Blog icon

Chris La Rosa, Tagai State College, Queensland

Nature of the inquiry problem

How do we map the seafloor? How can we create accurate charts of seafloor features hidden out of eyesight beneath the waves?

Suitable year levels and subject areas

Australian Curriculum (ACARA)

Year 6 Humanities and Social Science, and Science

Year 8 Science

Curriculum links

Year 6 Humanities and Social Science

  • Organise and represent data in a range of formats including tables, graphs and large- and small-scale maps, using discipline-appropriate conventions (ACHASSI124).
  • Interpret data and information displayed in a range of formats to identify, describe and compare distributions, patterns and trends, and to infer relationships (ACHASSI128).
  • Present ideas, findings, viewpoints and conclusions in a range of texts and modes that incorporate source materials, digital and non-digital representations and discipline-specific terms and conventions (ACHASSI133).

Year 6 Science

  • Sudden geological changes and extreme weather events can affect Earth’s surface (ACSSU096).
  • Identify, plan and apply the elements of scientific investigations to answer questions and solve problems using equipment and materials safely and identifying potential risks (ACSIS103).

Year 8 Science

  • Sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rocks contain minerals and are formed by processes that occur within Earth over a variety of timescales (ACSSU153).
  • Scientific knowledge has changed peoples’ understanding of the world and is refined as new evidence becomes available (ACSHE134).
  • Collaboratively and individually plan and conduct a range of investigation types, including fieldwork and experiments, ensuring safety and ethical guidelines are followed (ACSIS140).
  • Measure and control variables, select equipment appropriate to the task and collect data with accuracy (ACSIS141)

    Reflect on scientific investigations including evaluating the quality of the data collected, and identifying improvements (ACSIS146).
  • Summarise data, from students’ own investigations and secondary sources, and use scientific understanding to identify relationships and draw conclusions based on evidence (ACSIS145).
  • Reflect on scientific investigations including evaluating the quality of the data collected, and identifying improvements (ACSIS146).
  • Communicate ideas, findings and evidence-based solutions to problems using scientific language, and representations, using digital technologies as appropriate (ACSIS148).
Learning Objectives

Students will learn to read and create their own bathymetric maps. They will use their knowledge of measurement, graphing, use of scale and converting units. This learning will be linked to an understanding of submarine landforms.

Student Learning Outcomes*

Students will have a better understanding of how modern echolocation technology assists researchers in more accurately mapping the seafloor.


Student investigation - collaborative task.

Assessment outcomes

Worksheet questions provided

Information and communications technology (ICT)

Use of Microsoft Excel.


© Seafloor Mapping (created by Chris La Rosa) (2021) Copyright owned by Department of Education, Queensland. Except as otherwise noted, this work is licenced under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence. To view a copy of this licence, visit

Download the lesson



Contact us

Find out how we can help you and your business. Get in touch using the form below and our experts will get in contact soon!

CSIRO will handle your personal information in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and our Privacy Policy.

First name must be filled in

Surname must be filled in

I am representing *

Please choose an option

Please provide a subject for the enquriy

0 / 100

We'll need to know what you want to contact us about so we can give you an answer

0 / 1900

You shouldn't be able to see this field. Please try again and leave the field blank.