Available in clearing

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Course details

Study options

Full-time: 3 years, Part-time: Up to 6 years

UK/EU fee

£9,250 per year (2020/21)

International fee

£14,045 per year (2020/21)

UCAS points

120* (September 2020 entry)

UCAS code

Y002

Course level

Undergraduate

Qualification

Joint Honours

Start date

September

Location

Kedleston Road, Derby Campus

This course is open for September 2020 entry only. It will not be available for September 2021.

What is Joint Honours?

A Joint Honours degree gives you the opportunity to study two subjects as one degree. This type of degree will broaden your skill set and enhance your career prospects.

You can combine any two subjects as long as they’re in different zones, find out what you can combine this subject with.

Course description

Combine Geology with another subject to build an impressive and broad-based portfolio of skills.

You can also take Geology as a Single Honours subject.

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Why you should study Geology at the University of Derby

View Our Geology course video transcript

Top10in the UK for student satisfaction with teaching and feedback**Guardian University Guide 2020

If you’d like a career where you can harness broad scientific expertise and awareness of the earth around you, Geology Joint Honours will suit you down to the ground. 

Delve into a fascinating subject

Interested in the story of how our planet works and has changed over time? Want to know more about the evolution of life on Earth? Curious about hazards such as earthquakes and volcanoes? Keen to safeguard the Earth’s energy, water and mineral resources? Then studying Geology as a Joint Honours is perfect for you.

Geology is the study of the Earth, what it’s made of, the processes which are changing it, and the essential resources it provides. It also explores the organisms that have lived on our planet and how the Earth has evolved through time. 

Tailor your course

The modules you study will depend on whether you select Geology as a major, joint or minor subject. We offer a wide range of optional modules to give you the flexibility to pursue your own areas of interest in the second and third stages of your course.

You can design your own distinctive routes to match your career aspirations. You could, for instance, choose to follow an applied or an environmental theme. 

Derby is where it all started, without the course I would never have been in the position I find myself in. The course gives you all the tools to specialise in an Earth Science career whether that be exploration, environmental or engineer.

Joseph O'Neill
Geology graduate

Exciting fieldwork opportunities

Derby is close to some of the country’s most important geological sites. With its limestone, sandstone and metal-bearing mineral veins, the Peak District National Park is a haven for geologists and the perfect outdoor classroom for you.

Fieldwork lies at the heart of this course and is vital for your career development. Apart from regular field trips to the Peak District and industrial site visits, there are opportunities to go further afield in the UK and abroad.

Our students have explored a broad variety of rocks and structures in Scotland, investigated sedimentary sequences in Wales, analysed volcanic processes in Tenerife, and studied mountain building processes in the Pyrenees.

Explore fieldwork

Academic showing a group of students a rock formation.

Excellent learning facilities

Along with lectures and fieldwork, you’ll learn through laboratory-based practical sessions and will receive training in the use of industry-standard geological equipment.

We have invested in up-to-date facilities so that you can develop your practical skills in realistic environments. They include a spatial data laboratory, map library, as well as a purpose-built petrology laboratory, sedimentary laboratory, geotechnical laboratory and specialist computing laboratory.

Our student research laboratory gives you a dedicated space to conduct your independent investigations. 

A strong reputation for quality

We have accreditation from The Geological Society, which assures you that our teaching is of the highest quality and has been approved by an independent body of academics and industrialists.  If you major in Geology, your studies will satisfy the first stage of professional training to become a Chartered Geologist.

Learn from experienced geologists

You’ll be taught by an enthusiastic, forward-thinking team who are highly skilled and have an international reputation in geology. Our academics are active researchers whose work informs and inspires their teaching. They are undertaking important studies ranging from sedimentology to volcanology, glacial environments to land degradation.

We also call on our network of contacts across the profession to deliver thought-provoking guest lectures at the University. Topics have ranged from how the Himalayan mountain chain formed to new technologies in petroleum exploration. In addition, you could take part in careers events on and off campus, for example at the British Geological Survey. 

an iceberg

Environmental Sustainability Research Centre (ESRC)

Specialising in securing clean environments, nature recovery, and resilience to natural hazards, we work collaboratively to safeguard our planet for future generations.

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What you will study

Example modules are shown below, the modules available as a Joint Honours student will be dependent on the subject that you combine with. In your first year, modules will be defined for you, and will be dependent on your subject combination to ensure you have the best fit. In your second and third years, module availability and the number of modules you are required to take will depend on whether you choose this subject as a major, joint or minor.

