Module Identifier GG23710  
Academic Year 2000/2001  
Co-ordinator Professor Mike Hambrey  
Semester Semester 2  
Course delivery Lecture   10 Hours 5 x 2 hours; current issues  
  Seminars / Tutorials   Two or three 3-hour sessions: 'mini-conference' comprising talks and posters by students.  
Assessment Exam   1.5 Hours   60%  
  Presentation   Group poster presentation to be presented mid-semester (20% poster; 20% on oral presentation).   40%  
  Resit assessment   2 hour written examination.   100%  

Module outline
(See website for major themes)

1. Introduction
(i) Arctic/Antarctic contrasts
(ii) Historical background and exploration
(iii) Importance of polar regions

2. Geological evolution:
(i) Arctic (northward drift and tectonic fragmentation)
(ii) Antarctic (long-term polar positioning and the core of Gondwana)
(iii) Evolution of the Antarctic ice sheet

3. Present-day environments
(i) The cryosphere (glaciers and sea ice; the periglacial zone)
(ii) The geosphere (earth surface processes)

4. Polar politics and environmental management

5. Role of Polar regions in global environmental change (climatic change; sea level fluctuations; atmospheric pollution.

6. Economic resources

NB. The arrangement of topics is not necessarily indicative of the final balance of this module.

Module Aims

Module objectives / Learning outcomes
On completion of this module, students will: (i) have a broad understanding of the geology of, and the physical processes operating in the Arctic and Antarctic; (ii) be able to identify how these processes affect the activities of human, populations; (iii) have gained insight into the way in which polar politics impinge on economic development of polar regions; (iv) understand how global environmental change will influence the polar regions, and vice versa; (iv) have improved their capability of giving professional presentations using a wide range of skills.

Transferable skills
1. Each student will be required to contribute to group-prepared talks, and deliver their findings to the whole class. Poster presentations will encourage students to prepare work to a high professional standard, and allow them to demonstrate their design skills. Written communication will be tested mainly in the examination.

2. Personal and group initiative will be encouraged. Students will be asked to choose their own polar topic and search out relevant material, although staff will be willing to provide some guidance. Some suitable materials can be down-loaded from the module

3. Central to the poster presentation is working as a team (say 2 to 4 people). Each group will need to identify their own responsibilities.

4. Other transferable skills include use of bibliographic databases, use of Internet to examine work of polar organisations, computer-based presentation of poster materials and scientific synthesis.

Reading Lists
Hanson, J.D. & Gordon, J.E.. (1998) Antarctic Environments and Resources. Longman, Harlow, Essex. ISBN 0 582 08127 0
Sugden, D.. (1982) Arctic and Antarctic - a Modern Geographical Synthesis. Blackwell, Oxford ISBN 0-631-13613-4
Armstrong, T., Rogers, G. & Rowley, G.. (1978) The Circumpolar North. Methuen & Co., London ISBN 0-416-16930-9
Laws, R.. (1989) Antarctica - The Last Frontier. Boxtree Ltd., London ISBN 1-85283-247-9
Walton, D. W. H. (Ed.). (1987) Antarctic Science. Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge. ISBN 0 521 26233 X
Harris, C. & Stonehouse, B. (eds.). Antarctica and Global Climatic Change. Belhaven Press, London. ISBN 1 85293 187 6