Physical Geography - Geomorphology - 2nd semester


a)To archive knowledge on the different types of Earth surface landforms;
b) To understand the external and internal dynamics of the Planet and its consequences in the landscapes diversity;
c) To know the principles of the functionality of the natural systems;
d) To apply specific methodologies and knowledge, that allows to analyze the topography and to interpret the landforms;
e) To analyze in the field the landforms and the present day processes and their evolution.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Carlos Russo Machado, Maria José Roxo


Weekly - 4

Total - Available soon

Teaching language





Chorley, R. J., Schumm, S.A. & Sugden, D.E. (1984). Geomorphology. London: Methuen.

Coque, R.(1977). Geomorphologie. Paris: Armand Colin.

Derruau, M. (1988). Précis de Géomorphologie. Paris: Masson.

Gerrard, A.J. (1988). Rocks and Landforms. London: Unwin Hyman.

Harvey. A (2012). Introducing geomorphology - A guide to landforms and processes. Edinburgh:Dunedin Academic Press.

Lopez-Bermudez, F; Rubio,J.M. & Cuadrat, J. M. (1992). Geografia Física. Madrid: Cátedra.

Strahler, A.N & Strahler, A. (2005). Physical Geography Science and Systems of the Human Environment (3rd ed.). USA: Wiley & Sons.

Teaching method

Theory expositive classes, where the program topics are presented, and analyse with the sudents

Practical classes a set of three exercises using GIS; a) Using topographic maps; b) Exploratory exercises in ArcGIS environment; c) Exercises in ArcGIS environment by using a Digital Terrain Model for Portugal, with 30 meters resolution.

Evaluation method

Each student is required:
One written test, representing 60% of the final grade;
Three practical exercises with a report, corresponding to 40% of the final grade.

Students go on a field trip to the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, whenever possible, with the objective to observe different landforms, lithologies and weathering processes and erosion.

(According to the FCSH Assessment Standards, the proposed evaluation elements to introduce students in the first class may suffer readjustments, particularly in the percentage of each element).

Subject matter

1) Introduction.The object of physical geography
2) Concepts and methodologies in Geomorphology
2) The Earth - structure and dynamics - minerals and rocks, the plate tectonics context
3) The genesis of landforms - internal and external processes
4) Earth surface systems and landforms - slope; river; glacier; aeolian and the coastal system
5) The history of the Quaternary.


Programs where the course is taught: