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GEOL2010 Igneous Petrology



This course aims to provide students with a basic understanding of the nature and origin of crustal-forming igneous and metamorphic rocks, their formation and their settings.


Students should:

  • know the terminology applied to igneous and metamorphic rocks;
  • understand the processes by which igneous, volcanic and metamorphic rocks are formed;
  • be able to describe the tectonic settings in which igneous, volcanic and metamorphic rocks occur including a preliminary assessment of volcanic hazard.


A comprehensive overview of the processes involved in forming primarily igneous and metamorphic crustal rocks, including the geological environments in which these rocks are located. Their chief mineralogical and geochemical characteristics and classifications. 

Metamorphic petrology includes: processes of solid-state crystallisation in metamorphic environments; classic regional metamorphism, subduction zone metamorphism, ocean floor metamorphism and contact metamorphism.

Igneous petrology includes: silicate phase equilibria in magmatic systems; magmatic differentiation; distribution and occurrence of magma types, volcanoes, pyroclastics and volcanic hazards.

Modern petrological techniques, such as the use of the microprobe, will be introduced.

Title Petrology
UG Code GEOL2024
Coordinator Dr. Wendy Kirk
Other Contributors Dr Adrian Jones, Dr Ian Wood
Term 2
Credit 0.5 CU
Written Exam 100% (2.5 hrs unseen)
Pre-Requisites GEOL1001 Earth Materials; GEOL1002 From Petrology to Petrogenesis recommended
Maths & Stats Content and Requirement GCSE Maths only.
Total Number of Hours of Student Work 188 hours
Hours of Lectures/Seminars 30 hours
Hours of Practicals/Problem Classes 0
Hours of Tutorials 0
Days of Fieldwork 0
Other None

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