Spring 2023 - EASC 106 D100

Earth Through Time (3)

Class Number: 1894

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jan 4 – Apr 11, 2023: Mon, Wed, Fri, 9:30–10:20 a.m.



An introduction to the changes that the Earth has experienced, from its initial formation to the present day, intended for non-majors. Topics include changes in plate tectonic style, mountain building periods, glaciations during Earth history, formation of life, the fossil record and evolution, major extinctions, and the rise of man. Students may not take EASC 106 for credit towards EASC major or minor program requirements. Breadth-Science.


EASC 106 is an introduction to the 4.6 billion year history of Earth, from its initial formation to the present day. This fascinating story traces the geological and biological events that make up our planet's past, and are recorded in the rock record.

Course Topics:
1. Introduction to Earth System History – deep time & geologic principles

  1. Earth Materials and Features - Minerals, rocks and the rock cycle
  2. Geologic Time – the Geologic Time Scale
  3. Life on Earth and it’s Fossil Record
  4. Biologic Evolution
  5. Interpreting Sedimentary Environments and Global Change
  6. Plate Tectonics in Earth History
  7. Archean World
  8. Proterozoic World
  9. Paleozoic World - “Age of Invertebrates” and the End-of-Permian Mass Extinction
  10. Mesozoic World - “Age of Reptiles” and the End-of-Cretaceous Mass Extinction
  11. Cenozoic World - “Age of Mammals” and the Anthropocene

Students successfully completing this course will be able to:

  • Reproduce the geologic time scale.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of geologic principles used to analyze Earth history; interpret a sequence of geologic events using relative age-dating concepts, maps, cross sections, and stratigraphic sections.
  • Demonstrate knowledge about the evolution of life on Earth.
  • Understand how life on Earth dramatically changed during and following mass extinction events.
  • Identify key invertebrate fossil groups, types of fossil preservation, and use fossils to refine interpretations of Earth history.
  • Demonstrate knowledge about significant mountain-building episodes, glaciations and times of significant sea level rise.
  • Understand how Earth is a system that is ever changing.

Course Organization: Three 50-minute lectures per week. Lecture participation is expected, and includes end-of-lecture group activities, in-class exercises, unit wrap-up exercises and movie days.


  • Participation (end-of-lecture activities, in-class exercises, movie days, wrap-up exercises) 20%
  • Test 1 20%
  • Test 2 20%
  • Test 3 20%
  • Test 4 20%



Course E-Text: (or physical copy)
“Visualizing Earth History”; Babcock, L.E., Wiley, 2009

ISBN: 978-0-470-45251-6


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