Making Waves at the GEOS3220 Field Trip 2017

7 Mar

In February 2017, Dr Hannah Power and 28 undergraduate students travelled to Pacific Palms for a seven-day, six-night intensive fieldwork course as a component of GEOS3220 Coastal Environments and Processes. Staff and students stayed at Pacific Palms Caravan Park, a short walk to beautiful Elizabeth Beach near Forster.

The course aimed at developing student knowledge in coastal environments and processes. This was achieved through a combination of intensive coastal zone fieldwork, computer lab exercises, including using geographic information systems (GIS), as well as lectures by Hannah Power and guests. Students used data collected in the field to identify geomorphological features, conduct beach surveys, assess beach sediments, and obtain wave measurements. In doing so, students gained an insight into how waves, currents, and tides shape the beach and other coastal areas. Teamwork was an important factor during the fieldwork and lab exercises.

Social group dinners, which were hosted by the staff, encouraged students to socialise with each other and staff over the course of the trip.

Some students were kind enough to share what they liked and learned from the trip:


– “I’ve really enjoyed it! I’m studying Geology and Geography and I love being on the coast; it’s so interesting. I’d love to work in Environmental Protection, Coastal Management or Prevention of Natural Disasters so this excursion is very relevant to me.”


-“This excursion has been a fun, professional experience and I’ve learned a lot from being here. The staff here have been exceptional in helping me to understand the concepts and methods we’ve used over the past few days.”


– “This excursion gave me a more realistic idea of the types of jobs I’d like to do in the future. It’s also great to walk out on a beach and think ‘Oh, I think I know what’s going on out there’ or ‘I know what causes those waves.’”

If this course has you interested, consider enrolling in GEOS3220 in Semester 1, 2018. The course runs 1-2 weeks before the beginning of semester.

Email Dr Hannah Power for further details.

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