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Geoscientist Online

Map Interpretation for Structural Geologists

dgykThe concept of this short and simple book is to provide the autodidact student of geological maps with exercises in the use of strike lines, with a view to resolving exam-grade structural and engineering problems.

The ‘text’ is very brief, to the point, almost in minimalist note form.  The black and white maps used are mostly extracts from earlier books of map construction, with superimposed coloured overlays showing how the strike lines and dips have been inferred.  Thus the purpose is to provide worked examples, so that the student rehearses the skill of strike line construction on increasingly complex problems, hence the need for the use of three colour printing.

That would be all that needs to be said about this very short and focused book, except that the pedagogy depends upon the following constraints; that the student has already read a good textbook on structural geology, is conversant with the technical jargon and has already worked through a foundation course on geological maps.

The shortcomings of the book are equally simple; because of the much-abbreviated explanations, the text is not developmental or even pleasing to read.  Self-learners may even at times be left scratching their heads with puzzlement.  One example on page nine shows a graphical derivation of true dip, with no explanation.  The illustration appears on the face of it to be obvious, until we then see later examples in the rest of the book, which do not appear follow the same pattern of the illustration, leaving the student high and dry.

One further example is the frequent referral to solutions which have been inferred from ‘stereonet calculation’ without any further reference or back-up to assist the student further.  This all lends a rather niggardly feel to the presentation which the authors probably assume is self-explanatory.

However all the 40 examples are actually well-tried classics and they do work, so the basic information is there to be worked at.

In short, the treatment would suit an intermediate to advanced student preparing for a structural geology exam, or a working geologist who needs to refresh the method.  However the price does imply that is was a short print-run and may therefore only be available only in specialist libraries.

Reviewed by Arthur Tingley

MAP INTERPRETATION FOR STRUCTURAL GEOLOGISTS by N BOSE and S MUKHERJEE 2017 Published by: Elsevier [paperback, pp120 ] ISBN 9780128096819 £100. W: www.elsevier.com.