Magmatism and Metamorphism Field Trip

This information is correct for the semester 1, 2022 trip. It is expected that some changes will be made for 2023: please check back later or contact the course convenor for more information.
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In this two day trip, students learn about the formation and evolution of rocks in the Lachlan Fold Belt near Cooma. We will be making and recording observations of formations in the field. By analysing these data and linking them to geochemical data, we can develop models of how the structures formed and evolved over time. Seeing these structures in the field provides an extra level of information over what is available from hand specimens, and allows the large-scale geological relationships to be observed.

Interested in participating? Read on.

Participating in trips can be a highlight of your university experience; however, it is also important to think carefully about whether it is the right decision for you at this point in time. This page is to help you understand what the trip involves, so that you can make an informed decision. The information is accurate to the best of our ability; however, please be aware that trip plans can change at the last minute. If this may cause issues for you or you need additional information, please talk to the course convenor.

How we can help you participate

For most of our trips, there are lots of options for flexibility that may make it easier for you to take part. This page will tell you about some of them.  Keep in mind, it is not possible for us to anticipate every individual circumstance, so please contact the course convenor if you have other ideas for how we could help you participate. If you would like support discussing your needs with the course convenor or if your discussion didn't go as you expected, please contact the school accessibility contact.

How to participate?

Any student who meets the pre-requisites can enrol in one of the relevant courses and participate in the trips.

If you can't participate

Students who cannot participate in the trip may be able to negotiate alternative participation and assessment requirements with the course convenor. If you may require this, please discuss with the course convenor before enrolling in one of the relevant courses.


Activity sites: rocky outcrops and geological features

We will be visiting a range of rocky outcrops and geological formations throughout the trip. Weather conditions during the trip may vary: potentially hot (>30 °C) and sunny to cool (5 - 10 °C)/windy/rainy. We will be without access to toilets for up to about 5 hours at a time. You will need to carry your own provisions if you cannot manage this. Students should also bring a ziplock plastic bag so they can dispose of their toilet paper or tissue in an environmentally friendly manner after the day in the field.

The majority of the field sites are less than 100m from the bus over uneven ground and students must be able to safely cover this distance. Two of the sites are approximately 500m away. Students who have difficulty with mobility in the field should discuss this with the course convener prior to the trip, even if they can cover the distance described above. The convener will take the students' needs into account if the trip plans change (e.g. due to weather) and in emergency situations. Students with sensory impairments that impact their ability to identify hazards or follow emergency instructions must discuss this with the course convenor at the beginning of semester so we can investigate possible ways for you to safely participate.

Accommodation: motel

Accommodation is in dormitory rooms of 3 - 5 people. Students make their own arrangements of whom to share with. The motel has ground floor rooms, but there are no designated accessible rooms. If you require accessible accommodation, please talk to the convenor at the beginning of semester and we will investigate whether there are other accommodation options that may work.

Travel: minibus 

We travel by minibus from RSES, organised by the course convener. Students must arrive before the departure time. The trip returns to RSES at around 5.30 or 6 pm on the Sunday. If you require accessible transport, please discuss this with the course convenor at the beginning of semester and we will investigate the options available.

Food: bring or purchase your own 

Students should bring a packed lunch on both days. We usually dine as a group in the Cooma Hotel on the Saturday night but students are free to make their own arrangements if preferred. There are many cafes and shops in Cooma for purchase of breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you have a very restrictive diet or allergies to the food other people eat, please discuss this with the convenor at the beginning of semester, so we can investigate the food options available.

Cost: $70 

The cost will be $70. Students will also need to pay for food from cafes or shops or bring their own.

Health & wellbeing

Look after yourself: staying away overnight

For some students, staying overnight away from support networks can be an issue and students are strongly encouraged to think about how they will manage their physical and mental health while on the trip. First aid officers can assist by arranging storage for medical equipment/medicine and arranging transport to medical facilities if needed. Students should be aware that the university's insurance policy does not cover pre-existing conditions.

Field trips typically involve extended periods of work and leisure time spent with other people, resulting in limited time alone or privacy. Students who feel they would benefit from time alone or in quiet locations should discuss the options with the course convener.

Look out for each other: respecting other students' needs

During the trips you will work alongside other students for extended periods of time, including during non-academic time. It is essential that you understand and respect the varying needs of other members of the group during the trip.  If this might be an issue for you, please talk to the course convener.  We can talk through the issues, suggest strategies to improve the situation and facilitate discussions with other group members.

Workload: Long days in the field, free time in the evening

On the first day we depart RSES at 8 am and reach the accommodation at ~5pm, after which students are free to do what they want. On the second day we depart at 9 am and return to RSES at 5.30 or 6 pm. We will have a break for lunch and students can rest on the bus between field sites.

Clothes: clothes for all weather

Depending on the weather you may experience heat or cold. Appropriate field gear includes, but is not limited to:

  • walking boots (these offer better ankle support than trainers)
  • waterproof coat and trousers
  • hat and sun cream (it is still possible to get sunburn at this time of year)
  • safety goggles
  • gloves
  • warm clothes

Tasks & activities

Identifying mineral grains and fossils

During this trip you will practice identifying mineral grains and fossils based on fine visual features observed through hand-lenses. This is an essential learning outcome of the course and you must be able make these observations yourself. If you have a visual impairment that may impact you ability to do this, please discuss this with the course convenor at the beginning of the semester. We may be able to organise stronger magnifying equipment and can discuss strategies to assist colour-blind students.

Using hand-lenses to study visual features

During the trip, students will use hand-lenses to identify visual features. If you may have difficulty holding or manipulating a hand-lens, please discuss this with the course convenor at the beginning of the semester and we will investigate options to assist you.

Field presentations and discussions

Students will be listening to content delivered by staff whilst in the field (outside). While collecting field data, students will have to listen, discuss and coordinate with each other as small group.If you think that you may have difficulty doing this, please discuss this with the course convener prior at the beginning of the semester.

Learn from written communication

The assessment task will involve retrieving information from the field trip guide.

Handwritten field notes and sketches

During the trip students take handwritten field notes and make sketches based on their observations. This forms part of the course assessment. Students who are unable to perform these tasks must speak to the course convenor at the beginning of the semester.

Project and time management

Students will need to work efficiently and keep to the schedule requested by the trip leader, completing the work at each outcrop in the time assigned. The final report is due the morning after the trip at 9 am.