Frederick K Lutgens Essentials of geology

ISBN 13: 9780675098458

Essentials of geology

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9780675098458: Essentials of geology
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Building on the tremendous reception to its parent volume, Earth 8th edition, the same groundbreaking media package is now integrated into the brief version of the best-selling introductory physical geology volume. This eighth edition of Essentials of Geology represents a thorough revision, yet retains the hallmarks readers have come to expect from Tarbuck and Lutgen. Reader friendly writing style, carefully crafted illustrations by Dennis Tasa that are both geologically accurate and visually appealing, and updated coverage of the most recent geologic events. The volume provides an introduction to geology covering minerals, igneous rocks, volcanoes and other igneous activity, weathering and soil, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks, mass wasting, running water, groundwater, glaciers and glaciation, deserts and wind, shorelines, the ocean floor, earthquakes and earth's interior, plate tectonics, mountain building, geologic time, and earth history. For individuals interested in an introduction to geology.

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From the Publisher:

This concise, nonquantitative text has been acclaimed through four previous editions. Essentials of Geology presents a timely, informative and easily accessible survey of basic topics in physical geology. Clearly written in straightforward nontechnical language, this text will be easily understood by students with little or no previous college-level science. Highly accurate and extremely current, this text concludes with two chapters treating historical geology and offers an excellent treatment of environmental issues throughout the text.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

The Eighth Edition of Essentials of Geology, like its predecessors, is a college-level text for students taking their first and perhaps only course in geology. The book is intended to be a meaningful, nontechnical survey for people with little background in science. Usually students are taking this class to meet a portion of their college's or university's general requirements.

In addition to being informative and up-to-date, a major goal of Essentials of Geology is to meet the need of beginning students for a readable and user-friendly text, a book that is a highly usable tool for learning the basic principles and concepts of geology.

Distinguishing Features


The language of this book is straightforward and written to be understood. Clear, readable discussions with a minimum of technical language are the rule. The frequent headings and subheadings help students follow discussions and identify the important ideas presented in each chapter. In the Eighth Edition, improved readability was achieved by examining chapter organization and flow, and writing in a more personal style. Large portions of several chapters were substantially rewritten in an effort to make the material more understandable.

Illustrations and Photographs

Geology is highly visual. Therefore, photographs and artwork are a very important part of an introductory book. Essentials of Geology, Eighth Edition, contains dozens of new high-quality photographs that were carefully selected to aid understanding, add realism, and heighten the interest of the reader.

The many new and revised pieces of art help to illustrate ideas and concepts even more clearly and realistically than before. The art program was carried out by Dennis Tasa, a gifted artist and respected Earth science illustrator.

Focus on Learning

To assist student learning, every chapter opens with a series of questions. Each question alerts the reader to an important idea or concept in the chapter. When a chapter has been completed, three useful devices help students review. First, a helpful summary—The Chapter in Review—recaps all of the major points. Next is a checklist of Key Terms with page references. Learning the language of geology helps students learn the material. This is followed by Questions for Review, which helps students examine their knowledge of significant facts and ideas. Each chapter closes with a reminder to visit the Website for Essentials of Geology, Eighth Edition ( It contains many excellent opportunities for review and exploration.

Maintaining a Focus on Basic Principles and Instructor Flexibility

The main focus of the Eighth Edition remains the same as in the first seven—to foster student understanding of basic geological principles. As much as possible, we have attempted to provide the reader with a sense of the observational techniques and reasoning processes that constitute the discipline of geology.

The organization of the text remains intentionally traditional. Following the overview of geology in Chapter 1, we turn to a discussion of Earth materials and the related processes of volcanism and weathering. Next, we explore the geological work of gravity, water, wind, and ice in modifying and sculpting landscapes. After this look at external processes, we examine Earth's internal structure and the processes that deform rocks and give rise to mountains. Finally, the text concludes with chapters on geologic time and Earth history. This organization accommodates the study of minerals and rocks in the laboratory, which usually comes early in the course.

Realizing that some instructors may prefer to structure their courses somewhat differently, we made each of the chapters self-contained so that they may be taught in a different sequence. Thus, the instructor who wishes to discuss earthquakes, plate tectonics, and mountain building prior to dealing with erosional processes may do so without difficulty. We also chose to introduce plate tectonics in Chapter 1 so that this important and basic theory could be incorporated in appropriate places throughout the text.

More About the Eighth Edition

The Eighth Edition of Essentials of Geology represents a thorough revision. Every part of the book was examined carefully with the dual goals of keeping topics current improving the clarity of text discussions. Based on feedback from reviewers and students, we believe we eve succeeded.

