2018 Biogeoscience

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Academic unit or major
Undergraduate major in Earth and Planetary Sciences
Ueno Yuichiro  Yokoyama Tetsuya  Ohta Kenji 
Class Format
Media-enhanced courses
Day/Period(Room No.)
Tue3-4(I2-318)  Fri3-4(I2-318)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Language used
Access Index

Course description and aims

First half of this course focusses on physical and chemical environment in the atmosphere and oceans. Then, the basics of environmental microbiology will be examined for understanding interactions between the environmental and biological processes. Interim exam will be held for enhancing student's understanding. Latter half of this course focusses on global biogeochemical cycles, particularly for carbon. Evolution of Earth's biosphere in a geological time scale will be examined.

Student learning outcomes

The goal of this course is to understand environmental factors enabling the Earth habitable. First, this course will examine physical, chemical and biological processes in the atmosphere and oceans for understanding the present day biogeochemical cycling. Then, environmental changes in a geological time scale will be examined. Quantitative understanding is necessary to analyze material cycles through the interaction between environmental and biological processes and to understanding its evolution.


Atmosphere, Ocean, Biosphere, Biogeochemical Cycle

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

Summary slides and reference papers will be distributed at the end of each chapter. Student performance will be assessed by interim and final exams.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Introduction: Planetary Environment and Life Biogeochemical cycling
Class 2 Planetary Atmosphere 1 - Structure Total atmospheric pressure, Hypsometric equation
Class 3 Planetary Atmosphere 2 - Temperature Green house effect, convective adjustment
Class 4 Planetary Atmosphere 3 - Chemistry Photochemistry
Class 5 Atmosphere-Ocean Interaction Partitioning of volatiles between atmosphere and ocean
Class 6 Ocean Chemistry Equilibrium of carbonate system
Class 7 Biological Processes in the Ocean Biological Pump 
Class 8 Environmental Microbiology autotrophy, carbon and nitrogen fixation
Class 9 Thermodynamic Aspects of Microbiology Energy metabolism
Class 10 Interim Exam. Interim Exam.
Class 11 Biogeochemical Cycle 1 - Basics Residence tiime
Class 12 Biogeochemical Cycle 2 - Carbon cycle and Atmospheric O2 Great Oxidation Event (GOE)
Class 13 Biogeochemical Cycle 3 - Analysis of Environmental Evolution using Stable Isotopes 安定同位体地球化学 
Class 14 Biogeochemical Cycle 3 - Climate Faint Young Sun Paradox 
Class 15 Summary: Evolution of Biosphere Summary 


Introduction to Atmospheric Chemistry Daniel Jacob (1999)

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Geochemistry, Sadao Matsuo
Biogeochemistry, Minagawa ed. (2005)

Assessment criteria and methods

Student performance will be assessed by interim and final exams.

Related courses

  • EPS.A203 : Introduction to History of the Earth

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)


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