Ref - SQA

Our ref: 260602
Contact Name – Eleanor Pearson at Glasgow
Direct Line - 0141 242 2199
Dear Sir or Madam
Update Letter - Higher Geology
You will be aware that all National Qualifications have been undergoing a review as part of
the SQA National Qualifications Review, which is being progressed with the Scottish
The main thrust of the review is to reduce the volume of assessment for both the candidate
and the teacher.
Some minor amendments will be made over the next session and SQA will inform you of
these in the near future.
In the interim, only one change is planned and that is to the unit 'Fossils and Stratigraphy'.
The changes to this unit are attached and are effective for the academic year 2002-2003.
If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to call me on 0141 242 2151, or Hamish Brad
on 0141 242 2199.
Yours sincerely
Eleanor Pearson
Qualifications Manager
Geology Higher Level
Notification of changes to the unit 'Fossils and Stratigraphy'. Changes to take place with
immediate effect. These changes will be included in Higher Geology Arrangements
Documents, July 2002 version)
The section 'Geological history of the British area' should be replaced by a new section
entitled 'The geological history of the local area'. The new content and supplementary notes
are as follows:
Supplementary Notes
The principles of stratigraphy should be applied to
a study of the local area.
Since no two areas are the same only a selection
of the following would apply.
Times when the rocks were formed.
For example, were the rocks formed during
Precambrian, Devonian or Carboniferous times?
Major rock units.
Environments of deposition.
For example, Lewisian Gneiss, Carboniferous
Limestone, Tertiary lavas, Pleistocene boulder
What sedimentary structures (eg cross bedding,
mud cracks) indicate about ancient environments.
Fossils. Palaeoecology
What study of volcanic products (eg pillow lavas,
bedded tuffs) indicates about ancient
Geological History
Sedimentary relationships
Sequence of deposition.
Inversion of sequence.
Diachronism. Overlap. Unconformable
Igneous processes
Types and relative ages of intrusions and volcanic
Metamorphic events
Relative ages of phases of regional and contact
Tectonic events
Types and relative ages of faults, folds, plastic
deformation (eg stretching of pebbles in
conglomerate), brittle deformation (eg joints,
NAB Tests
In the NAB tests only Question 2 (worth 2 marks) refers to the geological history of the
British area.
This question is of generic type so should not require alteration or replacement. However,
teachers/lecturers may modify this question so that it relates specifically to the geological
history of the local area.