Geology 105

University of Mississippi
[See UM Catalog for Description]

3 credit hours

Instructor Information:

Dr. Inoka Widanagamage

Instructor name:
Dr. Inoka Widanagamage

Instructor Information:
My research goals intersect among trace metal geochemistry/isotope geochemistry and bio-geochemistry of environments. My goal as a scientist is to investigate how the microbial world affects and drives metal cycling in both modern and ancient environments. My overarching research interests revolve around the interactions between microbial communities, their geochemical environments and the resulting modifications of the rock substrate and other aspects in environmental geochemistry.

Office: 118 D Carrier Hall
Office Phone: 662-915-2154

Contact Information:

If you have questions concerning the content of the course, you may contact the instructor directly using the Email Your Instructor link in the Lessons or Content page. NOTE: Whenever sending email, please be sure to indicate your course title and number in the subject line. You can expect a response within 72 hours, although it may be longer on weekends. Many instructors reply within 24 hours.

For lesson or test administration issues, please

The University of Mississippi
Division of Outreach and Continuing Education
P. O. Box 1848
University, MS 38677

contact the iStudy department:

Phone: (662) 915-7313, toll-free (877) 915-7313
Fax: (662) 915-8826

Course Description

This course introduces you to basic concepts and principles of physical and environmental geology, focusing on Earth's materials and processes. The course will provide you with information on natural resources such as minerals, water, soils, and petroleum, and on natural hazards such as earth quakes, volcanic eruptions and floods. Special attention will be given to understanding the relationships between natural resources and pollution, where you will learn how to address environmental issues scientifically. Also, you will have a better understanding of environmental management as it is related to geologic environment in areas such as waste management, environmental health, medical geology, global change, and environmental assessment.

Textbook Information:

Textbook information will be provided upon enrollment in your iStudy course.

Course Objectives:

Upon completion of this course, you will have the ability to:

  1. Understand the significance of natural resources such as minerals-rocks, soils, water
  2. Understand the importance of natural hazards
  3. Identify environmental problems and potential solutions
  4. Identify environmental health issues. Understand the global climate change and effects

Course Outline:

This course consists of 12 instructional lessons and 4 proctored examinations.

You MUST take the syllabus quiz within 2 weeks of enrolling or you will be dropped from the course. NOTE: you must pass the Syllabus and Orientation Quiz for the course materials to appear on the Lessons page.


Reading Assignments

Due for Grades

Pacing guide to complete the course in a semester

Start Here

*You MUST complete the syllabus quiz as soon as you have access to your Blackboard course. This is mandatory to verify your attendance.*NOTE: you must pass the Syllabus and Orientation Quiz for the course materials to appear on the Lessons page.

Syllabus Quiz




Discussion board

Week 1


Chapter 1: Philosophy and Fundamental Concepts

Lesson assignment and quiz

Week 2


Chapter 2: Plate Tectonics

Lesson assignment and quiz

Week 3 


Chapter 3: Minerals and Rocks

Lesson assignment and quiz

Week 4

Course Exam 1

Covers chapters 1-3

To be scheduled
and completed
before proceeding

End of Week 4 


Chapter 4: Ecology and Geology
Chapter 6: Earthquakes

Lesson quiz

Week 5 


Chapter 5: Natural Hazards
Chapter 7: Tsunamis
Chapter 8: Volcanoes

Lesson assignment and quiz

Week 6 

Course Exam 2

Covers chapters 4-8

To be scheduled
and completed
before proceeding

Week 7 


Chapter 9: Rivers and Flooding

Lesson quiz

Week 8 


If you are a semester student, you must reach the midpoint of your course by the date specified in your information.

If you are a Flex UM student, you CANNOT WITHDRAW from this course after the lesson has been submitted.

All lesson assignments or exams needed to reach the midpoint of the course

The exact date semester students are required to reach the midpoint is specified in your information.


Chapter 10: Mass Wasting

Lesson assignment

 Week 9


Chapter 11: Coastal Erosion
Chapter 12: Impact of Extraterrestrial Objects

Lesson quiz

 Week 10

Course Exam 3

Covers chapters 9-12

To be scheduled
and completed
before proceeding

End of Week 10 


Chapter 13: Water Resources

Lesson quiz

Week 11 


Chapter 14: Water Pollution

Lesson quiz

Week 12 


Chapter 15: Mineral Resources and the Environment

Lesson quiz

Week 13 


Chapter 16: Energy Resources
Chapter 17: Soil and Environment

Lesson quiz

Week 14 

Final Exam

Comprehensive exam from all chapters

All course work must be submitted and graded before taking the final exam. 

Week 15 


90 - 100% = A
80 - 89% = B
70 - 79% = C
60 - 69% = D
Below 59% = F


You must submit the lessons required to take the course exam(s). Lessons required but not submitted will receive a grade of zero. For the final exam, all coursework must be submitted and graded.