Year 1Year 1Year 2Year 2Year 3Year 3

Code: 4GL500

Fundamental Skills for Geoscientists

This module is designed to help you develop a range of intellectual, personal and subject-related skills that are fundamental for geoscientists. In particular, it will provide an introduction to the methods of recording geoscience data from a variety of sources. This includes training in the description, identification and interpretation of geological phenomena in the field and on maps. It emphasises the need for accuracy in the recording of small-scale features seen at outcrop and demonstrates how larger-scale structures, relationships and geological history can be established from field and map evidence. In addition, the module will enable you to develop skills in the presentation and communication of geoscience information. It will also introduce you to the concept of Personal Development Planning (PDP). The module will be taught through a combination of field work (including a residential field course), practical classes and small-group tutorials. Assessment is 100% coursework.
20 Credits
optional
Practical
Coursework

Code: 4GL501

Rocks, Minerals and Gemstones

This module will introduce you to the subject of rocks and minerals. Gemstones, a subset of minerals are discussed in terms of their origins. You will learn to recognise the important ore and rock-forming minerals in hand specimen and under the microscope. You will learn how the main groups of igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks are formed. The course will be delivered through the medium of lectures, practical classes, fieldwork and directed study. Assessment is 50% coursework and 50% examination.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 4GL502

Earth Surface Processes and Environments

This module will introduce you to the processes which have an impact on the surface of Planet Earth. You will learn how the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere and biosphere interact with the lithosphere, and how these interactions are reflected in surface features and sedimentary deposits. This is a module which provides an overview of the Earth surface environment, covering all of the major oceanic and terrestrial settings, and past as well as present environments. You will learn to recognise the products (rocks, structures, large-scale features) of surface processes, and to use them in interpreting environments. The module is delivered through lectures and practical classes supplemented by a local field trip. Assessment is 50% coursework, 50% examination and weekly quizzes (pass/fail).
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 4GL504

The Stratigraphical Record

The module will explain the principles of stratigraphy and provide an overview of the fossil record, both as an element of Earth history in its own right and as a tool for investigating other aspects of environmental change over geological time. Delivery will be by lecture, practical, demonstration in class, and by field study. Assessment will involve practical investigations (50%), an exam (50%) and weekly quizzes (pass/fail). In addition to subject-specific knowledge and skills, students will develop transferable skills in (amongst others) observation, description, analysis and interpretation.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 4GL505

Earth Resources

The aim of this module is to introduce the concepts of reserves and resources, the geology of energy resources including hydrocarbons, the range, occurrence and importance of industrial minerals, methods of exploration and exploitation, industrial processes and the importance of geological resources to the construction industry and society. It is delivered mainly via lectures and associated practicals, tutorials and a site visit. Assessment is 100% coursework and will involve a group project and a computer-based assessment.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 5EV504

Water: Resource and Hazard

This module aims to develop a holistic, interdisciplinary understanding of water through a rigorous examination of both geographical as well as a geological analysis. The module focuses on two fundamental aspects of water: 1) resource and 2) hazard. Students are made aware of differing disciplinary perspectives and how these can be brought together in developing interdisciplinary case studies. The module will be delivered through classroom based lectures and a half day visit to the river Trent. The module is assessed by 50% coursework and 50% seen exam.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 5EV999

Preparing for Independent Study in Geoscience

This module aims to prepare students for their Independent study. Independent study often includes fieldwork which normally starts at the end of the second year. Therefore, the module aims to get students to identify a research topic, which they discuss with a member of staff, design and write a research proposal, apply to the Ethics Committee and complete a risk assessment for their chosen topic. Students are tutored in aspects of research design: defining research questions, research aims and objectives and appropriate methodologies. Students will also learn practical aspects of research design such as logistical considerations of time and budget limitations as well as data archiving (including digital and mobile technology) and location-based analysis.
0 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 5GL501

Geological Mapping and Applied Skills for Geoscientists

Geological maps have many and varied practical applications. Learning how to construct maps in the field is an important part of a geologist's training. Being able to interpret geological maps successfully is a fundamental skill as is the ability to produce succinct reports. This module introduces the basic geological techniques and procedures used in the compilation of geological maps and reports. Students will be able to develop their field skills through completion of an independent field mapping assignment. The module also provides an opportunity for students to develop their practical skills in geological map analysis and interpretation. This part of the module is designed to enhance understanding of the three-dimensional nature of geological structures, to illustrate a variety of stratigraphical relationships and to aid interpretation of a sequence of geological events.

