Fall 2023 - EASC 101 D100

Dynamic Earth (3)

Class Number: 1780

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 6 – Dec 5, 2023: Mon, Wed, 11:30 a.m.–12:20 p.m.

    Oct 10, 2023: Tue, 11:30 a.m.–12:20 p.m.

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Dec 16, 2023
    Sat, 8:30–11:30 a.m.



Dynamic Earth offers an introduction to minerals, rocks, geologic resources and processes. Plate tectonics is the unifying theory of geology and is the focus as we learn how the Earth changes over geologic time and results in the formation of volcanoes and mountain belts, faults, folds and earthquakes. 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 minerals and rocks, Earth structure and processes.

Course Topics May Include:

  1. The Layered Earth and Plate Tectonic Theory
  2. Earth Materials (Minerals, Rocks, Sediments, Economic Resources) and the relationship between Earth Materials and Plate Tectonics (Volcanoes, Rock Cycle)
  3. Earth's Interior and Geologic Processes (Mountain Building, Earthquakes)
  4. Geologic Time and Earth History
  5. Environments and Surface Processes (Mass Wasting, Surface Water, Glaciers, Groundwater, Deserts)
  6. Coastlines and Marine Geology
  7. Canadian Geology

Course Organisation: Two 1-hour lectures and one 2-hour lab per week.  Lab attendance is mandatory. 



Students successfully completing this course will be able to:

  • Understand and describe the layered Earth.
  • Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of plate tectonic theory.
  • Understand our local plate tectonic setting, volcanism and seismic risk /hazard.
  • Identify minerals and rocks in hand specimen based upon their diagnostic properties (minerals), and composition / texture (rocks).
  • Understand the concept of geologic time and the placement of major geologic events in Earth history.
  • Demonstrate an ability to work with geologic cross-sections and maps.
  • Demonstrate knowledge about geologic processes.


  • Laboratory Participation and Completion of assignments 5%
  • Lab Test 1 20%
  • Lab Test 2 15%
  • Lecture Midterm Exam 25%
  • Lecture Final Exam 35%



A pencil and eraser are required for the lab. Other materials are supplied. Students are welcome to bring their own pencil crayons and protractors for labs in the second half of the term.


“Introduction to Physical Geology, Canadian Edition”; Fletcher, C., Gibson, D., Ansdell, K. 2013; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
ISBN: 978-1-118-71889-6


Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at: shop.sfu.ca/course-materials/my-personalized-course-materials.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website 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


Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the semester are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.