EOSC 221 · Introductory Petrology

Optical mineralogy and the classification and genesis of igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks. [2-3-0] Prerequisite: EOSC 220.

Course Availability & Schedule

Course Syllabus

Course Webpage

Learning Goals

Students should be able to:

  • Describe the modal mineralogy and texture of a rock in a hand specimen,
  • Use fundamental petrographic observations to identify minerals and rock textures in thin section,
  • Classify (assign complete names to) rocks, using published schemes employed by professionals,
  • Describe rock-forming processes,
  • Evaluate the petrogenesis of rocks and rock associations in a plate tectonic context.


Instructors: Maya Kopylova and Stuart Sutherland



1. Blatt, H., Tracy, R., Owens, B. 2006. Petrology, igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic, 3rd ed. Freeman and Company, New York

2. Perkins and Henke (2000) Minerals in thin section, Prentice Hall

Recommended and optional:

  • Guide to Thin Section Microscopy by Michael M. Raith, Peter Raase and Jurgen Reingardt (provided electronically)
  • MacKenzie and Adams (1994) A color atlas of rocks and minerals in thin section, J. Wiley.
  • Nesse (2003) Introduction to Optical Mineralogy

Lecture Topics

Module 1 Composition, classification and structures of igneous rocks. Igneous processes.

Module 2 Composition, classification and structures of sedimentary rocks. Sedimentary processes.

Module 3 Composition, classification and structures of metamorphic rocks. Metamorphic processes.