Feb 24, 2024  
College Catalog 2023-2024 
College Catalog 2023-2024
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GEOL 1080 - Geology of Michigan

Credit Hours: 3.00

Prerequisites: None

A basic introduction to Michigan geology, including its minerals and rocks, fossils, scenic features and the processes that formed them, geologic history, and economic geology.

Billable Contact Hours: 3

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Outcome 1: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to describe how the Scientific Method relates to Geologic Features in Michigan.


  1. Describe the Bohr model of the Atom and know the common elements of the Earth’s Crust.
  2. Describe the Energy Cycles of the External and Internal forces that change the Earth’s Crust.
  3. Describe some of the basic Biological processes that affect the Sedimentary Rock Record.

Outcome 2: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to identify how the fundamental Principles of Geology relate to Geologic examples in Michigan.


  1. Identify the common rock-forming minerals found in Michigan.
  2. Identify the common rocks found in Michigan.
  3. Describe the Principles of Uniformitarianism, Original Horizontality, Superposition, and Cross-cutting Relationship.

Outcome 3: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to identify Michigan Sedimentological Processes.


  1. Describe the basic Sedimentary Processes that contribute commonly in Michigan to Erosion, Transportation, and Deposition of sediment.
  2. Identify some of the more common landforms in Michigan created by Sedimentary Processes.
  3. Identify the common Economic Resources related to Sedimentary Rocks.

Outcome 4: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to describe how the sequence of Geologic Events that have occurred in Michigan represent elements of Historical Geology.


  1. Identify the common sequence of Geologic Time (name of Eons, Eras, and Periods) and their relative time before present.
  2. Identify the common Geologic Events that occurred during common time periods and how those events effected the Geologic formation of parts of Michigan.
  3. Describe the common Geologic Resources found in different Geologic time periods.
  4. Describe the basic change in the Fossil Record as found in Michigan.

Outcome 5: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to describe how the basic elements of Structural Geology are present in Michigan surface and subsurface geologic features.


  1. Describe the difference between anticline and syncline folds and how those folds relate to structural domes and basins, particularly the Michigan Basin.
  2. Describe how folds can appear as common landforms when influenced by erosion.
  3. Describe Tectonic forces like mountain building that can change originally horizontal sedimentary beds to create folds and faults.

Outcome 6: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to provide a basic description of how Geologic studies in Michigan relate to concepts of Environmental Geology.


  1. Describe the Economic Geologic Resources that have been developed in Michigan.
  2. Describe briefly how some of the common Geologic Resources are developed and what environmental concerns this development creates.
  3. Describe the value of understanding Environmental Science values by studying Geology in Michigan.

  • Communication: The graduate can communicate effectively for the intended purpose and audience.
  • Critical Thinking: The graduate can make informed decisions after analyzing information or evidence related to the issue.
  • Global Literacy: The graduate can analyze human behavior or experiences through cultural, social, political, or economic perspectives.
  • Information Literacy: The graduate can responsibly use information gathered from a variety of formats in order to complete a task.
  • Quantitative Reasoning: The graduate can apply quantitative methods or evidence to solve problems or make judgments.
  • Scientific Literacy: The graduate can produce or interpret scientific information presented in a variety of formats.
CDO marked YES apply to this course:
Communication: YES
Critical Thinking: YES
Information Literacy: YES
Quantitative Reasoning: YES
Scientific Literacy: YES


  1. Introduction to Geology
    1. Minerals
      1. Identification
      2. Michigan Minerals
    2. Igneous Rocks and Processes
    3. Sedimentary Rock and Processes
      1. Geologic Principles
    4. Metamorphic Rocks and Processes
  2. Geologic Time
    1. Relative Age Dating Techniques
    2. Absolute Age Dating Techniques
    3. Geologic Time Scale
  3. Introduction to Michigan Geology
    1. The Precambrian Record in Michigan
    2. The Paleozoic Era Record in Michigan
    3. The Mesozoic Era Record in Michigan
    4. Glaciation and its Processes
    5. The Pleistocene Epoch Record in Michigan
      1. Glacial Landforms & Events
      2. The Glacial Great Lakes
    6. The Holocene Epoch Record in Michigan
      1. Shorelines
      2. Wind Deposition
      3. Streams
      4. Ground Water

Primary Faculty
Sadorski, Joseph
Secondary Faculty
Schafer, Carl
Associate Dean
Young, Randall
Pritchett, Marie

Primary Syllabus - Macomb Community College, 14500 E 12 Mile Road, Warren, MI 48088

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