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11 Best Geology Online Courses [Free + Paid]

The renowned universities in UK, USA and Canada are offering free and paid Geology courses for general public.

Geology is a broad subject covering multiple fields such as climate change, earthquakes, rock formation, petroleum exploration, and many more. Students choose a field according to their personal/professional interest. Currently, various renowned universities are offering online courses in different disciplines. Some of them are free and some are paid ones. Let’s have a glimpse of these courses.

1. Planet Earth …and You!

Offered by: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Campus [USA]

Credit Hours: 3

Fees: $10

The University of Illinois is offering this five weeks course under the supervision of Dr Stephen Marshak and Dr Eileen Herrstrom.

The University of Illinois is offering this course for beginners.

Course Content:

It’s all about volcanoes, mountain research, earth structure through ice ages, landsliding, human life evolution, earthquakes and the changes on the earth surface. Planet Earth includes Earthquakes in the first week and moves on with plate tectonics and ice ages in the second week. The third week covers Volcanoes and students learn about rocks and mineral resources in the fourth week. In the fifth week, they will research about energy resources.

Financial aid for students is also available. Students who can’t afford the fee can apply for the financial aid by clicking the financial aid link. They will complete an application form and the university will notify them once their application is approved.

This course is available online. Once you pay the fee, you will access the course materials. You can submit assignments on asking your teachers. Your course will start in December and ends in February.

Apply Before December 19 for free enrolment.

Apply Here

2. Oil & Gas Industry Operations & Markets

Offered by: Duke University [UK]

Type: Paid

Duke University, UK is offering this two weeks short course online for students. The course covers two natural resources Oil and Gas. It’s about the fundamental aspects of these two natural resources.  In the operations module, students will learn about the production of oil and gas. They will also learn the process of initial exploration to final transport of these two natural elements. In the second week, they will learn about the markets, cost of wells, seasonal fluctuations in prices and the impact of oil reserves on the prices. The participants will take part in group discussions regarding global markets to complete a final project.

Lincoln Pratson, Senior Gendell Professor of Energy & Environment is going to supervise the students in this short course. It’s for beginners in the Oil and Gas industry.

Once you enrol for this course, you will get access to program assignments, videos and quizzes. After completing assignments, you will get your teacher’s remarks and finally, you will get the certificate.

Students can get a full refund of their money within the first two weeks after their payment or at the beginning of the course only. Once the first session is over, they can’t demand a refund.

Apply before 29 December for free enrollment

Apply Here

3. Mountains 101

Offered By: University of Alberta [Canada]

Type: Paid

Fees: $15

It’s a long course that consists of 12 weeks. The students will study global Mountains, their structure and origin of famous mountain ranges. In the first lesson, they will learn about their basic structure and origin. In the second week, they will discuss why different mountains are located where they exist and how they are located here. They will learn the physical origin, building and genesis of mountains. The third week will be about mountains’ influence on climate and weather in different locations. In the fourth week, students will learn about the effects of high-altitude mountains on humans and the environment.

The fifth week will explain mountain hydrology and the ways. It will focus on the role of water moving through the mountain landscape and how glacial lakes change and affect mountain shapes. The sixth week explains the physical composition and process of glaciers and their movement. It also stresses their role in the modification of the landscape. The 8th week covers the snow avalanches, volcanoes and landslides. It also leads to stress on instability in mountain landscapes. In 9th and 10th weeks, students will complete their research work regarding the biodiversity of species living in mountain environments. They will explore extreme conditions like cold, snow and solar radiation.

The students will also learn about the physiological adaptations of animals living in mountains environment and their survival under extreme conditions. Two last modules will focus on how mountains are used and preserved? Furthermore, they learn about the effect of climate changes on these places.

Apply before 19 December for free enrolment

Apply Here

4. Dynamic Earth

Offered By: American Museum of Natural History

Type: Paid

Fees: $10

AMNH is offering this online course for beginners. The students can complete it in 5 weeks. In the first week, they will get the introduction and mystery of geologic time. They will learn how scientists study worldwide rocks and how they determine the history of the Earth. In the next week, they will learn the evolution of the Earth in the presence of oxygen in oceans and atmosphere. They will complete an assignment regarding their local geologic features.

In the third week, students will discuss how convection makes solid rocks to flow in the Earth’s mantle and how tectonic plates form mountains. In the fourth week, the main focus of students will be on Earthquakes. They will use multimedia teaching case to learn how scientists define and assess earthquakes. They will also study the earthquake risks in Bangladesh and other South Asian countries.

If you don’t want to continue this course, a full refund is offered by AMNH. Students can apply for a refund in the early days of the course. Refund is not valid if you enter the second week of course.

Apply Here

5. Natural Attenuation of Groundwater Contaminants

Offered By: Rice University [USA]

Fees: $5

The course duration is 4 weeks. Students can enrol before 19th December to waive off the enrollment fee. If you don’t want to continue, a full fee refund option is available. In one week, the student will spend 3 hours minimum to attend an online class.

In the first week, students will learn general information about the course and their subject. They will start with the evolving history and MNA features from 1994 to 2015. In the second week, they will follow a series of lectures to learn about the occurrence of biodegradation and its conditions. Their main focus will be the conditions that are conducive to faster degradation.

