Courses & Units

Economic Geology KEA341


Human society is highly dependent on the use of a wide range natural resources including metals. But how do Earth systems concentrate widely dispersed metals into deposits that can be economically mined? This unit explains how a wide variety of metalliferous ore deposits are formed, including the fundamental chemical and physical processes responsible for metal transport and deposition. Unit content encompasses the broader environments that engender these processes, with particular emphasis on the most economically important styles of base metal and gold deposits. Topics covered include ore forming processes, hydrothermal alteration and ore genesis of the major hydrothermal deposit types. Practical exercises using samples from many world-class ore deposits (from Tasmania, Australia and the rest of the world) enable students develop skills in mineralogy, geochemistry and paragenesis, and the interpretation of a wide variety of macro- and micro-scale textural features for a variety of ore deposit types. This unit is one of six 300-level Earth Science units available to students in the Earth Sciences major, and is highly recommended for students who intend to become professional geoscientists.


Unit name Economic Geology
Unit code KEA341
Credit points 12.5
College/School College of Sciences and Engineering
School of Natural Sciences
Discipline Earth Sciences
Coordinator Professor David Cooke
Available as an elective? Yes
Delivered By University of Tasmania
Level Advanced


Location Study period Attendance options Available to
Hobart Semester 1 On-Campus International Domestic


International students
Domestic students

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Key Dates

Study Period Start date Census date WW date End date
Semester 1 20/2/2023 21/3/2023 10/4/2023 28/5/2023

* The Final WW Date is the final date from which you can withdraw from the unit without academic penalty, however you will still incur a financial liability (refer to How do I withdraw from a unit? for more information).

Unit census dates currently displaying for 2023 are indicative and subject to change. Finalised census dates for 2023 will be available from the 1st October 2022. Note census date cutoff is 11.59pm AEST (AEDT during October to March).

About Census Dates

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe, identify and interpret ore and alteration minerals, assemblages, associations, structures and textures at the macro- and micro-scale
  • Develop and apply alteration and ore-related paragenetic sequences in studies of ore deposit genesis
  • Discriminate ore systems using mineralogy, geochemistry and textural features
  • Explain physical and chemical controls on metal transport and deposition in hydrothermal systems

Fee Information

Field of Education Commencing Student Contribution 1,3 Grandfathered Student Contribution 1,3 Approved Pathway Course Student Contribution 2,3 Domestic Full Fee 4
010700 $1,037.00 $1,037.00 not applicable $2,472.00

1 Please refer to more information on student contribution amounts.
2 Please refer to more information on eligibility and Approved Pathway courses.
3 Please refer to more information on eligibility for HECS-HELP.
4 Please refer to more information on eligibility for FEE-HELP.

If you have any questions in relation to the fees, please contact UConnect or more information is available on StudyAssist.

Please note: international students should refer to What is an indicative Fee? to get an indicative course cost.





Teaching Pattern

2 x 1-hr tutorials, 1 x 3 hrs practical weekly (13 wks)

AssessmentAssessment Task 2. Ore microscopy quiz (10%)|Assessment Task 1. Economic geology practicals (20%)|Assessment Task 3. Student presentations (30%)|Assessment Task 4. Final Exam (40%)
TimetableView the lecture timetable | View the full unit timetable



Required readings will be listed in the unit outline prior to the start of classes.

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