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ESS2304H – Geochemistry

ESS 2304 Geochemistry
Instructor: Professor Grant Ferris

This course will focus on the application of chemical principles to research in the Earth Sciences. As a breadth course, the emphasis will be on recent studies across a range of diverse theme areas, selected according to the research interests of enrolled students. Possible themes might include: global geochemical cycles, microbial geochemistry, origin and distribution of the elements and geochemical kinetics. The course will be taught in a roundtable format; students will take turns presenting their chosen research papers and leading the discussion.

Course objectives
 To study and critically appraise a research topic in geochemistry
 To explain the topic in the form of an informal presentation with a sufficient amount of technical background and detail for an interdisciplinary audience
 To lead a discussion by clearly defining the topic under consideration, critical appraisal of the subject material, formulation of relevant questions, and encouraging responses from the group.
 To develop a better understanding of how geochemical principles are applied and used across the diverse range of research in the Earth Sciences.

Each time a student serves as presenter and discussion leader, all members of the audience (including the course instructor) will complete a grading rubric; written feedback is also encouraged. Final marks will be compiled with an average of the peer evaluations comprising 45% of the total, 45% from the instructor’s evaluations and 10% participation determined by the instructor. The number of turns students take as presenters and discussion leaders will depend on how many are enrolled in the course.