GEOS5507 Analytical Techniques for the Geosciences

6 points
(see Timetable)
Non-standard teaching periodUWA (Perth)Face to face
This unit introduces the key analytical techniques for the characterisation of rocks, minerals and other geoscience-related materials. The unit focuses on electron microscopy and microanalysis, X-ray techniques and mass spectrometry, based around the state-of-the-art instrumentation available within Western Australia. Content includes theoretical principles and application of the techniques, with an emphasis on data acquisition, processing and analysis. Students gain insight into how these technologies are used for geoscience applications.
Students are able to (1) appreciate the capabilities of key characterisation techniques used by geoscience researchers; (2) know how these techniques can be used to characterise the structure and composition of rocks, minerals and other geoscience-related materials; (3) understand the fundamental principles of electron, x-ray, and mass spectrometry analysis techniques; (4) analyse and interpret data from these techniques; and (5) critically assess and evaluate real-world data, and draw appropriate conclusions from these.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) assignment 1; (2) assignment 2; and (3) assignment 3. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Matt Kilburn
Unit rules
Bachelor of Science in Geoscience (or equivalent)
Advisable prior study:
completed unit in Mineralogy (or equivalent)
Contact hours
lectures/tutorials: 8 hours per week (2 x 4-hour blocks); reading/online tutorials/assignments/assessments (non-contact): 16 hours per week (for 6 weeks starting week 8 and ending week 13)
Unit Outline
Non-standard teaching period [TS-H-1J_2019]
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
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  • 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 at the University Co-operative Bookshop (from early January) and appropriate administrative offices for students to consult. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.