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Registration for the Winter 2020 semester begins soon.  Watch your email for more details.
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Structural Geology

Course Code: EAES 2550
Faculty: Science & Technology
Credits: 4.0
Semester: 15 weeks
Learning Format: Lecture, Lab
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

This course describes the deformation of rock. Students will learn about stress and strain, plate tectonics, structural analysis, techniques of collecting structural data, and some economic applications. Field trips will be required.

Course Content

  • Geological structures in the field and on geological maps.
  • Primary geological structures compared to geological structures caused by deformation.
  • Deformation and strain (mechanisms, displacement vectors, kinematic analysis).
  • Force and stress (sources of stress, dynamic analysis, stress vectors, Mohr diagram, elastic/plastic/viscous behaviour, experimental results).
  • Brittle structures (deformation, fractures, faults, folds).
  • Ductile structures (deformation, folds, lineation, foliation, shear zones, metamorphism).
  • Tectonics and structural provinces (earth structure, structure of continental and oceanic crust, extensional provinces, compressional provinces, provinces dominated by shear).
  • Tools and techniques of structural geology (geological map, geological cross-section, geologic compass, stereonet, orthographic projection, strain/stress ellipsoids, Mohr diagram).
  • Economic applications of structural geology (vein mineral deposits, faulted coal seams, petroleum traps, hydraulic fracturing).

Methods of Instruction

Lectures, labs, occasional field trips.

Means of Assessment

Evaluation will be carried out in accordance with Douglas College policy.  The instructor will present a written course outline with specific evaluation citeria at the beginning of the semester.  Evaluation will be based on the following:

Labs and Assignments                20 - 30%

Lab Exams                                 15 - 25%

Term Exams                               20 - 30%

Final Exam                                  30%

Learning Outcomes

After successfully completing EAES 2550, a student will be able to:

  • Describe a range of geological structures.
  • Identify and describe geological structures at continental to hand specimen scales.
  • Recognize structural elements, and measure their orientations using a geological compass.
  • Use kinematic analysis to explain geological structures.
  • Use dynamic analysis to explain geological structures.
  • Evaluate geological data, and draw simple geological maps and matched cross-sections.
  • Describe some economic applications of structural geology.

course prerequisites

EAES 1120 or GEOL 1120

and EAES 1121 or GEOL 1121

and PHYS 1107 or PHYS 1110

and MATH 1105 (C or better) or MATH 1110 (C or better) or MATH 1120

or permission of instructor.



curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.