation, recording, presentation and interpretation of field data, all fundamental skills required by practising geologists. Students enrolling in GEOL240 will prepare a geologic map, cross-section, and written report for the Tekoa area of North Canterbury based on field data collected during a 5-day fieldtrip held during semester break. A single day fieldtrip held over a weekend in the first term will introduce the fundamental field skills needed for the fieldtrip, while labs over both terms will introduce students to geological map reading and interpretation skills.  

Specific field trip dates will vary from year-to-year pending enrolments and the UC Calendar.  Assessment in GEOL240 is based on lab and initial fieldtrip participation (10%), two geological mapping exercises (60%) and a laboratory examination (30%).

Learning Outcomes

  • Goal of the Course
    The primary goal of GEOL240 is to provide students with training in basic geological mapping and map reading techniques and procedures.

    Learning Outcomes
    Students successfully completing this course will:
  • Be able to observe, record and interpret a variety of geological phenomena in the field.
  • Be able to systematically record outcrop data, measure basic structural and stratigraphic information.
  • Be competent to carry out independent mapping and/or field data recording in igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary terrain.
  • Be able to use aerial photography and contour maps as an aid to field mapping.
  • Be able to interpret history and extract geological information from geological maps.
  • Have gained experience orienteering using a map and compass.

    Summary of the Course Content
    The topics coved by this course are:
  • Orienteering in the Field
  • Strike & Dip Measurement
  • Geological Map Reading
  • Geological Map Preparation
  • Geological Cross-Section Preparation
  • Interpretation of Geological Field Data
  • Interpretation of Geological Maps
    • University Graduate Attributes

      This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

      Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

      Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.

      Employable, innovative and enterprising

      Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.


(1) GEOL111, and (2) GEOL113 or GEOL115


15 points from any of GEOL242-246 offered in the same semester

Timetable Note

There are no lecture classes for GEOL240,

1 lab (1 hour) per week – schedule to be advised

Provisional timetable:
Week #  -  Week starting  -  Lecturer (1hour)  -  Laboratory – held in Ernest Rutherford, room 221  -  Field Trips

9  -  19th Feb  -  No Lab
10  -  27th Feb  -  No Lab
11  -  6th March  -  KP  -  Intro to course
12  -  13th March  -  KP  -  Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps
13  -  20th March  -  KP  -  Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps  -  Both one day trips:
Weekend of 24th/ 25th March
15  -  3th April  -  No Lab
10th-30th April  -  Field trips - 3 streams, each 6 days (departing on 4th, 9th, and 14th April )
23rd April  -  No Lab
19  -  1st May  -  KP  -  Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps
20  -  8th May  -  KP  -  Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps
21  -  15th May  -  KP  -  Lab exam (2.5 hrs)
22  -  22nd May  -  No Lab
23  -  29th May  -  No Lab

Course Coordinator

Kate Pedley


Assessment Due Date Percentage  Description
Laboratory assessment 5% Laboratory hand in Labs 1-5
Initial Fieldtrip Participation 5% Initial Fieldtrip Participation
Mapping 10% Mapping - one day mapping exercise
5-day mapping exercise 50% 5-day mapping exercise
Laboratory examination 30% Laboratory examination

Lab hand in for labs 1-5  -  5%
Initial fieldtrip participation  -  5%
Exercise #1 – One-day mapping exercise  -  10%
Exercise #2 – Five-day mapping exercise  -  50%
Laboratory Examination  -  30%

Examination and Formal Tests
Laboratory Examination:  Held in laboratory session of the week of the 14th-18th May
There is no final exam for this paper

Textbooks / Resources

Recommended Reading

Barnes, J. W.1921- , Lisle, Richard J; Basic geological mapping /John W. Barnes, with Richard J. Lisle ; 4th ed; Wiley, 2004.

Coates, Glen. , Cox, Geoffrey J; The rise and fall of the Southern Alps ; Canterbury University Press, 2002.

Compton, Robert R; Geology in the field ; Wiley, 1985 (ISBN: 9780471829027).

Maltman, Alex,1944-; Geological maps :an introduction ; 2nd ed; John Wiley, 1998.

There are no required textbooks for GEOL240. However, students are strongly encouraged to read the books listed to assist in their learning.

Course links

Library portal


GEOL111 and either GEOL113 or GEOL115 (or alternatively GEOL112). GEOL240 (and 241) are essential prerequisites for GEOL351 and 352 and for those students wishing to proceed to postgraduate study in Geology and Engineering Geology. It is strongly recommended for all students wishing to major in Geology and Engineering Geology.

