Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
Process Glaciology
Academic Year
Semester 2
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 22 Hours. 11 x 2 hours
Practical 1 x 8 hour fieldtrip . Transport costs to be £15.00 per student


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 1 x seminar report  (max. 2000 words)  30%
Semester Assessment 1 x fieldwork report  (max. 2000 words)  30%
Semester Assessment 1 x seen extended essay from a choice of topics  (max. 3000 words)  40%
Supplementary Assessment Students will be required to resubmit failed semester assignments  100%

Learning Outcomes

on successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  • describe the physical relationships between climate change and ice-mass response.

* characterise processes of glacier motion and the relationships between that motion and (a) the structural form of ice masses, and (b) the transport and delivery of sediments by ice masses.

* illustrate the functioning of glaciers as hydrological systems, able to act as distinctive water stores and able to release that water into their surrounding environments.

* describe the operation of ice masses as hazards in many parts of the world.

* appreciate the relative strengths and weaknesses of the techniques employed in glaciological investigations, and to evaluate contemporary glaciological research.


The module aims to provide a thorough training in the physical processes that govern ice mass behaviour, including response to climate change, motion, hydrology and sedimentation. Much of the module will be guided by contemporary research examples and the module will include a strong fieldwork component. To achieve this aim, students will acquire a firm training in analysing and representing:

  • relationships between ice masses and climate.
  • glacier motion and processes and processes of sediment incorporation, transport and deposition
  • the functioning of glaciers as hydrological systems.
  • the techniques employed in glaciological and glacial-sedimentological investigations


  1. Glacier structure and mass balance
  2. Seminar 1: Ice mass response to climate change - the IPCC Report
  3. Glacier motion 1: processes and patterns
  4. Glacier motion 2: fast ice flow
  5. Glacier motion 3: structural glaciology
  6. Glacier sediments: entrainment, transport and deposition
  7. Meltwater generation, transport and delivery
  8. Seminar 2: ice mass response to climate change - modelling
  9. Surge-type Glaciers
  10. Glacier hazards
The module will additionally involve one day of field projects:

Fieldwork 1. Snowdon: erosion and ice motion

Reading List

Recommended Text
Benn, D. and Evans, D (1998) Glaciers and Glaciation Arnold Primo search Bennett, M.R. and Glasser, N.F (1996) Glacial Geology: Ice Sheets and Landforms Wiley Primo search Paterson, W.S.B (1994) The Physics of Glaciers 3rd Pergamon Press, Elsevier Science, Oxford Primo search


This module is at CQFW Level 6