GEO/07 - 6 CFU - 1° Semester

Teaching Staff


Learning Objectives

This course is aimed to provide the students with the knowledge and skills necessary to investigate in depth the processes leading to the genesis and diversification of igneous and metamorphic rocks in different geodynamic enviroments and their role in the evolution of the continental crust. To this purpose, the course introduces a variety of both modern and traditional petrologic tools and approaches.

Upon successful completion, students will be able to:

- understand and describe advanced petrological processes;

- synthesize, interpret and critically evaluate petrological literature;

- analyze and interpret petrological data to provide constraints on relevant research problems in Earth Sciences;

- communicate results effectively to a peer audience.

Course Structure

This course consists of a series of lectures, complimented by practical sessions and one-day field trip, on selected topics and investigation tools from the discipline areas of igneous and metamorphic petrology. The course combines advanced theory in these discipline areas with case studies and applications related to current research topics, with a main focus on the origin and evolution of the continental crust.

The module of Igneous Petrology focuses on investigation of magmatic processes, from genesis to emplacement and solidification of the magma in various geodynamic and tectonic settings, with a special emphasis on plutonic systems.

The module of Metamorphic Petrology deals with the formation of metamorphic rocks in different crustal environments, with a main focus on the problems associated with estimates of metamorphic conditions and the use of these constraints in investigating the evolution of the Earth's crust.

Should teaching be carried out in mixed mode or remotely, it may be necessary to introduce changes with respect to previous statements, in line with the programme planned and outlined in the syllabus.

Detailed Course Content

Course content

IGNEOUS PETROLOGY. Aims and methods in igneous petrology. Magma generation and differentiation. Textural igneous petrology. Igneous phase diagrams. Igneous thermobarometry. Geochemical modelling of igneous processes. Layered intrusions. Large igneous provinces. Granite batholiths and plutons. Silicic magmatism and the volcanic-plutonic connection. Relationships between granitoid magmatism and tectonics. METAMORPHIC PETROLOGY. Metamorphism and the aims of Metamorphic Petrology. Metamorphism and geodynamics. Metamorphic assemblages and metamorphic reactions. Microstructures and P-T-d evolution in metamorphic rocks. Geotermobarometric techniques in metamorphic petrology. High-temperature metamorphism and crustal melting. Petrology of granitoid rocks from a crustal perspective. Metamorphic fluids and metasomatism. The time factor in the deformation and evolution of the continental crust. The geodynamic-geological evolution of the Calabria-Peloritani Orogen from the Late Precambrian to the Late Paleozoic.

Textbook Information

Textbook information

Winter J.D. (2013) Principles of igneous and metamorphic petrology. - 2nd ed. Pearson.

Philpotts, A.R., Ague, J.J. 2009. Principles of Igneous and Metamorphic Rocks. Cambridge University Press.

Best, M. G. 2003. Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology,: 2nd ed. Oxford Blackwell Science.

Wilson M. 1988. Igneous petrogenesis. A global tectonic approach. Unwin Hyman.

Janousek V., Moyen JF, Martin H., Erban V., Farrow C. (2016) Geochemical Modelling of Igneous Processes – Principles and Recipes in R Language. Springer-Verlag.

Gill, R. 2010. Igneous Rocks and Processes: A Practical Guide. Wiley-Blackwell.

Vernon, R. H., Clarke, G. L. (2008) Principles of metamorphic petrology. Cambridge University Press.

Vernon R.H. (2004) A practical guide to rock microstructure. (Cambridge University Press).

Higgins M.D (2006) Quantitative textural measurements in igneous and metamorphic petrology, Cambridge University Press.

Cobbing J. (2000). The Geology and Mapping of Granite Batholiths. Lecture Notes in Earth Sciences, 96. Springer, Berlin.


Other teaching material (lecture notes, scientific articles) will be made available online during the course (https://studium.unict.it/dokeos/2021/courses/21980/).

Open in PDF format Versione in italiano