Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Changes in the course due to coronavirus

Autumn 2020 the exams of most courses at the MN Faculty will be conducted as digital home exams or oral exams, using the normal grading scale. The semester page for your course will be updated with any changes in the form of examination.

See general guidelines for examination at the MN Faculty autumn 2020.

Course content

This course provides an introduction to the Earth’s evolution from the formation of the Solar System to the Anthropocene. Central themes include the structure of the Earth, the main rock types, plate tectonics, formation of ocean floor and continents, mountain chains, paleoclimate, ice ages, and today’s climate, ocean and atmosphere. In addition, we focus on interactions between inner and outer forces and the exchange of mass and energy between the lithosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, atmosphere, biosphere and anthroposphere. The course will also consider the societal role of geosciences today, including the UN sustainable development goals.

Learning outcome

After taking this course you will be able to:

  • describe and understand the formation and evolution of the Earth
  • understand how the inner and outer forces influence landscape development, ocean and land, Earth’s topography, climate, and the requirements for life on Earth
  • mathematically describe a selection of key Earth processes
  • explain why the Earth is unique in our Solar System
  • discuss the effects and consequences of human activities on the Earth system
  • understand biogeographical patterns
  • discuss the background for reconstructions of past environments and climates
  • understand the characteristics and role of the geosciences in a sustainable development

Admission to the course

Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

Special admission requirements

In addition to fulfilling theHigher Education Entrance Qualification, applicants have to meet the following special admission requirements:

  • Mathematics R1 (or Mathematics S1 and S2) + R2

And in addition one of these:

  • Physics (1+2)
  • Chemistry (1+2)
  • Biology (1+2)
  • Information technology (1+2)
  • Geosciences (1+2)
  • Technology and theories of research (1+2)

The special admission requirements may also be covered by equivalent studies from Norwegian upper secondary school or by other equivalent studies(in Norwegian).

Formal prerequisite knowledge

The course includes a compulsory field course and excursions. A health and safety course for safety in the field must be passed before you can go on these.

Overlapping courses


3x2 hours of lectures in combination with exercises, computer lab and group work every week. Up to 6 exercises and an oral group presentation on an optional topic must be approved in order to sit for the final written examination. 

Up to 4 days of a mandatory field trip. The field trip has a mandatory information meeting early in the semester. 

Attendance at the first lecture is compulsory. Students who fail to meet, are considered to have withdrawn from the course unless they have previously given notice to the Student administration (

We reserve the right to change the teaching form and examination of the course in semesters where 5 or fewer students have been admitted.

General information about excursions at the Department of Geosciences.

As the teaching involves laboratory and/or fieldwork, you should consider taking out a separate travel and personal risk insurance. Read about your insurance cover as a student.

Cost of taking the course

Participation in the excursion is mandatory. The excursion has a fee of NOK 150 per day.


  • Up to 6 exercises and an oral group presentation on an optional topic must be approved in order to sit for the final written examination. 
  • A written field report counts for 20%. 
  • Report on a geoscientific topic counts 20%. 
  • Final written examination (3 hours) counts 60%. 
  • Both the written field report, the report on a geoscientific topic and the final written examination must be passed individually in order to pass the course. 

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in Norwegian. You may submit your response in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Resit an examination

This course offers both postponed and resit of examination. Read more:

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) Dec. 3, 2020 12:12:55 PM

Facts about this course

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