EESC 4949, Introduction to Seismology (2009)

Professor Göran Ekström

Course Summary

Presents an overview of the field of seismology, with a focus on elastic wave propagation in the Earth and Earth structure. Phenomenology and physics of seismic body waves, surface waves and Earth's normal modes. Seismic sources and seismometry. Seismological constraints on the structure of the Earth's interior and properties of the crust, mantle, and core.

Suggested preparation

Calculus, differential equations, Fourier series, college physics.


Class Format:

The course meeting time will mainly be used for informal lecture presentation. Additional section/lab time will be scheduled to introduce basic seismological software tools needed to complete some of the problem sets, and to provide some hands-on experience working with seismic data. There will be assignments and exams.


An Introduction to Seismology, Earthquakes, and Earth Structure, Seth Stein and Michael Wysession, Blackwell Publishing, 2003.


Restricted portion of course web site

Göran Ekström, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Columbia University