Chapter 1 Introduction to Geology

Learning Objectives

After carefully reading this chapter, completing the exercises within it, and answering the questions at the end, you should be able to:

  • Explain what geology is, how it incorporates the other sciences, and how it is different from the other sciences
  • Discuss why we study Earth and what type of work geologists do
  • Define some of the properties of a mineral and explain the differences between minerals and rocks
  • Describe the nature of Earth’s interior and some of the processes that take place deep beneath our feet
  • Explain how those processes are related to plate tectonics and describe a few of the features that are characteristic of plate boundaries
  • Use the notation for geological time, gain an appreciation for the vastness of geological time, and describe how very slow geological processes can have enormous impacts over time


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Physical Geology Copyright © by Steven Earle is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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