Here are some examples of what is new in the Eighth Edition of Essentials of Geology.

  • Fourteen of the special-interest boxes are new. Some highlight recent geologic events, such as the devastating earthquake near Ismit, Turkey, in 1999 (Box 15.2). Others are examples that help develop an awareness of Earth as a system, such as Box 6.1, "The Carbon Cycle and Sedimentary Rocks." Still other new boxes focus on environmental issues and on how geologists study our planet.
  • Chapter 1, An Introduction to Geology, offers a new discussion of "The Science of Geology," and revised and expanded treatment of "Earth's Internal Structure." The section on the "Dynamic Earth" is a stronger, more complete first introduction to plate tectonics.
  • Chapter 3, Igneous Rocks, and Chapter 7, Metamorphic Rocks, have been significantly revised, rewritten, and reorganized. These chapters now provide stronger technical explanations and easy-to-follow discussions.
  • Much of the material in Chapter 4, Volcanoes and Other Igneous Activity, is new. The revision includes expanded treatment of volcanic structures, volcanic hazards, calderas, and the relationship between plate tectonics and igneous activity. These discussions are now clearer and organized in a more logical manner.
  • Some of the chapters dealing with external processes have new discussions. Examples include "Causes and Types of Floods" (Chapter 9) and "Interactions Between Groundwater and Streams" (Chapter 10).
  • Rewritten and updated discussions on "Intensity Scales" and "Magnitude Scales" appear in Chapter 15, Earthquakes and Earth's Interior.
  • Chapter 16, Plate Tectonics, has a reorganized and revised section entitled "Plate Tectonics: The New Paradigm" and completely revised and rewritten sections on "Divergent Plate Boundaries" and "Continental-Continental Convergence." The chapter also includes a new discussion of "Measuring Plate Motion" and a revised look at "The Driving Mechanism."
  • Chapter 17, Mountain Building, offers clearer, more logical organization, as well as new material on "Mountain Building at Convergent Boundaries" and "Accretion of Foreign Terranes."

The Teaching and Learning Package

The authors and publisher have been pleased to work with a number of talented people who produced an excellent supplements package. This package includes the traditional supplements that students and professors have come to expect from authors and publishers, as well as some new kinds of supplements that involve electronic media.

For the Student

Geode III CD-ROM. Each copy of Essentials of Geology, Eighth Edition, comes with GEODe III, by Ed Tarbuck, Fred Lutgens, and Dennis Tasa of Tasa Graphic Arts, Inc. GEODe III is a dynamic program that reinforces key concepts by using animations, tutorials, and interactive exercises. This new version has been updated and reorganized to provide content that more closely correlates to the text's content. A special GEODe III icon appears throughout the book wherever a text discussion has a corresponding GEODe III activity. This special offering gives students two valuable products (GEODe III and the textbook) for the price of one.

Companion Website. The Website, specific to the text, contains numerous review exercises (from which students get immediate feedback), exercises to expand one's understanding of geology, and resources for further exploration. This Website provides an excellent platform from which to start using the Internet for the study of geology. Please visit the site at

For the Professor

A wealth of valuable teaching tools are available.

Instructor's Manual. Written by Kenneth Pinzke of Southwestern Illinois College, the Instructor's Manual is intended as a resource for both new and experienced instructors. It includes a variety of lecture outlines, additional source materials, teaching tips, advice about how to integrate visual supplements (including the Web-based resources and GEODe III), and various other ideas for the classroom. Also included in every chapter are a wide variety of test questions.

Test Item File. Averages more than 100 multiple-choice, true/false, and short-answer questions per chapter.

Transparencies. Includes more than 300 transparencies, including every Dennis Tasa illustration from the text.

Slides. Includes 150 photos, many from geologist and professional photographer Martin Miller.

Digital Image Gallery for Interactive Teaching DIGIT CD-ROM. All illustrations from the text, the slide-set images, animations from GEODe III, and many text photos in high-resolution JPEG files that can be easily imported into PowerPoint®.

PowerPoint®lecture presentations. Ken Pinzke and Stan Hatfiefd of Southwestern Illinois College have created compelling, heavily illustrated PowerPoint lecture presentations for each chapter of this text. The presentations are fully customizable or suitable for use as provided. They can be found on the Digital Image Gallery (DIGIT) CD-ROM, in the appropriate chapters.

Prentice Hall Custom Test CD-ROM. Available for Mac and Windows.

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