Petroleum Geology Course Content Overview
Before we look at the course overview, let’s understand what petroleum geology is. Petroleum geology refers to the study of the origin, migration, preservation, and location of petroleum resources. The discipline involves analyzing source rocks loaded with organic matter, geological structures, and sedimentary layers that allow petroleum accumulations to form in the subsurface, as well as the attributes of porous subsurface rock formations that store petroleum resources.
A petroleum geologist can pursue a career in the petroleum industry, state and federal government, or academics. Job opportunities exist in small and mid-size independent petroleum firms, major petroleum companies, national government laboratories, state geological surveys, universities, and high schools.
Petroleum Geology is an important field that requires comprehensive professional training. Our Petroleum Geology Course provides you with broad knowledge about petroleum geology and introduces you to various geological concepts useful in the oil and gas industry.
This course includes the following lessons. Some popular lessons can be purchased individually* (see below to enroll in individual lessons).
- The Global Energy Marketplace*
- The History of Extraction*
- Hydrocarbons and Petroleum Geology*
- Petroleum Systems*
- Hydrocarbon Exploration
- Leasing and Permitting
Each of the six lessons encompasses several topics to sharpen your knowledge and technical know-how. To create this course, we worked with our team of highly qualified instructors, including faculty members at various leading universities and professionals with diverse technical, regulatory, and policy backgrounds.
Global Energy Marketplace*
This lesson covers the fundamental aspects of energy and how it affects our everyday lives. The lesson will take you across various geopolitical landscapes and global energy resources and how they interact with today’s society. The lesson starts by defining energy and explains the primary types of energy. You’ll also learn about measuring energy and the supply and demand aspects of the global energy equation through interactive charts and graphs. Other topics covered in this lesson include Oil Production and Consumption, Natural Gas Production and Consumption, and Global Coal Production. By the time you’re through with this first lesson, you’ll have an idea of the current situation and the future trends in the oil and gas industry.
The History of Extraction*
Humans have been using natural products for heat and light for millennia. They started with resources that were easy to find and collect, like dung and wood, and gradually worked up to much more energy-dense resources like tight oil and shale gas that require great expense and time to acquire.The second lesson of our Petroleum Geology Course takes you back to where it all started, walking you through the history of the oil and gas industry to today’s current situation. The four-topic lesson will introduce you to the concepts of extraction and combustion and explore a few case studies of oil fields, such as the East Texas Oil Field. The lesson ends with a brief look into oil and gas regulation.
Hydrocarbons and Petroleum Geology*
The Earth is a dynamic system, millions of years old, whose surface is always changing and upon which organisms of untold multitudes have lived and died. The effects of weather, erosion, climatic changes, and tectonic movement, among many factors, have produced the world on which we all live today. The way this dynamic system has evolved is responsible for geological stores of hydrocarbons that humans now seek to extract and use to meet our energy demands. The Hydrocarbons and Petroleum Geology lesson introduces you to basic hydrocarbon chemistry, introductory overview of geology and the major types of rocks, stratigraphy, and sedimentary basin formation. You’ll also learn something about plate tectonics and its contribution to petroleum resources.
This four-topic lesson takes you through essential elements necessary to understand the various aspects of a petroleum system. A petroleum system is a self-contained collection of geologic formations that has produced oil, allowed it to migrate, and trapped it in place until the present. Since each of these steps requires a very specific set of geologic conditions, complete petroleum systems are relatively uncommon. In this lesson, you’ll learn how geologists explore the earth to find such a perfect ordering of events for conventional and unconventional petroleum resources. Key concepts covered include the elements and processes of a petroleum system, such as source, reservoir, seal, trap, generation, migration, accumulation and preservation.
This comprehensive 12-topic lesson seeks to give you a basic understanding of the complex processes involved in searching for oil and natural gas resources. You’ll get a glimpse of the maps and data types that help geologists find key elements of a petroleum play, such as geological structures, that may eventually evolve into an exploration prospect. Some of the topics covered in this lesson include mapping, data collection and compilation, geological structures, geophysical techniques, and reserve estimation.
Leasing and Permitting
Once an exploration company has found a promising reservoir or decided to develop a well within an existing oil or gas play, it's time to move on to the leasing and permitting stage of development. Leasing gives a company the property rights to extract oil and gas from the region of interest, while permitting gives the company legal rights to move forward with extraction operations. Various statutes and regulations govern leasing and permitting for oil and gas development in the United States. In the final lesson of our Petroleum Geology Course, you’ll learn about various components of a lease, agencies that issue permits, the process for acquiring a permit, and other fundamental aspects of leasing and permitting.
By the time you complete the Petroleum Geology course, you’ll have a basic understanding of what usually happens before petroleum drilling. Each lesson has a self-assessment at the end, allowing you to ingrain the information in your mind and get ready for the next lesson.View Complete Course Contents
Who Should Take This Course?
Professionals working in a variety of energy-related careers (e.g., engineers, geoscientists, attorneys, accountants, managers, regulatory personnel, policymakers) know how important it is to stay current and up-to-date with the latest technology and advancements in the oil and gas sector. Students have a critical need to gain a solid foundation of industry fundamentals and distinguish their future college and/or employment applications. Educators want to present a broad perspective of the technical solutions within the oil and gas industry to their students, highlighting the diverse nature of careers and opportunities within the energy sector.