Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Fieldwork Skills
Academic Year
Semester 2

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Daily field notebook and summary field report  Written assessed field notebook and short report (2000 words)  100%
Supplementary Assessment Students who attend the field course but fail the assessment will be given the opportunity to resubmit failed components. An alternative form of assessment (2000 word alternative assessment using appropriate field data provided by the module coordinators and focusing on technique description) is only available to students who are unable to participate in fieldwork, as a result of extenuating personal and/or medical issues that have been corroborated by an independent and appropriately qualified professional.  100%

Learning Outcomes

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

Classify and record major rock types and their key bounding relationships in 2D and 3D.

Assess the impact of past and current mining activity in the field.

Demonstrate proficiency in the field, graphical, sampling and field note-taking skills.

Demonstrate technical proficiency in the operation of field instruments, and evaluate the safety and logistical requirements of fieldwork planning.

Brief description

This module is designed as an introduction to field techniques in Environmental Earth Science. It consists of a 7 day residential field course during the Easter vacation.

During this course the rocks of the area are studied with visits to a wide range of localitits, building up a picture of the regional geology. This is supplemented with visits to sites of extractive industries and other industrial sites such as power stations. The environmental impact of current and past industrial activities is assessed. A report of the field trip is subsequently written up using the observations recorded in the field.


This module will introduce the following themes:

- Stratigraphy

- Structures in 2D and 3D

- Recording data in the field

- Applied fieldwork

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Interpretation of numberical and graphical data is integral to Environmental Earth Science fieldwork. Students will be expected to record and interpret numerical data both in the field and as part of the follow-up assessed field report.
Communication Field days are inherently interactive, and students will be encouraged to communicate with each other through small group exercises. The field trip ensures a high number of contact hours between staff and students to enable development of strong communication, and ample opportunites for one-to-one and group discussions.
Improving own Learning and Performance This field trip is designed to build student skills gradually, with opportunities for formative feedback throughout the week. This will enable students to drive their own performance improvement throughout.
Information Technology During field days satellite imagery will be available to aid geological map interpretation, and interactive mapping software will be utilised in the field. Students will be expected to use information technology to aid further reading.
Personal Development and Career planning Upon successful completion of this module students will have developed a range of practical field skills integral to any earth science/geology career path. They will develop basic field geology skills, understand how to survey an area to assess its geology and structure, and will apply these skills to industrial study sites on the residential field course.
Problem solving This module will develop a series of skills to enable students to interpret various rock types, their structure and distribution, and how to record these data effectively. The module is designed to build these skills incrementally during the field trip, with a chance to apply problem solving skills to real world examples on individual field days, both in group and independent learning environments.
Research skills The students will be introduced to new topics which will require additional research. A written report following the residential field trip will necessitate use of research and information literacy skills.
Subject Specific Skills This module will develop a range of practical field skills including how to record structural measurements in the field, sedimentary logging and stratigraphy, representing geology and geological structures in 2D and 3D, field sketching, and how to effectively record field data.
Team work Small group work will be an integral part of the residential field trip


This module is at CQFW Level 4