In addition, students will have the opportunity to develop their writing skills through the compilation of succinct geological reports. As part of the module, you will be expected to participate in a career development programme specifically related to work experience and career planning within the Geosciences and continue with the compilation of your Personal Development Portfolio. This will include preparatory work for an Independent Study. The module will be taught through a combination of field work (including a residential field course), practical classes and small-group tutorials. Assessment is 100% coursework.

More information
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 5GL502

Volcanology and the Earth’s Interior

This module seeks to promote an understanding of volcanology and the diversity of its processes, products and hazards. You will study the generation of magmas within the earth, and the underlying geological, geophysical and geochemical evidence. Volcanic systems will be studied in all the major tectonic settings, including oceanic ridges, subduction systems and ocean-island volcanoes, and will be illustrated by detailed case studies. The module will address the physical volcanology of lavas and explosive volcanic systems and their products, with a brief review of the resultant volcanic hazards. Lectures and practical work will prepare students for residential fieldwork in a recent volcanic environment. The assessment for the module is 100% coursework.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 5GL503

Imaging Earth’s Surface and Subsurface

This module provides a basic understanding of the theories, principles and applications of satellite remote sensing, Global Positioning Systems (GPS), solid Earth geophysical techniques and Geographical Information Systems (GIS). The module aims to develop skills in the acquisition, processing and interpretation of images and data acquired by remote sensing of Earth’s surface and by subsurface geophysical techniques. These data will be used to develop an understanding of surface environments, shallow site investigations and deep structures within the Earth. The module gives an introduction to the manipulation and interpretation of geospatial data using GIS software. Students will explore selected applications of GIS in the geosciences. Teaching includes lectures, practicals and hands-on experience with specialist computer software. Assessment is 50% coursework, 50% examination.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 5GL504

Deformed Terrains

The purpose of this module is to introduce you to a range of tectonic and metamorphic features associated with deformed terrains. Geological structures are considered by examining their origin and formation. This module also provides an understanding of the processes and products of regional metamorphism. You will also receive training in the description and interpretation of polydeformed metamorphosed rocks in the field, during a residential field course. Delivery will be by lecture, associated practical and a residential field study. Assessment is 50% coursework and 50% examination.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 5GL505

Applied Sedimentology

In this module, you will study the composition, texture, structures and field relationships of modern sediments and ancient sedimentary rocks, in order to achieve the reconstruction of past depositional conditions and environments. The module aims to provide students with the skills to describe sedimentary rocks and sequences, and to interpret processes and environments through the development of theoretical and practical skills in the laboratory and during fieldwork. Students will explore applications of sedimentology to petroleum geology through working with and interpreting simple sets of well data. Learning will take place in lectures, in practical classes and on residential fieldwork. The assessment is 50% examination and 50% coursework.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 5GL507

Economic Mineral Deposits

The purpose of this module is to promote, by reference to selected case studies, an appreciation of the natural processes and geological environments in which normally dispersed elements are concentrated into deposits of economic value. It will also introduce students to the methods used in exploration for mineral resources, and the factors involved in the planning of a mineral exploration programme. It is delivered mainly via lectures and associated practical’s, tutorials and a field visit. Assessment is 50% coursework and 50% examination.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 5GL508

Applied Environmental Hazards Workshop

This module aims to prepare students for the Level 6 module 6GL504 Applied Environmental Hazards, which is fieldwork-based and runs in the autumn at the start of Stage 3. It will introduce them to the region of study, its geography, geology and hazards. It will give students the opportunity, individually and in groups, to work on problem-based exercises involving assessment, management and mitigation of a range of hazards. Students will prepare for fieldwork activities in Geological and Environmental Hazards, including planning student-led localities. There will also be time for finalising the logistics of the field trip. The module will run as a 2-day workshop towards the end of the Spring Semester.
0 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 5GL509

Glacial Environments

This module examines the nature of surface processes operating in cold environments and their role in landform development. Specific attention is given to the role of glaciers in relation to their role as geomorphological agents. The module is supported by a field-day and is assessed by 50% coursework and 50% exam.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 6EV502

