Syllabus for Global Geophysics

Global geofysik

  • 10 credits
  • Course code: 1GE009
  • Education cycle: Second cycle
  • Main field(s) of study and in-depth level: Physics A1N, Earth Science A1N
  • Grading system: Fail (U), Pass (3), Pass with credit (4), Pass with distinction (5)
  • Established: 2007-03-15
  • Established by:
  • Revised: 2022-02-02
  • Revised by: The Faculty Board of Science and Technology
  • Applies from: Autumn 2022
  • Entry requirements:

    120 credits with 80 credits in physics and mathematics, or with 60 credits in earth science, 15 credits in mathematics and 15 credits in physics. Proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6.

  • Responsible department: Department of Earth Sciences

Learning outcomes

On completion of the course, the student should be able to:

  • describe the basic configurations of plate boundaries, their development through time on a flat and a spherical earth, and relate these concepts to geomagnetic evidence.
  • use the concept of isostatic compensation to calculate Earth's responses to simple loads
  • describe the different types of seismic waves, explain how they are transmitted, reflected, and refracted in the Earth and describe the major structure of the Earth's interior.
  • calculate travel-time curves for simple Earth's structures
  • explain how earthquakes are located and how they can be categorised into strike-slip, normal and thrust faulting on the basis of worldwide observations.
  • recall the equations describing convection in the Earth's interior, and reproduce the basic concepts of convection of the mantle including its link to plate tectonics, and convection of the core including its relation to the Earth's magnetic field.
  • discuss in some detail the evolution and dynamics of the Earth's subduction zones, mid-ocean ridges, continental margins, and sedimentary basins.


Plate tectonics. The Earth's magnetic field and palaeomagnetism. The formation of the Earth. Dating methods. The Earth's shape and gravity field, the geoid, isostasy. Seismicity, source mechanisms, stress field. Heat flow in continents and oceans. Convection in the Earth's mantle and core. The composition of the Earth. Structure of and processes forming oceanic and continental crust.


Lectures, exercises, seminar presentations


Written examination (6 credits), homework assignments (2 credits) and oral presentation (2 credits).

If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the disability coordinator of the university.

Reading list

The reading list is missing. For further information, please contact the responsible department.

Last modified: 2022-04-26