Applied Field Techniques in Economic Geology

‘Improve a mechanical device and you may double productivity. But improve man, you gain a thousandfold.’

— TV  Series Writer
Narration by Khan Noonian Singh (Ricardo Montalban) in the Episode “Space Seed” (1967) of the TV Series Star Trek (1966-1969)


The “Applied Field Techniques in Economic Geology” (AFTEG) is a practical field course for students of geology, exploration geologists and geophysicists. The purpose of the course is to familiarise the student with the principal exploration methods and techniques used in glaciated terrains. However, the content of the course can be tailored to some extent according to your needs.

If not modified to your needs, the multidisciplinary AFTEG course focuses on the following themes:

  • Sampling and survey techniques commonly used in generative greenfields exploration campaigns in the glaciated terrains under cover
  • Geochemistry and the use of surficial deposits in ore exploration
  • Understanding the regional geological framework and large-scale tectonic regime
  • The dispersion mechanisms of elements in different glaciated environments
  • The use of geophysical survey methods
  • The use of the fine fraction and heavy minerals of surficial deposits and basal till (base-of-till, BOT sampling)

Course objectives also include:

  • Stimulating creativity in the chosen exploration solutions and strategies
  • Developing a high motivation for searching knowledge and learning the importance of critical reading
  • Increasing interaction between the exploration teams, universities, students and private sector companies

Background of the Course

The first AFTEG course was given as a five day-long intensive field course and workshop for the Finnish and international students of geology of the Oulu Mining School, University of Oulu, Finland, in the western margin of the Kainuu schist belt, Finland, in 16-20 September 2013. Our chief geologist was the inventor of the course and acted as the main organiser and teacher in the course. The course was participated by >10 Masters and PhD level students, and altogether five geoscientists as teachers. The direct feedback from the students was highly positive.