Vocational Module

Work experience and volunteering are important ways to develop a further understanding of issues and problems pertinent to employment, and of gaining much needed experience. This module provides an opportunity for students to obtain and undertake a placement with a company, voluntary body, the University of Derby or a public establishment. By placing the module at level 6, the student will be able to undertake a range of tasks which will apply their knowledge, level of understanding and skills which will be beneficial to the host organisation. Similarly, the student should be able to compile a report incorporating deep reflection on their personal experiences whilst undertaking the placement and an evaluation of their skill set development. The placement work must relate to the student’s degree programme but must not overlap with the topic of their Independent Studies. The module is assessed by 100% coursework.
20 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 6EV999

Independent Studies for Geoscience

This module represents an opportunity for students to exercise initiative, creative thinking, time management and organisational skills in the pursuit of an independent (but tutor supported) piece of research work of their own choosing (subject to approval on academic, safety and ethical grounds). It is a continuation of the process of Personal Development Planning (PDP) initiated in level 4 and 5, to develop an advanced skill-set which will enhance the ‘graduateness’ and employability of students. Central to the research study will be a degree of problem solving, the formulation and testing of hypotheses and the critical evaluation of relevant theory. The research can, if required, be undertaken in a work based / placement context. The module is assessed by 100% coursework.
40 Credits
optional
Coursework

Code: 6GL501

Reconstructing Past Environments

In this module students will learn how to reconstruct ancient environments through providing an integrated picture of the relationships between life and the environment. Delivery will be by lecture, practical and field study. Assessment will involve coursework (50%) and an examination (50%). In addition to subject-specific knowledge, students will develop transferable skills in analysis, interpretation and communication of complex information.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 6GL503

Engineering Geology

The module is designed to develop your understanding of the mechanical properties of rocks, rock masses, soils and other unconsolidated materials in an engineering context. The importance of these properties with regard to ground stability, slope stability and foundation design is emphasised throughout. The effect of varying groundwater conditions is also considered. Site investigation techniques are also investigated and demonstrated. It is delivered mainly via lectures and associated practicals, tutorials and field visits. Assessment is 50% coursework and 50% examination.
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 6GL504

Applied Environmental Hazards

This module seeks to promote an understanding of earth-surface hazards through case studies in a region prone to a range of geohazards. The case studies will mainly be investigated through residential fieldwork, supported by workshops. Students will assess the environmental and human impact of such hazards and evaluate methods of hazard assessment, hazard management, monitoring and mitigation. The assessment is based 100% on coursework. Each student will, with staff guidance, select an appropriate topic related to hazards in the field region to pursue in depth, using data acquired in the field and from other sources.
20 Credits
optional
Practical
Coursework

Code: 6GL505

Basin Analysis

Sedimentary basins are geologically and economically important. The evolution of such basins through space and time may constrain factors such as sea-level change, sedimentation rate and the accumulation of economic deposits. This module will examine sedimentary environments in tectonic settings, particularly focusing on commercial interests, during lectures. Analytical techniques such as well interpretation/correlation and seismic data/interpretation will be developed in practical sessions. Students will apply concepts and techniques to one or more sedimentary basins during a residential field course. Teaching will include lectures, practical exercises and fieldwork. Assessment will be through a practical portfolio (70%) and examination (30%).
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Code: 6GL506

Crustal Evolution

This module provides a deep understanding of the origin, evolution and differentiation of the Earth’s continental crust. It will examine some ‘big picture’ themes which will include: - Ocean island and arc processes in the modern Earth and their role in geologically recent continent formation - The link between plutonism and volcanism, and their relationship to continent formation. - The growth of the continental crust through accretion and collisional tectonics leading to the formation of mountain belts. This latter part of the module will be taught both in class and in the field Models and hypotheses will be tested principally through the techniques of geochemistry. The module will be delivered through the medium of lectures, practical classes, tutorials and fieldwork and will be assessed through coursework (50%) and examination (50%).
20 Credits
optional
Exam
Coursework

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

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Virtual Open Day

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How you will learn

You'll learn through lectures and laboratory-based practical sessions, tutorials, and fieldwork both in the UK and overseas. You will be taught by a team of enthusiastic and highly skilled geologists, many of whom are active researchers working with local and international research partners. You'll also have the opportunity to attend a range of guest lectures, research talks and careers events on and off-campus, for example at the British Geological Survey.

How you're assessed

We use a diverse range of assessment methods, including essays, reports, field and laboratory notebooks, portfolios, posters, oral presentations, digital presentations, and exams. You may be assessed individually or as part of a group. We’ve mapped our assessments against key graduate skillsets that employers require.

