Spring 2020 - EASC 101 D100

Dynamic Earth (3)

Class Number: 1267

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo, We 11:30 AM – 12:20 PM
    AQ 3003, Burnaby

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Apr 16, 2020
    8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
    SWH 10041, Burnaby

  • Instructor:

    Cindy Hansen
    1 778 782-8518
    Office: TASC 1 Room 7009



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 humans engage with 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. Lecture times will include inquiry based activities and discussion, 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.

Course Topics:
With successful completion of EASC 101, a student should be knowledgeable about:
1. Earth Structure and Plate Tectonics
 - Layered structure of the Earth; development of plate tectonic theory; and global & local examples of tectonic settings.  

2. 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.  

3. 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).  

4. Geologic Time and Earth History
-The time perspective in geological investigations; relative and absolute dating; and application of stratigraphic principles to determination of the sequence of geologic events.  

5. Earth Sciences and the Environment (Mass Wasting, Surface Water, Glaciers, Groundwater, Deserts)
- Types and causes of mass wasting and their mitigation; surface environments & processes (erosion / deposition), and our groundwater resources.  
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: ·  Two 1-hour lectures and one 2-hour lab per week. Lab attendance is mandatory. 


  • Laboratory Participation & Completion of Assignments 5%
  • Quizzes 5%
  • Lab Exam 1 15%
  • Lab Exam 2 15%
  • Mid-Term Theory Test 25%
  • Final Theory Exam 35%



In addition to the purchased lab manual, please bring a pencil, eraser, and ruler to each lab. Other materials are supplied, including pencil crayons and protractors 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: Students write directly in their custom EASC101 Dynamic Earth Lab Manual during the lab period, thus this is a required book to purchase from the SFU Bookstore.
ISBN: 9780135891278

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html 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. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html