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Petrogenesis and Tectonics

The course addresses different magmatic and metamorphic processes and their coupling to plate tectonics such as the formation of magmas, their movement and evolution, and how the composition of magma is governed by plate tectonic environments.

Metamorphism, the chemical reactions occurring during metamorphism, how these are used to constrain pressure and temperature, as well as the role fluids play during these processes, are presented.

The physical and chemical properties of Earth’s lithosphere and mantle, which govern the movements of the continental plates, are emphasized.

  • Course structure

    The course is equivalent to a full-time study load for a nine week period. Teaching is conducted through lectures, laboratories, seminars, and field work. Seminars will includereading and discussion, as well as presentation of written and oral summaries.

    After completion of this course, students should be able to:
    • Identify the key physical processes associated with the formation of igneous and metamorphic rocks, and metamorphism within a plate tectonic framework.
    • Specify how the composition of magma and style of metamorphism are controlled byplate tectonic environment.
    • Outline the critical factors associated with the formation and evolution of primary magmas.
    • Apply knowledge of geochemical processes to define the role of continental crust in theevolution of magmas.
    • Describe and interpret geochemical data within the context of melt genesis.
    • Outline the critical factors associated with the formation of metamorphic rocks.
    • Outline the relationship between metamorphism, fluid flow, formation of metamorphic fabrics, radiometric ages and PTt paths.
    • Link PTt paths to the tectonic environment.
    • Use a petrographic microscope to constrain the evolution of igneous and metamorphic environments.

    Download GG5127 course description (25 Kb)

    Teaching format

    The course is designed to provide an introduction to the theory behind igneous and metamorphicpetrogenesis within a plate tectonic framework. The course therefore requires:
    • Reading of course literature.
    • Completing daily laboratory assignments. The laboratories are linked to lectures and reading assignments, and are specifically designed to relate theoretical to applied knowledge. Each laboratory requires completion of a written report.
    • Student-lead presentation. Each student/team of students will (co)lead a presentation and discussion integrating the combined aspects of igneous, metamorphism, and structural evolution for a specific tectonic environment. Several articles will form the basis of this presentation and will be selected with feedback from the course instructors. A successful student presentation includes providing a short summary of the papers, summarizing themajor points, and linking this material to theoretical concepts.
    • Field excursion. The field excursion is an important part of the course, linking theory with observations. Participation is required and daily quizzes will assess your observational skills and ability to synthesize.
    • Completion of all exams.


    The final grade will be based on the following:
    Student presentation 10%
    the oral presentation summarizing a specific tectonic setting will be assessed with group and instructor feedback. The student presentation requires i) a written summary (1 A4 page maximum) of the articles used due at the beginning of the presentation, ii) a presentation which coherently integrates the igneous, metamorphic, and structural evolution of a specific tectonic setting, and iii) a demonstrated knowledge and comprehension of the reading assignments via your presentation and direct queries. A point system will be used.
    Laboratories 40%
    performance in the laboratory will result in a written product which should demonstrate your understanding and successful completion of the exercises. A point system will be used.
    Final exam 50%
    there will be a final exam at the end of each moment. A point system will be used.

  • Course literature

    Note that the course literature can be changed up to two months before the start of the course.

    An Introduction to Igneous & Metamorphic Petrology (2001) by J.D. Winter, Prentice Hall, International edition (paper back), ISBN 0-321-68132-0

    Principles of Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology (2009) Philpotts, A.R. & Ague, J.J. Principles of igneous and metamorphic petrology, 2nd edition, Cambridge University Press, ISBN-10: 0521880068 | ISBN-13: 978-0521880060 | Edition: 2nd

  • Contact

    Victoria PeaseProfessor of Tectonics and magmatism
    Victoria Pease
    +46 (0)8 674 73 21 | Room: R429

    Office hours: Wednesdays 10.00–11.00