Facilities 

This course is very practical and gives you the hands-on experience that you need to prepare you for your career. We have invested in our facilities to ensure that you learn in realistic environments, such as our new laboratories with modern equipment.

Take a look at our facilities

Students studying rock on residential fieldtrip to Anglesey

Geology Fieldwork

Fieldwork lies at the heart of our Geology degrees, enabling you to develop strong practical skills through a combination of residential and day trips across the UK and abroad.

Explore our fieldtripsExplore our fieldtrips

Personal academic tutoring

Your personal academic tutor will work with you to help you get the most out of your time at university. Having someone to talk to about your academic progress, your university experience and your professional aspirations is hugely valuable. We want you to feel challenged in your studies, stretched but confident to achieve your academic and professional goals.

Find out more about personal academic tutoring

Who will teach you

Programme leader

Dr Adrian Watson

Entry requirements

September 2020 typical entry requirements

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points120* (up to 16 from AS-levels)
Specific requirements at A-level

No specific subject requirements

Specific requirements at GCSEGCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification
Interview / AuditionN/A
PortfolioN/A

Alternative entry qualifications:

For joint honours degree entry you will need to choose two subjects. The entry criteria here is for this subject only. Your offer will be based on the higher entry criteria from the two subjects you choose to do. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.

*The UCAS Points required for entry will depend on the subjects you choose to combine. The subject with the higher entry requirements will determine your offer.

Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.

September 2021 typical entry requirements

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points120*
Specific requirements at A-level

At least a grade C in Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Science, Geology, Geography, Mathematics or Physics at A-level (or equivalent qualification)

Specific requirements at GCSEGCSE Maths and English Grade C/Grade 4 (or above) or equivalent qualification
Interview / AuditionN/A
PortfolioN/A

Alternative entry qualifications:

For Joint Honours degree entry you will need to choose two subjects. The entry criteria here is for this subject only. Your offer will be based on the higher entry criteria from the two subjects you choose to do. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.

*The UCAS Points required for entry will depend on the subjects you choose to combine. The subject with the higher entry requirements will determine your offer.

Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.

Fees and funding

2020/21 Fees

 Full-timePart-time
UK/EU

£9,250 per year

£1,155 per 20 credit module

International

£14,045 per year

N/A

Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.

Additional costs and optional extras

How to apply

This course is open for September 2020 entry only. It will not be available for September 2021.

UK/EU students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.

Part-time students should apply directly to the University.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for EU students post-Brexit

International students

Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.

Apply through UCASApply directly to the University

Guidance for international applicants applying for an undergraduate degree

Male student with glasses against a bright pink backdrop

Clearing

If you don’t have a place at uni, have had a change of heart about your course, or maybe your gap year plans are on hold – don’t worry. Call our Clearing hotline on 01332 592020 and explore your options.

Call our Clearing hotlineCall our Clearing hotline

Careers

Taking Geology as a Joint Honours subject paves the way to a wide range of career opportunities, especially if you want to keep your options open.

We will equip you with a dynamic combination of professional skills, theoretical knowledge and practical expertise in geology. The Joint Honours programme also helps you to stand out as a well-organised, adaptable and flexible graduate in the eyes of employers.

The petroleum and mining industries are still major employers of our graduates but the geotechnical and environmental sectors are becoming increasingly important too. As a Derby graduate, you’ll be well placed to enter roles in areas such as resources exploration and exploitation, engineering geology, environmental consultancy and monitoring, pollution control, and waste or water supply management.

The self-reliance, communication and transferable skills you gain on the course also ensure you’re well suited for any type of employment where environmental awareness and broad scientific expertise are valued.

Find out what some of our former students are up to now.

Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

Contact us Contact us

Additional information about your studies

You will typically study your two subjects equally at stage one, before choosing whether you want to major in one subject at stages two and three.

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

The information below is correct for entry in the academic year September 2020 - August 2021 only. Entry for future academic years may be subject to change.

Included in your fees

Mandatory costs not included in your fees

Optional costs not included in your fees

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

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Geology can be combined with:

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For this combination Discover Uni does not have enough data to publish a widget. It is important to note that this is not a reflection on the quality of the course.

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For this combination Discover Uni does not have enough data to publish a widget. It is important to note that this is not a reflection on the quality of the course.

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For this combination Discover Uni does not have enough data to publish a widget. It is important to note that this is not a reflection on the quality of the course.

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