Skip to main content

Unit information: Geomicrobiology in 2017/18

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Geomicrobiology
Unit code EASC30051
Credit points 10
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2C (weeks 13 - 18)
Unit director Dr. Buss
Open unit status Not open
Pre-requisites

EASC20011 Environmental Geochemistry or equivalent knowledge. Students who have not taken EASC20011 should contact the unit director before registering for this unit.

Co-requisites

N/A

School/department School of Earth Sciences
Faculty Faculty of Science

Description

An overview of concepts, techniques, and issues in geomicrobiology as they relate to environmental geosciences.

Aims: to learn about and examine microbial properties, metabolisms, diversity and abundance in the natural environment; to appreciate the coupling of biological with chemical and physical processes in the natural environment; to examine specific ways in which microorganisms create or contribute to normal geological processes, environmental problems, and remediation of environmental problems; and to summarise current techniques for assessing microbial influences on the environment.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of the unit, the student will be able to: • describe the variety of microbial metabolisms; • draw a tree of life to show evolutionary relationships; • explain microbial roles in: pollution, remediation of mining waste, degradation of organic pollutants, biomineralisation, mineral weathering, and global element and greenhouse gas cycling; • quantitatively apply understanding of microbial catalysis of chemical reactions to redox processes in the environment; • describe methods for evaluating the influence of microorganisms in a variety of natural environments and the limitations of these methods.

Teaching details

Lectures and practicals

Assessment Details

Final 3 hour examination (60%) and coursework (40%)

Reading and References

Konhauser K.O. 2006. Introduction to Geomicrobiology. Wiley-Blackwell, 440 pp.

Feedback