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SLE395 - Palaeobiology

Enrolment modes:Trimester 1: Burwood (Melbourne), Cloud (online)
Credit point(s):1
EFTSL value:


Previously coded as:


Unit chair:M Warne

One of SLE102, SLE136, SLE103 or plus two level 2 units



Incompatible with:


Contact hours:

1 x 2 hour class per week, 6 x 3 hour practicals per trimester, 1 x half day field trip (weather dependant)


You will need to access substantial learning resources and experiences in CloudDeakin (Deakin’s online learning environment). Compliance with the Standards in computing, connectivity and student capability are a condition on your enrolment.


This unit provides students with an opportunity to study deep-time aspects of the biological and environmental sciences.  Class include:

  1. Fossils of the terrestrial realm and their environments of preservation;
  2. Fossils of the marine realm and their environments of preservation;
  3. relative and absolute dating of fossils;
  4. biological evolution and the fossil record, including discussions on radiation, convergence, rates of extinction and evolutionary trends;
  5. Precambrian, Palaeozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic life;
  6. Quaternary physical evolution of the earth and associated anthropological change;
  7. Microfossils as proxies of past oceanographic and climate change.  Practical work will involve 2 projects. The first project will involve the description and biostratigraphical or palaeoecological evaluation of invertebrate fossils from a limestone, sandstone or mudstone exposure in SE Australia.  The second project will involve the use of invertebrate microfossils or macrofossils as proxies of past environmental change within a human occupation historical timescale. This project will involve the examination of fossils from sediment cores gathered within a modern aquatic setting. 

This unit will also include a half day field trip (or online virtual field tour), or tour of museum fossil preparatory laboratories.


Practical report 1 40%, practical report 2 40%, class test 20%

Unit Fee Information

Student Contribution Rate*Student Contribution Rate**Fee rate - Domestic Students Fee rate - International students

* Rate for all CSP students, except for those who commenced Education and Nursing units pre 2010
** Rate for CSP students who commenced Education and Nursing units pre 2010
Please note: Unit fees listed do not apply to Deakin Prime students.

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