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Environmental Processes


  • Credit value: 30 credits at Level 5
  • Convenor: to be confirmed
  • Assessment: an essay or data response exercise (40%) and a portfolio of quizzes (60%)

Module description

In this module we introduce you to the basic principles of studying the physical environment by linking procedures of scientific method with the physics of earth surface processes. You will therefore gain an understanding of the long- and short-term behaviour of the earth's physical environment.

The module is built around four blocks of knowledge. The first block introduces the main physical environments of the world and how we study them. The remaining blocks focus more closely on specific processes that shape the earth's physical environments, such as:

  • aeolian and marine processes
  • soil development and wearing down of the earth's surface
  • hydrological processes, fluvial processes and glacial processes.

The main objective is to provide you with an interesting and accessible entry-level module that equips you for further, more specialised study of physical environments and processes at Level 6.

Learning objectives

By the end of the module, you should have increased your knowledge of the following aspects of the earth's natural environment:

  • formation and denudation (wearing away) of the earth's surface
  • aeolian and coastal processes of the earth
  • geomorphology (study of landforms and earth surface processes)
  • pedology (study of soil formation and evolution)
  • hydrology (study of water movement on and within the earth).