EART3343 Structural Geology and Tectonics

6 points
(see Timetable)
Non-standard teaching periodUWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 3 core unit in the Geology major sequence
  • The area of knowledge for this unit is Mathematical and Physical Sciences
  • Category B broadening unit for students
  • Level 3 elective
The paradigm of plate tectonics encompasses both plate margins and intraplate areas, explaining the styles and distribution of deformation in the crust and the mantle through geologic time. This unit examines relationships between plate movements, large-scale crustal processes and deformation, flow of fluids through the crust (including those creating economic resources), and the geological structures that are produced and both plate boundaries and intraplate areas. This information is then used to interpret the tectonic evolution of ancient geological terrains, with particular emphasis on the Precambrian rocks and resources of Western Australia, and case studies of multi-scale scales. A compulsory field trip examines deformation and related metamorphism on the south coast of WA, and always runs in the period before semester 1 starts (compulsory; charges: cost of food and accommodation is borne by the student).
Students are able to (1) demonstrate understanding of the origin, formation and development of tectonic plate boundaries and how to recognise them in the geological record; (2) demonstrate understanding of dynamic plate systems and how tectonic structures develop in each system; (3) apply these concepts to analysis of geological terrains, both ancient and modern; and (4) demonstrate practical skills using techniques in structural geology and tectonic analysis.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) progressive assessment during semester; (2) field trip practical exercises and a report; and (3) final exam. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Myra Keep
Unit rules
EART2232 Field Geology
EART2231 Earth Materials
EART2234 Earth Processes
EART8348 Geological Mapping Part 1/EART8349 Geological Mapping Part 2; EART3348 Geological Mapping Part 1/EART3349 Geological Mapping Part 2; EART3347 Field Methods for Earth Scientists
Incidental fees
Incidental student fees and charges are costs incurred by students as part of their studies at UWA that are in addition to their tuition fees (further information is available here or contact your Faculty Office).
Participation in this unit will incur the following incidental fee(s):
Field Trip to Bremer Bay and Hopetoun (estimated cost - $264).
Contact hours
workshops: 3 x 2 hours per week; compulsory field trip: prior to start of semester (charges: cost of food and accommodation is borne by the student). Note that this trip runs prior to the start of semester. Please contact unit coordinator for details as early as possible if you are thinking of taking this unit. This is especially important if you are not coming directly from 2nd year or you are an international exchange student.
Unit Outline
Non-standard teaching period [TS-P-5-2020]

A comprehensive reading list is given at the beginning of the unit.


  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available via the Booktopia Textbook Finder, which has the functionality to search by course code, course, ISBN and title, and may also be posted or available at the appropriate school's administrative offices. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.