Summer 2019 - EASC 101 D100

Dynamic Earth (3)

Class Number: 1766

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    May 6 – Jun 17, 2019: Mon, Wed, 10:30 a.m.–12:20 p.m.

  • Instructor:

    Kevin Cameron
    1 778 782-4703
    Office: TASC 2 Room 7530.2



Origin and character of minerals, rocks, Earth structure, Earth surface processes and plate tectonic theory. Primarily designed to deliver prereq. information to EASC majors/honours and students pursuing degrees in other Departments and Faculties that require a strong foundational course in Earth Science. Breadth-Science.


This course provides an introduction to planet Earth - how it formed, how it evolved, how it works, and how we can help to preserve it. EASC 101 is an introductory course to the Earth Sciences designed both as a foundation course for Earth Science majors and as a terminal course for those in other disciplines. Lectures investigate geologic theory, while laboratory sessions focus on "hands on" exercises emphasizing rock and mineral identification, Earth structure and processes.

Students who are simply interested in attaining a Breadth-Science credit might be best suited to taking one of the lecture-only Earth Sciences courses, such as EASC 103 – The Rise and fall of Dinosaurs.

Course Topics:
1. The Layered Earth and Plate Tectonics

  • Layered structure of the Earth; historical development of plate tectonic theory; and global & local examples of tectonic settings.  
2. Earth Materials (Minerals, Rocks, Sediments, Economic Resources) and the relationship between Earth Materials and Plate Tectonics
  • Minerals and rock identification and classification; magma; the rock cycle; and geologic resources (with a focus on Canadian resources).  
3. Earth's Interior and Geologic Processes (Mountain Building, Earthquakes)
  • Stress & strain; joint, faults & folds; analyzing & interpreting geologic structures based on strike & dip info on geologic maps; and orogenesis.
  • Earthquake hazards; measuring earthquakes; and seismology.  
4. Geologic Time and Earth History
  • Understand time perspective in geological investigations; relative and absolute dating; and application of stratigraphic principles to determination of the sequence of geologic events.  
5. Environments and Surface Processes (Mass Wasting, Surface Water, Glaciers, Groundwater, Deserts)
  • Types and causes of mass wasting, and mitigative techniques to control them; surface environments & subsurface processes; and the erosional & depositional features that result from streams, glaciers, and wind.  
6. Coastlines and Marine Geology
  • Coastal and marine sediments; active vs. passive continental margins; our local plate tectonic setting and that of North America at large. 

Course Organization

This is an intersession course lasting 6 weeks so there are two 110-minute lectures and two 2-hour labs per week.
Lab attendance is mandatory. 


  • Laboratory Participation & Completion of Assignments/Quizzes 5%
  • Lab Test 1 20%
  • Lab Test 2 15%
  • Mid-Term Theory Test 20%
  • Final Theory Exam (Cumulative) 40%


NOTE: Students with credit for GEOG 112 cannot take this course for further credit. 



A pencil, eraser, and ruler are required for the lab. Other supplies are supplied but students are welcome to bring their own pencil crayons and protractors for labs in the second half of the term.


Course Text:
“Introduction to Physical Geology, Canadian Edition”; Fletcher, C., Gibson, D., Ansdell, K. 2013; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
ISBN: 978-111830082-4

Laboratory Manual:
The EASC101 laboratory manual is required for the course and is available for purchase at the University Book Store.  Second-hand lab manuals cannot be used (students write directly in to their lab manuals during the lab period).
ISBN: 978-132-372-1155

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.