The evolution of the Earth and life

By Prof. Devapriya Chattopadhyay   |   IISER Pune
Learners enrolled: 169
This course provides an integrated view of the Earth as an evolving planet and its dynamic interaction with life. This is an ideal introductory course for 1st year BSc students specializing in any branch of science, particularly in Geology, Biology, Earth Science, Environmental Science.

INTENDED AUDIENCE: 1st-year undergraduates

PREREQUISITES: Any student who has done basic Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics courses in 10+2 level.
Course Status : Upcoming
Course Type : Core
Duration : 12 weeks
Start Date : 23 Jan 2023
End Date : 14 Apr 2023
Exam Date : 29 Apr 2023 IST
Enrollment Ends : 30 Jan 2023
Category :
  • Civil Engineering
  • Earth Sciences
Credit Points : 3
Level : Undergraduate

Page Visits

Course layout

Week 1: Historical perspective
Week 2: Raw materials
Week 3: Concept of geologic time
Week 4: Early Earth Processes
Week 5: Archean Events
Week 6: Evidence of life
Week 7: Proterozoic events
Week 8: Development of metazoans
Week 9: Major evolutionary transitions and their triggers
Week 10: Extinctions and their impact
Week 11: Cenozoic climate and its effect on biota
Week 12: Stepping into Anthropocene

Books and references

1. Early earth Systems (2007) by H Rollinson, Blackwell Publishing, 285 pp.
2. Understanding Earth (2010) by J. Grotzinger and T J Jordan, W H Freeman and Co., 672 pp.
3. Earth Science (2014) by E. Tarbuck, F. Lutgens, and D. Tasa, Prentice Hall, 792 pp.
4. How to build a habitable planet (2012) by C. H. Langmuir and W. Broecker, Princeton University Press, 718 pp.
5. History of life (2005) (4th ed.) by R. Cowen, Blackwell publishing, 324pp

Instructor bio

Prof. Devapriya Chattopadhyay

Prof.Devapriya Chattopadhyay completed her undergraduate and post-graduate studies in Geology from Jadavpur University and Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, respectively. She received her Ph.D. in Geology (Paleontology) in 2009 from University of Michigan, USA. She worked as an Assistant Professor (limited-term) in the University of West Georgia till 2010 when she joined IISER Kolkata as an Assistant Professor. She was an Associate Professor in IISER Kolkata before joining IISER Pune in 2019. Devapriya is a Paleontologist and her research focus is to understand how marine organisms respond to their physical and biological environment in the ecological and evolutionary time scales. She has been teaching various introductory and advanced level courses of Earth Science since 2010.

Course certificate

The course is free to enroll and learn from. But if you want a certificate, you have to register and write the proctored exam conducted by us in person at any of the designated exam centres.
The exam is optional for a fee of Rs 1000/- (Rupees one thousand only).
Date and Time of Exams: 29 April 2023 Morning session 9am to 12 noon; Afternoon Session 2pm to 5pm.
Registration url: Announcements will be made when the registration form is open for registrations.
The online registration form has to be filled and the certification exam fee needs to be paid. More details will be made available when the exam registration form is published. If there are any changes, it will be mentioned then.
Please check the form for more details on the cities where the exams will be held, the conditions you agree to when you fill the form etc.


Average assignment score = 25% of average of best 8 assignments out of the total 12 assignments given in the course.
Exam score = 75% of the proctored certification exam score out of 100

Final score = Average assignment score + Exam score

YOU WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CERTIFICATE ONLY IF AVERAGE ASSIGNMENT SCORE >=10/25 AND EXAM SCORE >= 30/75. If one of the 2 criteria is not met, you will not get the certificate even if the Final score >= 40/100.

Certificate will have your name, photograph and the score in the final exam with the breakup.It will have the logos of NPTEL and IISER Pune .It will be e-verifiable at nptel.ac.in/noc.

Only the e-certificate will be made available. Hard copies will not be dispatched.

Once again, thanks for your interest in our online courses and certification. Happy learning.

- NPTEL team

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