This is an archived course. A more recent version may be available at

Introduction to Geology

As taught in: Spring 2008


An unconformity results from discontinuous deposition of sediments. (Image courtesy of NASA.)


Prof. Lindy Elkins-Tanton

MIT Course Number:




Course Features

Course Description

This undergraduate level course presents a basic study in geology. It introduces major minerals and rock types, rock-forming processes, and time scales; temperatures, pressures, compositions, structure of the Earth, and measurement techniques; geologic structures and relationships observable in the field; sediment movement and landform development by moving water, wind, and ice; crustal processes and planetary evolution in terms of global plate tectonics with an emphasis on ductile and brittle processes.