Course Objective

Students attending this course will gain knowledge and understanding
about mountain building processes (subduction, accretion, collision),
their consequences (metamorphism, syn- orogenic magmatism, and
sedimentary basin formation, etc. ), and the methods constraining those
processes such as microscopic analysis, thermochronology or numerical
Mutual relationships and feed- back relations of orogenic processes in
space and time are illustrated for different segments of orogens ranging
from the external to the core zones.
Furthermore, students will develop skills (1) to analyse, compare and
explain distinct features of orogenic structures, (2) to apply numerical
modelling as a tool to tackle orogenic processes quantitatively, and to
(3) critically assess and discuss relevant literature as well as
numerical modelling results.

Course Content

Key aspects of mountain building are discussed in the context of natural
examples like the Alpine mountain chain in Europe and in across-
disciplinary manner.
Specific topics are:
- The anatomy, tectonic development, and thermal evolution of convergent
continental margins, subduction and continental collision zones;
- Deformation, metamorphism and magmatism in axial zones;
- PTt- paths: observation, interpretation and numerical modeling;
- The interaction between orogens and sedimentary basins in internal and
external zones of orogens;
- The late stage evolution of orogens: modes of syn- orogenic extension,
orogenic collapse, and exhumation mechanisms;
- Real-world examples; European Alps, Andes, Himalaya.

The skills to use the acquired knowledge will be obtained using a case
study of one orogen (from microscopic observation to the techniques
required to constrain the T- t histories of various domains).

Teaching Methods

tuition Lectures (9 * 3 u 45 min), computer practical (4 * 3 hrs 45min),
assignments /self-study (12 * 3 hrs)

Method of Assessment

Exam (50%), Reports (20%), Essay – presentation – poster (20%)

Entry Requirements

BSc Geology


The course will be based on chapters from:
- "Geodynamics of the Lithosphere", 2nd ed. Kurt Stüwe, Springer 2007.
- "An introduction to igneous and metamorphic petrology", 2nd ed.,
Winter, Prentice Hall 2010. (available through GeoVUsie)
- Global Tectonics, 3rd ed., P. Kearey and F. Vine, Blackwell 2008.
- Orogenesis, 1st edition, M.R.W. Johnson, S.L. Harley, Cambridge 2012.

Selection literature for individual essay and presentation projects to
be announced on Canvas.

Target Audience

1st year MSc Earth Science Solid Earths

Recommended background knowledge

Petrology, structural geology, tectonics courses at the BSc level.

General Information

Course Code AM_450190
Credits 6 EC
Period P3
Course Level 400
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Science
Course Coordinator prof. dr. J.R. Wijbrans
Examiner prof. dr. J.R. Wijbrans
Teaching Staff prof. dr. J.R. Wijbrans
dr. F.M. Brouwer
prof. dr. W.P. Schellart

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Last-minute registration is available for this course.

Teaching Methods Seminar, Computer lab, Education
Target audiences

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