The University of Southampton

SOES3022 Geophysics Research Training

Module Overview

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

• To provide you with the opportunity to investigate a topic of interest and relevance to your selected degree pathway and career expectations. • To develop skills in the search for and critical evaluation of published information. • To provide training in the synthesis, analysis and interpretation of geophysical data and in the preparation of a coherent and internally consistent scientific reported based on those data.

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Identify the key observations and conclusions in a scientific report.
  • Analyse and interpret quantitative geophysical datasets as an individual and as a scientific team.
  • Critically evaluate those observations, analyses and conclusions.
  • Prepare a coherent written analysis of the conclusions as an individual and as a scientific team.
  • Ability to identify key aspects of a scientific report and an oral presentation.
  • Confidence to critically evaluate the scientific merit of the report.
  • Ability to write a judgmental, well-balanced synthesis and critique of published scientific information and original research.
  • Quantitative data analysis and interpretation.
  • Ability to work as both a member of a scientific team and as an independent researcher.


The individual project will be a well-defined piece of original research to be conducted by the student under close supervision by relevant academic staff. The student will go through the entire research process, from the literature review of a scientific problem, obtaining data from various geophysical databases, processing and analysing the data, presenting their results in an oral presentation, receiving feedback from peers, and presenting findings in a short manuscript. Each student should discuss potential topics with relevant members of academic staff. This project will build on skills developed in SOES3042 and act as key preparation/skills enhancement for the completion of the Final Year Research Project. The group project will involve a larger, potentially multidisciplinary problem to be addressed by the entire class. This exercise will involve the manipulation, analysis and interpretation of a geophysical datasets and could involve data from solid earth and/or oceanographic experiments. This exercise will build on the skills developed in SOES3042 and act as key preparation/skills enhancement for the completion of the Final Year Research Project. The class will be required to submit a single coherent body of work at the end of the course. The field trip will involve basic field observation and mapping. The students will exercise skills developed in earlier modules.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

This module represents independent working, but which is undertaken in close collaboration with supervising staff. From a list of topics and datasets provided, you will identify two topics of interest, one to investigate in the form of a literature review and one for the production of a journal paper based on data analysis. With support from your supervisor via regular meetings, you will: • Learn to recognise and extract the key aspects of a published piece of work and orginal research. • Develop the skills and confidence to critically evaluate the resulting body of data and be able to present a coherent and cogently argued synthesis of that information. • Quantitatively analyse and interpret a geophysical dataset. • Compile a scientific report and oral presentation. A wide range of support can be provided for those students who have further or specific learning and teaching needs.

Practical classes and workshops2
Total study time27



MethodPercentage contribution
Group project 50%
Journal Article 35%
Presentation report  (15 minutes) 15%
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