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1 Fieldwork, the essence of Earth Sciences on Fri Sep 10, 2010 1:10 pm

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There is a long tradition of high quality field-based teaching and learning in the Department of Earth Sciences at Liverpool.
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Whilst challenging, geological mapping can be very fulfilling: your own map, your own ideas, your own view of a piece of Earth history.
The programme of fieldwork is designed to develop your skills progressively over the first two years, enabling you to complete a field-based project and report in the third year. Year 3 and Year 4 field courses draw together themes and skills from different sub-disciplines and involve considerable synthesis; for example, in understanding the nature and evolution of a hydrocarbon reservoir and problems of its exploitation, or in understanding how marine sedimentary basins form while mountains are built during continental collision. Year 4 students complete a substantial project, which commonly is at least partly based on field studies.
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Left: Gently resting in Dunstaffnage harbour: Calanus is the ship used for Oceanographic ‘field’ work.
Right: Some grab samples of the sea bed can be rather disgusting, on first encounter

You will find the programme innovative, integrated and inspirational, with courses taking place in locations such as the French and Italian Alps, Tenerife, Cantabria and the Betics in Spain, Donegal and County Antrim, Cumbria, Dorset, Pembrokeshire and Snowdonia. Oceanography students undertake a week long sea practical to provide practical experience of carrying out surveys in coastal waters.
Geophysics students have a 2 week field course on Teide Volcano, Tenerife, sponsored by Monarch Airways
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Practical experience in seismic and resistivity techniques
Year 4 Geology students also go to Tenerife as part of the Volcanic Processes course. This course considers current topics such as ‘Super-eruptions’, ‘Mega-tsunamis’ and ‘Volcanoes and Climate Change’, an understanding of which is best developed from experience of a real volcano in the field.
For the Geoscience degrees, recent independent field mapping has taken place in Brittany, Corsica, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Norway, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland and the USA, in addition to locations in the UK.
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Figuring it out on the second field day in Snowdonia

Field classes at Liverpool are run by experienced academic staff who will supervise you in the field and during the subsequent reporting. We ensure excellent staff:student ratios on our field courses, so that there is always someone on hand to listen or explain.
Transferable skills (e.g. teamworking, problem-solving, self-management and interpersonal relationships) developed during the fieldwork programme are greatly valued by employers and essential if you wish to pursue a career in Earth & Ocean Sciences.
See our Fieldwork Gallery]

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