School of Earth Sciences
Discovering Earth and beyond through time
UWA’s School of Earth Sciences is a group of internationally recognised educators and researchers who are excited by the diverse and complex ancient geological and modern environments of Earth and other planets in our solar system. Western Australia has a geological record of ancient processes and environments over the last 4.5 billion years including the record of early life evolution and major mineral, petroleum and groundwater resources. Our coastline is a natural laboratory to resolve important questions related to complex coastal systems including carbonate reefs, and the record of recent climate change in these systems.Geoscience draws on the fundamental sciences to understand how our planet works, and is set apart by the time scales and spatial scales on which geological processes operate. Our activities cover a wide range of fields of study including geology, geophysics, geochemistry, geobiology, geochronology, computer modelling and data analytics.
We integrate data from these fields to solve geoscience problems as we seek to advance our fundamental understanding of Earth processes through time. Many interesting problems relate to the formation of important natural resources for society’s use and using our scientific understanding for predicting future change.
The School occupies one of the oldest iconic buildings on campus, but within its walls our geoscientists use the latest instruments and digital technology in their projects. We provide a vibrant environment for research and high-quality training for our students, and have a long history of successful industry and government geoscience collaboration.
Our research programs focus on providing practical experience, including field-based work and problem-solving skills at undergraduate, honours and postgraduate levels. Students also have access to sophisticated instruments, industry-standard software, as well as the opportunity to learn from, and network with, industry professionals.
We work on a range of fundamental and applied research and teaching in the School of Earth Sciences, providing an impressive array of opportunities for staff and students.
Coral reef studies and coastal marine systems
Coral reef studies and coastal marine systems research investigates the effect of climate change on our coastal reefs and marine systems.Read more about this topic and meet our staff
Early life and biotic evolution
The fossil record provides the basis for our understanding of Earth’s biotic evolution. Our most ancient terranes present glimpses of life on the Early Earth.Read more about this topic and meet our staff
Researchers in hydrogeology investigate the integrity and sustainability of groundwater systems and their interaction with surface environments.Read more about this topic and meet our staff
Geochemistry and geochronology
Research using geochemical and geochronological techniques is continually providing new insights into how our planet works.Read more about this topic and meet our staff
Western Australia’s diverse mineral resources provide wide-ranging opportunities for mineral systems research.Read more about this topic and meet our staff
Thermal structure and evolution of Proterozoic sedimentary basins in Northern Australia - a numerical study
Our postgraduates carry out interesting and often vital research into all manner of subjects across all research areas. To promote their efforts, and to encourage others who are inspired to make their own mark on the world, we present the work of our current and past postgraduate students here.
UWA ranked top in Australia in five STEM subjects
Wed, 1 Jul 2020
Advanced modelling technique unearths deep secrets from a textbook example of continental subduction
Fri, 5 Jun 2020
ARC Linkage success will lead to more sustainable gold exploration
Wed, 27 May 2020
Edward de Courcy Clarke Earth Science Museum
This interactive museum allows visitors of all ages to discover and explore earth sciences. Several thousand visitors come to the Museum each year to learn about past environments, plants and animals, examine beautiful crystals, and enjoy rare experiences such as touching a meteorite, creating their own (non-destructive) earthquake and handling some of Western Australia’s unusual minerals. The interactive sandbox is a great way to learn about Earth’s surface processes.