Student Pages
Undergraduate course

Introduction to Structural Geology and Tectonics

  • ECTS credits10
  • Teaching semesterSpring
  • Course codeGEOV104
  • Number of semesters1
  • Resources

Main content

Objectives and Content

Structural Geology and Tectonics examines the deformation of Earth¿s crust and lithosphere. The course aims to introduce undergraduate students to its basic principles, analysis methods and field characteristics. The overall goal is to provide a good understanding of how Earth¿s rocks deform at different levels of the lithosphere. Students develop a basic appreciation of rock deformation at different temperatures and pressures and at various scales and understand the difference between brittle and ductile deformation regimes. Students study diverse geometries and types of structures in the field and learn to relate them to the deformation regime, with emphasis on the regional geology of Bergen.

The course includes a basic explanation and quantification of stress and strain, the geometric description and classification of brittle and ductile structures including faults and folds in extensional, strike-slip and contractional tectonic regimes, aspects relating to the rheology of Earth¿s lithosphere at various temperature and pressure conditions, mountain building processes as well as strain concentration in shear zones. During field excursions in the vicinity of Bergen, students gain hands-on experience on a broad range of geological structures. In a series of practicals, students learn how to interpret geological maps, construct geological cross-sections and how to plot and use structural data to solve basic geological problems.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the course the student should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:

The student

  • demonstrates a basic understanding of stress, strain and rheology of Earth's lithosphere
  • comprehend how to describe and classify brittle and ductile structures, including faults and folds
  • knows how mountain ranges and rift basins form
  • knows how to read simple geological maps and geological cross-sections
  • comprehends basic concepts in structural geology and tectonics with respect to the geology of the Bergen region

The student can

  • define stress and strain and can relate these to the geometry of folded and faulted regions
  • recognize various structures in different deformation regimes
  • measure, plot and interpret simple structural field data and can relate these to geological maps and profiles
  • discuss aspects of structural geology and tectonics with respect to the local geology of Bergen

General competence
The student can

  • undertake a basic structural field investigation
  • understand and evaluate simple structural data from reports, maps and publications
  • participate in basic discussion in structural geology and tectonics
  • know how to document structural data in a written report

Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap

10 ECTS overlap with GEOL104

Access to the Course

Access to the course requires admission to a program of study at The Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences

Teaching and learning methods

  • Lectures, 2 hours/week
  • Supervised exercises, 2 hours/week
  • 3 days field work

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

Mandatory participation in practicals and field days. Compulsory assignments are valid for 2 subsequent semesters.

Forms of Assessment

The forms of assessment are:

  • Practicals, 20% of total grade
  • Written exam, 80% (4 hours)

Examination Support Material

Non-programmable calculator, according to the faculty regulations, millimeter paper, steronet and colour pencils.

Grading Scale

The grading scale used is A to F. Grade A is the highest passing grade in the grading scale, grade F is a fail.

Reading List

The reading list will be available within June 1st for the autumn semester and December 1st for the spring semester

Course Evaluation

The course will be evaluated by the students in accordance with the quality assurance system at UiB and the department.

Course Coordinator

The course coordinator and administrative contact person can be found on Mitt UiB, or you may contact studierettleiar@geo.uib.no

Course Administrator

The Faculty for Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Department of Earth Science has the administrative responsibility for the course and program.

Contact Information

The student coordinator can be contacted here:


Exam information

  • For written exams, please note that the start time may change from 09:00 to 15:00 or vice versa until 14 days prior to the exam.

  • Type of assessment: Exercise, report and written exam

    Submission deadline
    28.06.2023, 14:10
    Withdrawal deadline
    • Exam part: Written examinat

      12.06.2023, 09:00
      4 hours
      Examination system
      Digital exam
    • Exam part: Exercises

      4 hours