These are the courses that Dr. La Croix currently teaches at the University of Waikato.
EARTH 312 – Sedimentary Geology
EARTH 312 focuses on the reconstruction of Earth history through the analysis and mapping of sedimentary strata. Students learn to use observations from thin sections, outcrop, wireline logs, and seismic to understand the characteristics and distribution of past environments of deposition. A field trip to Awakino where students map Miocene strata from the Taranaki Basin ties the concepts together.
EARTH 211 – Earth Resources and Materials
EARTH 211 is co-taught with Dr. Adrian Pittari, and is concerned with the nature, composition, and origin of earth resources and materials. The main topics covered as minerals in society and their properties; origins of igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocks; volcano logical and sedimentary processes; and, the importance of earth materials as resources used by society.
EARTH 251 – Spatial Analysis in Geosciences
EARTH 251 is co-taught with Dr. Vicky Moon and Dr. Rochelle Hansen. The course introduces mapping and spatial analysis in two and three dimensions. Topics covered include geomorphological and stratigraphic mapping in the field, analysis of geological structures, and building digital maps using GIS. Three dimensional modelling software is used to teach students about data inputs, model quality, and model uncertainty. Basic calculations of slope, volume, resource quantity, and spatial statistics are incorporated into exercises. A field trip to Port Waikato, where students map Mesozoic and Cenozoic stratigraphy is the highlight of the semester.
EARTH 506 – Geological Modelling
EARTH 506 is a graduate-level course. Taught material is organized into two threads: 1) Engineering geological modelling – taught by Dr. Vicki Moon; and, 2) sedimentary geological modelling – taught by Dr. Andrew La Croix. Thread 1 is designed for students to learn how to develop conceptual geological models of rock or soil masses based on field data. The students use the data to undertake stability analysis of slopes using a variety of kinematic and limit equilibrium methods. Thread 2 focuses on the application of geological modelling to fluid flow, petroleum systems and basin analysis, and for stratigraphic applications. Students become familiar with the main input data, data analysis techniques, and outputs that derive from the modelling of sedimentary basins and strata.