Plate tectonics is an earth sciences topic that attracts a good deal of interest, given that it a topic very often featured in popular science programmes on TV and radio. It is a subject that has strong visual appeal. In this 15-hour free course the coverage is self-contained, up to date and is written in a way that will be accessible to those with interest and motivation, all the more so for those who have some pre-existing scientific understanding.
Course learning outcomes
After studying this course, you should be able to:
demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the theory of tectonic plates and the different forms of evidence (e.g. palaeontology, palaeomagnetism, continuity of structures etc.) that can be used to understand the movement of the lithospheric plates over geological time
demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the mechanisms of crustal growth and transfer of heat at spreading ocean ridges
demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the three main types of plate boundary (constructive, destructive and conservative) and how they interact at triple junctions
demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the difference between relative and true plate motion
demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the driving and retarding forces that influence plate motion at constructive, destructive and conservative plate boundaries.