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This course covers the application and interpretation of micro- and macrofossil data in the analysis of palaeoenvironments, along with taphonomy and bias in the fossil record, and aspects of New Zealand palaeobiogeography, through field and laboratory research projects and seminar based classes.
This course will focus on the practical analysis and application of macro and microfossils in determining past environments and evolutionary patterns. It is recommended for all students interested in palaeontology or Quaternary Science. The course starts with a 2 day field trip to Oamaru to collect individual project data for analysis in the lab over the first term. Through these projects students will gain skills, and develop an understanding of, the description of fossil material, the influence of bias in data collection, and the impacts of depositional processes on the quality and applicability of fossil data. In seminar based classes in term 2 students will gain practical experience in spoken communication and critical evaluation through weekly 10-15 minute presentations of coordinated topics. This will be followed by a whole class discussion of the week’s topic, as a means of developing critical assessment. Topics covered will include the concepts of the application of microfossils in environmental and palaeoseismology studies, their influence on palaeoenvironmental reconstructions, and the evolution and biogeography of the NZ biota. Topics covered in these seminar sessions can be tailored to suit the interests of the class.
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.
Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.
Subject to approval of the Head of Department.
Students must attend one activity from each section.
Provisional schedule for 2019 SEMINARS (2 hours) LABS (3 hours)8 17th Feb Class meeting and introduction Weekend field trip Saturday 22nd and Sunday 23rd9 24th Feb Project work10 2nd March Project work (proposal summary due)11 19th March Project work12 16th March Project work13 23rd March Project work14 30th March PresentationSEMESTER BREAK Project due end of semester break18 28th April Microfossils 19 4th May Microfossils 20 11th May Data Analysis 21 18th May NZ biogeography 22 25th May NZ biogeography
Assessment TBC60% individual project (50%) and presentation (10%)25% seminar and class participation (Term 2)15% data analysis assignment
Domestic fee $1,089.00
International Postgraduate fees
* Fees include New Zealand GST and do not include any programme level discount or additional course related expenses.
For further information see
School of Earth and Environment on the department and colleges page.