GEOG 351 : Coastal and Marine Studies


2020 Semester One (1203) (15 POINTS)

Course Prescription

Focuses on the development of coastal landforms across a range of temporal and spatial scales. Introduces natural processes such as waves, tides and circulation, as well as geological-scale coastal evolution driven by changes in sea level and sediment supply. The course has an applied focus with specific emphasis on coastal management problems that affect society. Issues considered include coastal erosion during storms, the impacts of shoreline engineering, climate change and accelerating sea level rise.

Course Overview

Coasts are among the most dynamic landforms on earth. They are also highly contested spaces, with ever-increasing human development pressures coinciding with accelerating sea level rise and changing storminess. This course provides students with the background needed to grapple with complex coastal management issues. It outlines the development of coastal landforms across a range of temporal and spatial scales, introduces natural processes such as waves, tides and circulation, and describes the principle controls underpinning coastal change. The course has an applied focus with specific emphasis on coastal management problems that affect society. Issues considered include coastal erosion during storms, the impacts of shoreline engineering, climate change and accelerating sea level rise.

Course Requirements

Prerequisite: 45 points at Stage II, including EARTHSCI 262 or GEOG 262, or equivalent

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity
Capability 6: Social and Environmental Responsibilities
Graduate Profile: Bachelor of Science

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Describe the wave, current and sediment transport processes that control coastal landform development (Capability 1)
  2. Discuss the magnitude and time scales of coastal change (Capability 1 and 2)
  3. Identify and evaluate the primary controls on coastal landform evolution at century and millennial timescales using examples from different types of coastal system (Capability 1 and 2)
  4. Demonstrate practical skills in collection, analysis and interpretation of coastal research data (Capability 1, 3 and 5)
  5. Identify and evaluate management options drawing on knowledge both of physical processes and coastal evolution (Capability 2, 3, 4 and 6)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Laboratories 30% Individual Coursework
Test 20% Individual Test
Final Exam 50% Individual Examination
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5
Final Exam


As part of the University-wide Tuākana community, The School of Environment Tuākana Programme aims to provide a welcoming learning environment for, and enhance the success of, all of our Māori and Pacific students. We are led by the principles of tautoko (support) and whanaungatanga (connection), and hope you find a home here at the School. Students who have identified as Māori and/or Pacific will receive an invitation to our online portal introducing the Programme, the resources we have available, and how you can get involved.
This course is supported by our Programme Coordinator, Kaiāwhina/Māori student adviser, and Pacific student adviser. They are able to organise group study and facilitate direct assistance regarding material taught in this course. For more information regarding the Programme feel free to email our Programme Coordinator:

Learning Resources

No required text book, but "Introduction to Coastal Processes and Geomorphology " by Gerhard Masselink; Michael Hughes; Jasper Knight 2011 is recommended reading. Additional readings provided on Talus.

Special Requirements

One-day field trip on 20 March required to collect data for subsequent laboratory exercises.

Workload Expectations

This course is a standard 15 point course and students are expected to spend 10 hours per week involved in each 15 point course that they are enrolled in.

For this course, you can expect 25 hours of lectures/tutorials, 25 hours of laboratory work, 8 hours of field work, 42 hours of reading and thinking about the content, and 50 hours of work on assignments and/or exam preparation.

Digital Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.


The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.

You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website at

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page:

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Student Feedback

During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.

At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.

Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter (


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course you may be asked to submit your coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. The final decision on the completion mode for a test or examination, and remote invigilation arrangements where applicable, will be advised to students at least 10 days prior to the scheduled date of the assessment, or in the case of an examination when the examination timetable is published.

Published on 11/01/2020 03:09 p.m.