Module Identifier EAM1520  
Academic Year 2004/2005  
Co-ordinator Dr Nicholas J G Pearce  
Semester Semester 2  
Other staff Dr Bill Perkins  
Pre-Requisite Succesful completion of Semester 1 MSc course  
Course delivery Lecture   16 Hours  
  Practical   2 Hours  
  Other   Oral presentations from the students on the geochemistry of one particular element  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment Continuous assessment of 8 laboratory practical exercises75%
Semester Assessment Report on the geochemical behaviour of an element, 2,500 words18%
Semester Assessment 15 min oral presentation on the geochemical behaviour of an element8%
Supplementary Assessment   

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
1. Demonstrate an understanding of the factors which control the distribution of elements in the primary and secondary environments

Derive from first principles information concerning the solubility, stability and behaviour of elements in the secondary environment

Identify, retrieve and interpret information on the geochemistry of a particular element

Summarise and present relevant geochemical information to an audience

Make rational, scientific judgements on the validity and application of particular numerical methods to solving a range of geocehmical problems

Brief description

A Masters level module which provides an introduction to the processes which distribute elements within the primary environment (i.e. within the bulk Earth) including the primary processes of melting and fractional crystallisation to cause variations in chemistry of custral rocks. Once these primary porcesses have been considered the course moves on to consider the behavious of elements in the secondary environment, particularly aqueous geochemistry and the chemical, physical and thermodynamic controls which govern element behaviour in the surface environment.


Themes covered include:

  1. Bulk earth chemical composition
  2. Geochemical conventions and the structural controls on element distribution
  3. Crystallisation and melting - major and trace element behaviour
  4. Radioactivity and radiometric age determination
  5. Environmental and exploration geochemical data sets - backgrounds and thresholds
  6. Geochemistry of solutions 1
  7. Geochemistry of solutions 2
  8. Applied thermodynamics

Reading Lists

** Recommended Text
Gunter Faure (1998) Principles and Application of Geochemistry Prentice Hall
K. Krauskopf and D.K. Bird (1995) Introduction to Geochemistry McGraw-Hill
A.W. Rose, H.E. Hawkes and J.S. Webb (1979) Geochemistry in Mineral Exploration Academic Press
Donald Langmuir (1997) Aqueous Environmental Geochemistry Prentice Hall
James I. Drever (1997) The Geochemistry of Natural Waters Prentice Hall
R.M. Garrels and C.L. Christ (1967) Solutions, Minerals and Equilibria Harper Geoscience


This module is at CQFW Level 7