Cutting Edge > Courses > Structural Geology > Structure, Geophysics, and Tectonics 2012 > Courses > Microstructure and Rock Rheology

Microstructure and Rock Rheology

Author Profile
Whitney Behr

UT Austin
a
University with graduate programs, including doctoral programs
.

Summary

This course focuses on microphysical processes of deformation operative in the crust and upper mantle, with an emphasis on distinguishing these processes using microstructural analysis.

Course URL:
Subject: Geoscience:Geology:Structural Geology, Geophysics
Resource Type: Course Information
Grade Level: Graduate/Professional
Course Size:

15-30

Course Context:

The course is designed for advanced undergraduate and beginning graduate students in geology who plan to use structural geology or rock mechanics in their research. The course includes lecture, lab and a 3-day field trip.

Course Goals:

- To teach students basic concepts of stress and strain and how they are manifest in rock microstructure
- To teach students to recognize deformation mechanisms in rocks deformed at different conditions within Earth's lithosphere
- To introduce students to the theoretical aspects of rock mechanics
- To introduce students to structural/microstructural research


How course activities and course structure help students achieve these goals:

Laboratory activities will be the primary method by which the students learn and apply the concepts discussed in lecture. My initial assessment will come from grading the students' labs, whereas final assessment will come from their performance on a closed-book essay-question final exam as well as a term paper written in the style of an academic journal. The final exam, and especially the term paper will require the students to synthesize several aspects of the course.

Skills Goals

Student writing; critical reading of geological literature; oral presentations to peers

Assessment

My initial assessment will come from grading the students' labs, whereas final assessment will come from their performance on a closed-book essay-question final exam as well as a term paper written in the style of an academic journal. The final exam, and especially the term paper will require the students to synthesize several aspects of the course, and my assessment will be based primarily on how well they achieve this.

Syllabus:

Microstructures and rock rheology syllabus (Microsoft Word 2007 (.docx) 2.3MB May12 12)

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