Purpose of Collection:

For concrete examples of our collections in action, please visit our Earth Sciences subject guide.

Academic Departments & Programs Supported:

Themes/Subject Coverage

Coverage in the following fields supports undergraduate instruction:

  • General Geology
    • Earth’s resources, geologic time, geochronology (carbon dating), evolution of the earth and human origins, natural hazards, mapping
  • Mineralogy and Petrology
    • Petrology, geochemistry, crystallography, study of ore deposits, gemology, volcanology
  • Historical Geology
    • Quaternary geology, paleontology, micropalaeontology, precambrian geology, dinosaurs, vertebrate paleontology and paleoecology
  • Structural Geology
    • Plate tectonics, geodynamics, and earth crust, earthquakes and mountain belts
  • Hydrology
    • Hydrogeology, permafrost hydrology
  • Economic Geology
    • Coal and petroleum, study or ore deposits
  • Rock and Soil Mechanics
    • Geotechnical mechanics, geo-technique
  • Oceanography
    • Bathymetry, sea floor geology
  • Sedimentology and Stratigraphy
    • Carbonate and clastic sedimentology

Coverage of the following fields supports graduate instruction:

  • Geophysics
  • Economic Geology
  • Glaciology
  • Geomorphology
  • Engineering Geology
  • Hydrogeology
  • Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology
  • Geochemistry
  • Volcanology
  • Sedimentary Petrology
  • Paleontology

Coverage of the following should be up to the research level:

  • Periglacial and Glacial Environments
    • Including Pleistocene permafrost and permafrost hydrology
    • Isotope Geology
    • Geophysics
    • Tectonophysics
    • Petrology (Metamorphic and Igneous)
    • Volcanology
    • Geochemistry (Pure and Applied)
      • including radioisotope geochemistry
    • Petroleum Geology
    • Mineralogy
      • including crystallography
      • experimental mineralogy
    • Paleontology
      • including micropaleontology, microfossils and paleobiology, vertebrate paleontology and paleoecology
    • Sedimentology
      • including carbonate sedimentology, glacial sedimentology, sedimentary systems

Selection Guidelines






English is the primary language of the collection. Works published in other languages are purchased very selectively and at the specific request of faculty.


Books, journals, reprints, maps, data sets, government documents in print, online and microform formats.

Non-periodic technical publications of the following groups (proceedings of symposia, etc.)

  • American Association of Petroleum Geologists
  • Geology Society of America
  • Canadian Association of Petroleum Geologists
  • Geological Association of Canada
  • Ontario Association of Geomorphologists
  • Society of Economic Geologists
  • American Geophysical Union
  • Society of Exploration Geophysicists
  • American Geological Institute
  • Geological Society of London

Collected selectively: Dissertations/theses, translations, popular material, videos, and faculty-requested undergraduate introductory textbooks only


  • Guidebooks of regions outside Canada (except if they belong to a multi-volume set).
  • Short course notes, notes of field trips, laboratory notes, laboratory identification tools.
  • Publications belonging to a numbered series in foreign languages.
  • Monographs of a numbered series published by research institutions. They are usually small and highly specialized.

Additional Collection Information

Related programs/areas of cooperation

  • Canadian Museum of Nature
  • Department of Biology
  • Department of Chemistry
  • Department of Geography and Environmental Studies
  • Natural Resources Canada, Earth Sciences Sector, Geological Survey of Canada
  • University of Ottawa

Related Subject Profiles

Content last reviewed: