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GG4069: GLACIOLOGY (2021-2022)

Last modified: 31 May 2022 13:05

Course Overview

This course explores the behaviour of glacier ice, its role as an integral part of the climate system and in shaping the environment.  It investigates how glaciers form and flow, the effect this has on their surroundings (erosion, transport and deposition) , and the response and contribution of the cyrosphere to climate change.

Students will learn to: explain the mechanisms of glacial mass balance, dynamics, hydrology, erosion and deposition; evaluate the contribution of glacial fieldwork, remote sensing and modelling to our understanding of the cyrosphere; and assess the impact and response of glaciers and ice sheets on/to climate change.

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 4
Session First Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Dr Brice R. Rea

Qualification Prerequisites

  • Either Programme Level 3 or Programme Level 4

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?


Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

The course will be delivered through a series of inter-related blocks, extending from background theory and concepts to the application of sophisticated, modern day monitoring and modelling approaches used to understand glaciological processes and form. The course will draw upon a wide range of case study material, underpinned by staff research experience from various glaciated regions of the world, including both polar regions.  The course seeks to enhance students' knowledge of the complex character of glacier science.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

1st Attempt:

Glacier Reconstruction Exercise (50%)

Oral Exam (50%)


Resit not normally available.

Formative Assessment

This is built into the discussion and workshop sessions.  Includes a data-response exercise (glacier hydrology and ice dynamics) and a mock grant application.

Course Learning Outcomes

Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
FactualRememberILO’s for this course are available in the course guide.

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