GEO9850 – Structural Geology and Basin Formation

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Changes in the course due to coronavirus

Autumn 2020 and Spring 2021 the exams of most courses at the MN Faculty will be conducted as digital home exams or oral exams, using the normal grading scale. The semester page for your course will be updated with any changes in the form of examination.

Please note that there may be changes in the form of examination for some courses taught Spring 2021. We aim to bring both the course description and the semester page of all courses up to date with correct information by 1 February 2021.

See general guidelines for examination at the MN Faculty autumn 2020.

Course content

The course focuses on the structural geology of the upper crust. Subjects covered are mainly brittle deformation in the development of tectonic provinces and associated sedimentary basins and related deformation processes and mechanisms. We will work in the lab with studies of and exercises on different structural geological objects, use of maps and remote sensing data, and there will also be 5-7 days of field training. PhD students will present a given assignment in a seminar as part of the course.

Learning outcome

After finishing this course, students have a comprehensive insight into:

  • Structures developed during mainly brittle deformation in the upper crust and the geometry/architecture of structures that develops during fracture and fault growth.
  • Analyses of various tectonic provinces (extension, strike-slip, contraction, diapirism) and their sedimentary basins.
  • Deformation mechanisms operating in faults and how they impact fluid flow.
  • Importance of kinematic indicators and fault dynamics.
  • Relationships between faults and earthquakes.

Admission to the course

PhD candidates from the University of Oslo should apply for classes and register for examinations through Studentweb.

If a course has limited intake capacity, priority will be given to PhD candidates who follow an individual education plan where this particular course is included. Some national researchers’ schools may have specific rules for ranking applicants for courses with limited intake capacity.

PhD candidates who have been admitted to another higher education institution must apply for a position as a visiting student within a given deadline.

Formal prerequisite knowledge

The course includes a compulsory field course and excursions. A health and safety course for safety in the field must be passed before you can go on these.

Overlapping courses


The course is taught intensively over several week-long modules through the semester (block-module teaching). Seminars and exercises of 3 hrs a week will cover the entire semester. Before the exam, the course is summed up by a seminar. As a PhD student, you present a given assignment in a seminar as part of the course. At least 80% of the exercises and seminars must be completed, and the field report must be approved.

The course has 5-7 days of compulsory fieldwork (field seminar) early in the semester.

Attendance at the first lecture is compulsory. Students who fail to meet, are considered to have withdrawn from the course unless they have previously given notice to the Student administration (

We reserve the right to change the teaching form and examination of the course in semesters where 5 or fewer students have been admitted.

General information about excursions at the Department of Geosciences.

As the teaching involves laboratory and/or fieldwork, you should consider taking out a separate travel and personal risk insurance. Read about your insurance cover as a student.


  • All compulsory activity must be approved in order for the candidate to take the final exam.
  • The written field report counts for 20%.
  • Final oral examination counts for 80%.
  • Both the written field report and the final examination must be passed individually in order to pass the course. 

With many students participating in the course, a written exam (3 hours) will replace the oral exam. This will be decided between the teacher and students.

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

It will also be counted as one of the three attempts to sit the exam for this course if you sit the exam for one of the following courses:

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

Subjects taught in English will only offer the exam paper in English.

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a pass/fail scale. Read more about the grading system.

Resit an examination

Students who can document a valid reason for absence from the regular examination are offered a postponed examination at the beginning of the next semester.

Re-scheduled examinations are not offered to students who withdraw during, or did not pass the original examination.

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) Jan. 17, 2021 7:14:03 PM

Facts about this course

Teaching language