The course also focuses on Abiotic degradation principles and key reactions/minerals involved in this degradation process. Students learn the methods to determine the relevance of abiotic degradation at a specific place and their reactions. The final week will focus on the storage of contaminants and their diffuse in low permeability media like clay, limestone and silt, etc. The students learn about diffusion vs. dispersion and matrix diffusion.

Note: Refund is also available for students. If you don’t want to continue the course, in the first week, you can apply for a full fee refund.

Apply Here

6. Water in the Western United States

Offered By: University of Colorado Boulder

The course is offered in the English language for beginners. It consists of 6 weeks, 1-4 hours/week.

The first week covers the important water issues in the Western parts of America. It also prepares students for research regarding the science of hydrology. In the second week, they will learn how Western America ends up with various largest dams of the world and how the water allocation system works in this region. This module covers the history, culture and politics of water development in the western US. In the next week, students will research in ecology, hydrology, climate and other elements.

In the final module, the students will learn about the Colorado River Basin. The Colorado River is a vital source for more than 40 million people in Western America. The students will research its basin to explore different concepts to increase the water resources of this river.

The University of Colorado Boulder also offers a full refund to students who aren’t satisfied with course content. If you want to apply for a refund, you can fill “Refund” form in the first week of the course.

Apply before 19 December to get a free enrollment.

Apply Here

7. Spatial Analysis and Satellite Imagery in a GIS

Offered by: University of Toronto

Type: Paid

Duration: 4 Weeks

This short course covers the analysis of map data with the help of different data types. The students will discuss simple analysis methods and the use of Model Builder. Finally, you complete the project to try out new skills and tools.

Course Content:  In the first week, students will learn how to filter data with the help of queries. In the second week, they will analyze vectors in different ways. The discussion topic in the third week will be the remote sensing as a GIS data source. Final week covers Raster analysis by using various methods.

It’s a paid course and students will spend at least 2 hours every week on analysis. Don Boyes, Professor of Geography and Planning will supervise them throughout the course.

Apply Here

8. Big History: From the Big Bang Until Today

Offered by: University of Amsterdam

Type: Paid

Duration: 4 Weeks

The university offers this course online for beginners in Geological formation of Earth. The medium of instruction is not only English but also Italian and Spanish. The student will cover this course under the supervision of Esther Quaedackers, lecturer in Big History.

The students will go through the time period from the Big bang until today. The renowned scientists and scholars of the university take you to the complete cycle and discuss the key questions related to Big Bang theory. Everything around you becomes clear regarding the mechanism that has shaped everything around you. It polishes your skills to focus from smaller to bigger perspectives with the help of history approach.

Course Content:

The first week covers orientation and the history of cosmology. It reveals the big bang theory with all scientific facts. The second module explains how life was started on Earth in the form of a simple orgasm. In the third module, students learn about human life and its beginning on Earth. Finally, they will complete a written assignment to cover the complete chain of history from the Big Bang theory until now.

It’s a paid course and their fee is refundable. However, they can apply for a refund in the first week only.

Apply Here

Geology Free Courses

9. Our Earth: Its Climate, History & Processes

Offered by: University of Manchester

Type: Free

The course will start on 18th January and will continue up to 21st February. It’s for University staff, current students and the general public.

Every undergraduate student is eligible to enrol for this 5 weeks free course.

In the first week, the students will learn about the formation of blocks of Earth’s climate system. It also covers the basic structure of the climate. The second module covers the structure of solid earth. The students will learn the formation, evolution and processes of solid earth in detail. In the next module, the students research the climate system of the Earth, oceans, atmosphere and cryosphere, etc. In the final module, they will learn about different aspects of human life and its effects on the earth’s climate system. They will prepare written assignments to complete their course of study.

The University of Manchester offers this course free of cost for the general public. It’s for students who are interested in geology and Earth’s formation and effects on human life or climate system.

Apply Here

10. Imagining Other Earths

Offered By: University of Princeton

Type: Free

Our earth is the only place where life exists. Are we alone in this universe? This course discusses the chances of other piles of earth existing in this universe. It discusses the basic concepts of biology, Earth’s existence, planetary science and astronomy. Students speculate about another solar system in the universe. It’s a free course and does not offer a certificate on completion.

Course Content: Professor Spergel introduces the basic astronomy concepts and the outline of the course and its perspectives in the first module. The second module discusses the vastness of the universe and the structure of our solar system. It spotlights the new dwarf planets and the nearest stars. Students learn

In the third module, students research about the possibility of new piles of earth in the universe. The teacher will introduce the basic structure of biochemistry. It also helps detect the presence of life on Mars. The final module will throw light on the basic structure of different planets and their temperature. It introduces the idea of black body spectrum and luminosity. The students will calculate the distance of the habitable zone between planets and the presence of liquid water on different planets.

Apply Here

11. Extreme Geological Events

Offered By: Cardiff University the USA

The course will start on 17 January 2020 and will continue up to 3 weeks. It throws light on extreme factors constituting the current structure of the Earth.

In the first module, students will get an introduction of extreme factors like earthquakes, volcanoes, Tsunami and Cyclone, etc. In the second module, they learn how these factors contributed to shaping the current Earth. The third module will focus on the causes and effects of extreme events. The final module will throw light on their overall effect and the formation.

It’s a free course and general public, current students of Cardiff University and staff members can apply for it. There are no eligibility criteria except your high school certificate. However, the university doesn’t offer any certificate on completion.

Cardiff University doesn’t offer it directly. But students can get information regarding it from the link below.

Apply Here

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