Resource Database: Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Title A Basic Skills Course for Geoscience Level 1
Originator Brian Whalley
Department School of Geosciences, Queen's University of Belfast, UK
Tel. +44 (0)1232 335146

The Level 1 Geoskills Module started at Queen's University in September 1997. A successful pilot was run for 6 weeks to test some of the ideas and proved that the teaching/learning style works. The module is student-paced and mainly involves independent learning, though 2 hours of lectures and 3 hours of practical work are also provided.

The lecture time is used to allow students to get to know one another (bearing in mind that they are first years), they are sub-divided into groups and given skills based tasks. In the practical classes the emphasis is on sharing of resources (computers, microscopes etc.), this not only saves on resources but gives students the opportunity to discuss their work.

Students are assigned projects which allow them to interlink various skills, for example they might be asked to search the library to find books that help in writing CVs.

All the course information is also provided on the WWW and students are encouraged to look at their own learning skills by providing and receiving continuous feedback (via WWW-based forms). The WWW is also used to provide answers to frequently asked questions.


Group work
Independent learning
Project work
Skills development
World Wide Web (WWW)

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Page created 5 June 2000
Database pages maintained by Phil Gravestock