The Story of the Earth

Ref: C3533403

Being around one half of the age of the universe, at 4.6 billion years, the Earth has undergone massive changes since its formation. This fascinating history will be outlined, including workings of the planet, past climate change and life on Earth enabling an understanding of environmental degradation by humans. The course will introduce the evolution of the Earth itself from the time of its formation to the present. Broad themes explored are ice ages and periods of ‘greenhouse Earth’ featuring the relationships between animals, plants, and the planet. Deep geological time, kinds of rock and plate tectonics will be explained. Modern scientific understanding enables us to fully appreciate why and how humans are callusing serious damage to the planet and to ecosystems through pollution and changes to the surface of the planet.

Course aim

We will explore in outline the history of Planet Earth from its formation through geological time to the present, and explore how a knowledge of planetary processes informs present environmental concerns.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • This course is for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Appreciate the age and early history of planet Earth
  • Understand the changes to our planet over geological time
  • Describe how geological theories of Plate Tectonics and planetary cycles explain these changes
  • Outline the relationships between life on the planet and the physical environment to the 'Anthropocene'
  • Describe how an understanding of planetary process informs present environmental problems

How will I be taught?

What kind of feedback can I expect?

What else do I need to know?

You only need bring items that facilitate note taking. This course is 4 hours in duration, 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the afternoon with a half hour lunch break at lunch time. There is a cafe in the building where snacks and hot drinks can be purchased at an additional cost.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

What can I do next?

View full course information sheet

The Story of the Earth

Is this course right for me? Request more information

This course has been cancelled.


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you enrol. Please check the details below to ensure you meet the basic eligibility critiera:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2021
  • You declare that the address you provide is correct and that you will provide evidence of this and your eligibility to live and work in the UK
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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