Summer 2018 - EASC 103 D100

The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs (3)

Class Number: 1472

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo, We, Fr 1:30 PM – 2:20 PM
    AQ 3149, Burnaby



Class Dinosauria and how our understanding of this extinct group continues to evolve in the light of new discoveries. Topics include the rise of the dinosaurs, criteria for the recognition of the different groups, fossil data regarding dinosaur metabolism, evidence of dinosaur behavior, possible evolutionary relationships with birds, and theories of dinosaur extinction. Students may not take EASC 103 for credit towards EASC major or minor program requirements. Students with credit for EASC 103W may not take this course for further credit. Breadth-Science.


General: REQUIREMENT DESIGNATION: B-Sci The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs is an introductory course with focus on the evolution, dominance, and extinction of (non-avian) dinosaurs. We will examine the Mesozoic Earth during the ‘Age of Reptiles’ and gain insights into a world ruled by the dinosaurs.

Course Topics:
1. What is (and isn’t) a dinosaur?
2. Dinosaur fossils – body fossils and trace fossils.
3.The geologic time scale – a record that goes back 4.56 billion years!
4. Dinosaur ancestry and biological classification; dinosaur anatomy.
5. The rise of dinosaurs – the earliest dinosaurs appear in the Triassic.
6. The big theropod meat-eaters.
7. The feathered theropods and the dinosaur-bird connection.
8. The long-necked sauropods.
9. The ornithopods – iguanondontids and the ‘duck bills’ (hadrosaurs & lambeoaurs).
10. Thyreophora – the ‘armoured dinosaurs’ (stegosaurs and ankylosaurs).
11. Marginocephalia – the ‘thick-headed’ dinosaurs (ceratopsians and pachycephalosaurs).
12. A recap through the ‘Age of Dinosaurs’.
13. The fall of the dinosaurs – the K/Pg Extinction Event.

Course Organization: Three 50-minute lectures per week. Course grades are based on assignment work, ‘Dinos in the Lab’ visits, in-lecture participation, a geologic time scale quiz, and a midterm and final exam. Exam format may include multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blank, matching, short-answer questions, and long-answer questions.


  • In-Lecture Quick Writes & Out-of-Class Assignments 10%
  • Geologic Time Scale Quiz 5%
  • "Dinos in the Lab" pre-lab assignments & in-lab assignments 10%
  • Midterm Exam 25%
  • Final Exam 50%


This course fulfills Breadth-Science (B-Sci) requirements with successful completion (C- letter grade or better).



Dinosaurs: the Textbook, 6th edition by Spencer G. Lucas, 2016.

Note that a copy will be placed on library reserve. A number of high-quality dinosaur books aimed at older kids will also be recommended on the course schedule.
ISBN: 9780231173117

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University.