Physical Geology 

Geology 1001.3 

Spring 2018

Dr. Juan M. Lorenzo
Department of Geology and Geophysics


Lecture times

Tuesday, Thursday
  9.00 a.m. - 10.30 a.m. 
Old Howe-Russell Building Room 347

Office hours

Room 215 (Old Howe-Russell Building) 

Any day by appointment

For appointments and all correspondence, please use the following


Subject:  GEOL1001.3

T.A.: Abah P. Omale

Office :  Howe-Russell Building Room 215
Hours:    Fridays, 10 - 11.30 a.m., or by appointment


For appointments:
Subject:  GEOL1001.3



Required lecture textbook:

Understanding Earth by
Grotzinger, Jordan, Press, Siever, 5th edition, Freeman Publisher (shown above) or any later edition e.g.,  7th edition, by Grotzinger and Jordan from the Macmillan book publishing company.

Free Supplemental Instruction TBA

Academic Integrity, Accountability and Advocacy
What is LSU Commitment to Community?  What is Plagiarism?  What is Academic Misconduct?


Dates and times for exams, review sessions and quizzes
may change but are not generally subject to change.  Physical Geology (GEOL1001) satisfies the LSU General Education requirements for Natural Sciences (Physical) by describing energy in the earth system and by addressing the students' achievement of employing scientific and mathematical models, methods, and technology in the resolution of real-world problems.




Thu 11

Introduction to the Course

Tue 16

What is Science? An article by H. Quinn

How Geoscientists Think and Learn. An article by K. Kastens

Ch. 1 Earth System : Modern Theory and Practice of Geology

Notes (*.pptx)

Thu 18

Ch. 2 Plate Tectonics: Unifying Theory
Tue 23
Ch. 2 Plate Tectonics: Unifying Theory

Th 25

Plate Tectonics: Unifying Theory
Tue 30
Ch. 3 Earth materials: Minerals and Rocks




Thu 1


  Ch. 3 Earth materials: Minerals and Rocks

Tue 6

Ch. 4 Igneous Rocks: Solids from Melts Not all "granite" counter-tops are made of granite
Thu 8

Ch. 4 Igneous Rocks: Solids from Melts

Tue 13

Mardi Gras Holiday

Th 15

Midsemester  Exam 1 Review
Ch. 4 Igneous Rocks: Solids from Melts

Tue 20

Midsemester exam 1


Thu 22

Ch. 5  Sedimentation: Rocks Formed by Surface Processes

Tue 27

Ch. 5  Sedimentation: Rocks Formed by Surface Processes



Thu 1


Ch. 6 Metamorphism: Alteration of Rocks by Temperature and Pressure 
Class notes .pptx

Tue 6


Ch. 6 Metamorphism: Alteration of Rocks by Temperature and Pressure

Tue 8

Ch. 7 Deformation: Modification of Rocks by Folding and Fracturing

Class notes .ppt

Baton Rouge Fault Image

Tu 13 Midterm grades due
Tue 13

Ch. 7 Deformation: Modification of Rocks by Folding and Fracturing

Class notes .ppt

Baton Rouge Fault Image

Th 15


Ch. 8 Clocks in Rocks: Timing the Geologic Record  Class notes

Tue 20

Ch 13 Earthquakes

Class notes .ppt
Th 22 Midsemester  Exam 2 Review
Ch 13 Earthquakes
Sun 25- Sun, April 1 Spring break
March 25-29, 2018 in Nashville SAGEEP 2018



Tue 3

 Midsemester exam 2

Th 5

Evidence for water on mars    Just the picture

Tue 10


Th 12

Tue 17


Th 19


Tue 24

  Field trip to Brazil
Th 26
Review for final exam
Chs. 1-8, 12, 13

Sat. April 28  last day of classes



Mon 2


Exam week

Th May 3

*Final Exam 12:30-2:30PM

Room 347 OLD Howe-Russell Building

 Tue May 8  Final grades due

Geology is a wondrous and rigorous science that requires the same effort in study as any other basic science such as physics, chemistry or biology.  As such, I expect students to attend class, pay attention and participate in all class discussions.  I recommend strongly that students study independently 2 hours for every hour of material covered in class.  Excellent grades require excellent preparation.    

I expect students to read the book chapters covered in class and in advance of the class itself as well as readings I assign.  I expect students to study my online course notes (Powerpoint 2007: *.pptx and Powerpoint 2003 *.ppt) and to supplement their study.  It is a student's responsibility to come to class and stay informed on the material covered therein.  All material covered in class may be used for examinations.

Socially acceptable courteous behavior between students and with the instructor is expected at all times.  Activities that distract from learning are considered rude and strongly discouraged (cell phones ringing, texting, snoring, personal conversations, etc.)

University policy requires that all cheating be reported and that there be NO SMOKING or EATING in classrooms. I will respond to student e-mails if the subject  matter CAN NOT be dealt with during class or is NOT ALREADY explained in this syllabus.  Your e-mails MUST have the following Subject Line:  GEOL1001.3 or they may be filtered as spam by my e-mail client.

Exams and Homeworks: There are two (2) required mid-term exams and one (1) required final exam, as well as at least 4 extensive homeworks, in-class written quizzes as well in-class short oral  presentations. If you foresee a university-sanctioned absence and you provide me with the correct documentation in advance of the exams in question, I will give you a make-up exam. Homeworks will consist of written and illustrated answers to questions students will have to research on the internet or from distributed work files.

It is a student's responsibility to meet the university deadlines and requirements (e.g., Student Rights and Responsibilities) for seeking permission to request make-up exams.   I do not provide make-up projects for extra credit in order to improve letter grades.

Students are required to bring the following to all exams:  

* One large "scantron" sheet (NOT the skinny, 50-question scantron sheet), 

* one soft-lead pencil, one eraser, one sharpener, 

* one LSU ID.   (NOT SSN#)

Course Grades: Final letter grades are calculated using the results of one midterm exam plus one final exam.  

A-: 90.00-93.33, A: > 93.33-96.66, A+: > 93.66 -100%

B-: 80.00-83.33, B: > 83.33-86.66, B+: > 86.66 - 90.00%

C-: 60.00-66.66, C: >66.66-73.33, C+: > 73.33 - 80.00%

D-: 50.00-53.33%, D: >53.33-56.66, D+: > 56.66 - 60.00%

F (less than 50%)

Your final grade will be calculated as follows:  Best Midterm Grade (25%) + Final Exam Grade (35%) + in-class oral presentations (10%) + Homeworks (30%)

Only the better of the two midterm exam results will be used to calculate the final grade.  

The midterm exams contains 50 multiple choice or True/False questions.  In the final exam, there are at least 100 multiple choice or TRUE/FALSE questions.  Every exam can have questions from any of the material previously covered in class, with special emphasis on the most recent new material covered.  The final exam will cover all subject matter covered in class.

Remember that the final exam questions cover ALL course materials with emphasis on the latest unexamined sections.


There will be quizzes with answers given during class as examples of the type of exam questions you can expect. Quizzes will cover material seen in class within no less than a week after it is covered.

Grade Calculation

Example grade calculation: Midterm exam = 60; Final exam  = 60   Homeworks = 80 In-class oral presentations = 50

Final grade calculation = (60 x 0.25 + 60 x 0.35) + 80 x 0.3 +  50 x 0.1 = 15 + 21 + 24 + 5= 65  (C-)

Curving is used when deemed necessary by the instructor.

Numeric grades will be posted on Moodle as soon as all students have completed their exams and 

all the exams are graded.