Day School: Geology

Ref: C3740009

We will look at a great many different volcanoes and where they are located in the world. There will be a lovely collection of rocks and minerals from many locations for the group to examine and discover what information they ‘lock in’. We will use this information to be able to tell a lot about very ancient volcanoes and also about those that are active today. The tutor will give a demonstration using a computer and satellite technology to look at what volcanic activity is happening the day of the class. We can then explain what we see. We can also look at present sites to determine the likelihood of an eruption in the near future. What is the most dangerous volcano in the world? How do geologists know? The course will show you how.

Additional information about this course

Please note there is a correction. Lunch is not provided. End time: 16:30. This course is not supported by the Skills Funding Agency and does not have a fee waiver but concessions may be available - contact the Branch for further details.

Course aim

To provide an introduction to volcanoes - what they are, where they are and how they work. This will be a hands-on with real volcanic rocks and a trip round the world's best sites. The information may surprise you!

Who is the course for?

What topics will this course cover

We first take a look at igneous minerals and a variety of volcanic rocks - to learn how to identify them using a flow chart. There are very simple observations to be used to then lift information about that volcano from a simple rock. We go on to look at the variety of volcano shapes and forms around the world and can link this to their activity and eruption styles. Taking a look at some current action we can see what is erupting that day. What volcano have you been on holiday near? Find out more about it.

What will it be like?

WEA classes are friendly and supportive. You will be encouraged to work together with your fellow students and tutor. You will be asked to share your ideas and views in the class and work with the group to give and accept feedback in a supportive environment. The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you to be actively involved in your learning. You may be asked to undertake work to support your course outside of your class.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

1. Identify some common igneous minerals and volcanic rocks. 2. Recognise how shape relates to speicific activity styles. 3. Explain what goes into prediction and where active volcanoes are located.

How will I know I'm making progress?

You will have completed some flow charts and have information to take away that you understand!

What else do I need to know, do or bring?

A hand lens will be useful if you have one (tutor has some to use) and if you have a piece of rock you would like identified, then bring it along. We can use these as props.

Reading and information sources

Any book on volcanoes will be interesting, but pre-reading is not expected.

What could the course lead to?

A really good understanding of your future holiday destinations (even if confined to the UK where we have had many volcanoes in the past).

Download full course outline

Day School: Geology Course Outline


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2016
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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