Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Choose semester

Course content

This course provides an introduction to planet Earth’s evolution from the formation of the Solar System to the Age of Man. Central themes are the Earth’s structure, main rock types, plate tectonics, formation of ocean floor and continents, mountain chains, historical geology with emphasis on the development of life and earlier climate, ice ages, and today’s climate, ocean and atmosphere. Emphasis is placed on the interaction between the planet’s inner and outer forces and the exchange of mass and energy between geosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, biosphere and anthroposphere.

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, topography and bathymetry, climate and weather, and the requirements for life on Earth
  • mathematically describe some simple Earth processes
  • understand why the Earth is unique in our Solar System
  • understand the affect of human activities on Earth systems
  • understand biogeographical patterns


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.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

In addition to fulfilling the Higher 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).

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.


Lectures in combination with exercises, datalab and group work. 3 hours twice a week. Up to 6 exercises must be completed and approved before sitting the written examination at the end.

There is a compulsory 3-day field course at Finse and a compulsory 1-day excursion.  There is a compulsory information meeting for the field course early in the semester. A field report must be written from the field course, and this counts towards the final grade.

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 Study administration, email address:

General information about excursions at the Dept. of Geosciences.

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


  • Up to 6 exercises must be approved before sitting the written examination for the course.
  • The written field report from Finse counts for 30%.
  • Final written examination (3 hours) counts for 70%.
  • Both exam parts must be passed in order for the course to be passed.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper 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.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

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

Withdrawal from an examination

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.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Every autumn


Every autumn

Teaching language