Geology 291 - Structural Geology

Rachel Bernard, Tekla Harms
MWF 11:20AM-12:10PM
Amherst College

Ours is a restless planet where plates drift, and continents rift apart and collide. The record of this is written in the deformation of the crust – manifested as faults, folds, and rock fabric. In this class we will learn to recognize and assess these and other structures, to quantify the deformation that occurred as the structures were made, and to infer the forces that were at work. To do this, we will develop skills essential to all geology: the ability to think across a broad range of spatial scales -- from the microscopic to an outcrop to a mountain range – and to draw valuable parallels from one scale to another; the skills of visualization in three dimensions and of understanding earth evolution across the fourth dimension of time; and the capacity to infer this three dimensional geology from what is exposed on the earth’s two dimensional surface and to represent three dimensional geology with maps and cross sections.

GEOL-291 will be conducted remotely, using both synchronous and asynchronous lectures and exercises. Lab activities will take advantage of a range of innovative digital technologies- gigapan images, animations, virtual field trips, Google Earth visuals -to achieve the learning goals of Structural Geology. Students will be guided through the course by close, regular interaction with faculty as would be true in a classroom setting.

Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory each week.

Requisite: GEOL 111. Fall semester. Professor Harms and Visiting Professor Bernard.

Permission is required for interchange registration during the add/drop period only.