Essential Equipment:
Field equipment required for the course includes a geological hammer + safety glasses, grain size comparator and hand lens, all of which can be purchased from the Department. In addition a waterproof field note book, hard (2H) pencil and sharpener, ruler, protractor, and coloured pencils will be required. Students should also carry their own first aid kit in the field and have adequate supplies of any medicines required for known medical conditions, including allergies. Bring sunscreen lotion. We will stay in shearer’s quarters, so you will need a sleeping bag, pillow case (+ extra pillow) and towel(s). Conditions in the field will vary, so you must come prepared for variable weather conditions ranging from hot and sunny to cold and wet. Strong boots, with ankle protection are required (you will not be allowed to go into the field unless you have adequate footwear). A waterproof jacket, a hat and a change of clothes are also essential. Bring a day pack and drink bottle(s). You must complete a field safety form before leaving on the field trip.  Geological equipment can be purchased from the Department. (See order form provided in the first course laboratory meeting)

Additional Course Outline Information

Academic integrity

Marks and Grades
The Department of Geological Sciences uses the following scale to convert marks into grades:
100 – 90 A+ 74 – 70 B 54 – 50 C-
89 – 85 A 69 – 65 B- 49 – 40 D
84 – 80 A- 64 – 60 C+ Below 40 E
79 – 75 B+ 59 – 55 C

The Department of Geological Sciences reserves the right to adjust this mark/grade conversion, when deemed necessary.

Late Work
It is the policy for this course that late work is not accepted. Or, late work should be accompanied with a detailed explanation of why the work is late. The work will be marked and marks will be subtracted for each day the work is late. Days late include week-end and holidays.

Academic Liaison
Christopher Oze (room 329,, is in charge of liaison with students in geology courses. Each year level will appoint a student representative(s) to the liaison committee at the start of the semester. Please feel free to talk to the Academic Liaison or the student rep about any problems or concerns that you might have.

Students with Disabilities
Students with disabilities should speak with someone at Disability Resource Service. Their office is room 317 in the Rutherford Building. Phone: 364 2350 (or ext. 6350), email:

Policy on Dishonest Practice
Plagiarism, collusion, copying and ghost writing are unacceptable and dishonest practices.
• Plagiarism is the presentation of any material (text, data, figures or drawings, on any medium including computer files) from any other source without clear and adequate acknowledgement of the source.
• Collusion is the presentation of work performed in conjunction with another person or persons, but submitted as if it has been completed only by the names author(s).
• Copying is the use of material (in any medium, including computer files) produced by another person(s) with or without their knowledge and approval.
• Ghost writing is the use of another person(s) (with or without payment) to prepare all or part of an item submitted for assessment.

In cases where dishonest practice is involved in tests or other work submitted for credit, the student will be referred to the University Proctor. The instructor may choose to not mark the work.

Reconsideration of Grades
Students should, in the first instance, speak to the course co-ordinator about their marks. If they cannot reach an agreeable solution, students should then speak to the Head of the Geological Sciences Department. Students can appeal any decision made on their final grade. You can apply at the Registry to appeal the final grade within 4 weeks of the end of the semester. Be aware that there are time limits for each step of the appeals process.

Aegrotat Applications
If you feel that illness, injury, bereavement or other critical circumstances has prevented you from completing an item of assessment or affected your performance, you should complete an aegrotat application form, available from the Registry or the Student Health and Counselling Service. This should be within seven days of the due date for the required work or the date of the examination. In the case of illness or injury, medical consultation should normally have taken place shortly before or within 24 hours after the due date for the required work, or the date of the test or examination. For further details on aegrotat applications, please refer to the Enrolment Handbook. You have the right to appeal any decision made, including aegrotat decisions.

Missing of Tests
In rare cases a student will not be able to sit a test. In such cases, the student should consult with the course co-ordinator or the Head of the Department of Geological Sciences to arrange alternative procedures. This must be done well in advance of the set date for the test.

Provisional Timetable

Week starting Lecturer Laboratory - held in Von Haast Room 221

20th Feb
27th Feb PA Intro to course
6th March PA Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps
13th March PA Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps
20th March PA Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps Both one day trips: Weekend of 25th/ 26th March
27th March PA Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps
3th April PA Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps

10th-30th April Various Field trips 3 streams; dates TBC

1st May PA Reading and Interpreting Geological Maps
8th May No Lab
15th May PA Lab exam
22nd May No Lab
29th May No Lab
25th May No Lab
1st June No Lab

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $866.00

International fee $3,789.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

Fees Note

Course Fees
Field Trip - A field trip fee (to be advised) is charged at enrolment and covers the cost of transport and accommodation. Catering (breakfast, packed lunch and dinner) will be available at a cost (to be advised) whilst in the field over the semester break.

Minimum enrolments

This course will not be offered if fewer than 30 people apply to enrol.

For further information see School of Earth and Environment on the departments and faculties page .

All GEOL240 Occurrences

  • GEOL240-18S1 (C) Semester One 2018