Introductory Physical Geology (Revision 6)
GEOL 200 introduces the field of physical geology, discussing materials that make up the Earth, processes that occur at the Earth’s surface, and processes that occur within the Earth’s interior. Laboratory exercises accompanied by supplementary reading help students to apply the course concepts, and the term project increases a student’s exposure to a variety of rocks and minerals.
Geology 200 consists of 15 units, divided into four major sections.
Part A: Introduction
- Unit 1: Introduction to Theory
Part B: The Earth’s Materials
- Unit 2: Minerals and Rock Types
- Unit 3: Igneous Rocks
- Unit 4: Weathering, Soil, and Sedimentary rocks
- Unit 5: Metamorphic Rocks
Part C: Earth Surface Processes
- Unit 6: Mass Wasting
- Unit 7: Surface Water
- Unit 8: Groundwater
- Unit 9: Glaciers and Glaciation
- Unit 10: Deserts and Wind Action
- Unit 11: Waves, Beaches, and Coasts
Part D: The Earth’s Internal Processes
- Unit 12: Structural Geology and Earthquakes
- Unit 13: The Earth’s Interior
- Unit 14: Plate Tectonics
- Unit 15: Mountain Belts and the Continental Crust
To receive credit for GEOL 200, you must complete all of the assignments, achieve a course composite grade of at least “C-” (60 percent), and achieve a grade of at least “60” percent on each of the examinations. Lab assignments range in value from two percent to five percent each of the final course grade and you are required to attain a lab average of 60 percent. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:
|Lab Exercises (12)||Course Project||Midterm Exam||Final Exam||Total|
To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.
Plummer, C. C., Carlson, D. H., & Hammersley, L. (2013). Physical Geology (14th ed.). New York: McGraw Hill. (eText)
Busch, R. M. (Ed.), & Tasa, D. (Illus.). (2015). Laboratory Manual in Physical Geology, (10th ed.) Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
The course materials include a study guide, a course manual and a set of assignments, which are all provided online. A Mohs’ hardness scale kit, a pocket stereoscope, Athabasca University set of mineral chips, Athabasca University set of rock chips, and a maps kit are included in a course package sent to the student.
The Challenge for Credit process allows students to demonstrate that they have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university level course.
Full information for the Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.
Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form
Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.
Opened in Revision 6, September 11, 2015.
View previous syllabus
Updated November 13 2015 by Student & Academic Services