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Learn to Identify Gems and Explore Their History


Gems and rocks have had a significant role in various cultures throughout history. Learn to identify local gems and rocks while studying their importance in history, art and traditions. Students will get an introduction to gems and will practice techniques for identifying common southwestern rocks and gems. We will explore and discuss the roles gems have played in different cultures over time. We will also investigate rocks and gems through a variety of activities, including opening geodes, polishing rocks, and making art and jewelry using gemstones. Students will also learn about the roles rocks play in ecosystems and about conservation efforts. The class provides an engaging introduction for students interested in pursuing further studies in geology and other Earth sciences.

What You Will Learn


Students in Gemology will:

  • Practice techniques for identifying common southwestern rocks and gems.
  • Learn about the significance gems and rocks have had in different cultures over time.
  • Understand the role certain rocks play in ecosystems.
  • Find out how some rocks and gems are threatened and understand ways to help conserve natural habitats in San Diego County.

Return to the Sally Ride Science online professional website here.

Note: Upon successful enrollment of a section, students will receive a confirmation email from our Student Services team. This email will include a link to an authorization form that is required to be completed within 72-hours of enrollment. 

Course Number: SCI-90046
Credit: 1.50 unit(s)

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