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Advanced Courses in Life Sciences

1st Edition

Quantitative Stratigraphy

September 30th – October 4th, 2019, Barcelona (Spain)

Palaeontology and Archaeology

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Course overviewCourse Quantitative Stratigraphy

Stratigraphy is to place objects or events into geological or archaeological successions, and eventually to estimate their positions in time. Stratigraphy is fundamental to several sciences, but it is much more difficult than you might think!

In this course, we will look at a number of quantitative methods (computer stuff) which can be helpful in some of the most important branches of stratigraphy, especially biostratigraphy, chemostratigraphy, cyclostratigraphy, chronostratigraphy and stratigraphic correlation.

We will mainly use the software Past, but will also bump into a number of other programs.


Can Carol

C/ Font de la Reina, 5
08786 Capellades, Barcelona (Spain)

How to get there


September 30th – October 4th, 2019




32.5 hours on-site.

This course is equivalent to 2 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) at the Life Science Zurich Graduate School.

The recognition of ECTS by other institutions depends on each university or school.


Places are limited to 16 participants and will be occupied by strict registration order.

Participants who have completed the course will receive a certificate at the end of it.


Øyvind Hammer instructor for Transmitting Science

Dr. Øyvind Hammer
University of Oslo


Ana Rosa Gómez-Cano coordinator at Transmitting Science

Dr. Ana Rosa Gómez-Cano
Transmitting Science

Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno instructor at Transmitting Science

Dr. Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno
Transmitting Science


Graduate or postgraduate degree in Life or Earth Sciences. All participants must bring their own personal laptop.


Monday, September 30th, 2019.

  • Stratigraphic concepts, with emphasis on common problems. Propaganda against some current stratigraphic dogmas, which deserve nothing but contempt. Stratigraphic data types, basic sampling theory.
  • Plotting of stratigraphic logs along sections, wells or through time with Past, Timescale Creator and C2. (This is useful).

Tuesday, October 1st, 2019.

  • Simple statistical topics: Smoothing of log data, interpolation, regression, correlation, cross-correlation. Testing for trends. Analysing and plotting discrete events (statistical tests, histograms, kernel density) (this is a little boring).
  • Multivariate methods, especially for chemostratigraphy and biostratigraphy. Data reduction with PCA, NMDS and CA. Quantitative zonation with ordination and clustering methods.

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2019.

  • Some methods for handling absolute dates. Radiometric uncertainties, error propagation, Monte Carlo methods. Age models. Construction of age-depth plots with splines and Bayesian methods. Determining boundary ages. (This is serious and important).

Thursday, October 3rd, 2019.

  • Quantitative biostratigraphy with RASC, CONOP and Unitary Associations. (This is fun).

Friday, October 4th, 2019.

  • Cyclostratigraphy and time-series analysis. Spectral analysis with different methods (REDFIT, multitaper etc.), the interpretation of spectra (resolution, harmonics, sidelobes, modulation effects etc.), filtering. Wavelet analysis. (This is difficult).


  • Course Fee
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  • Early bird (until July 31st, 2019):
  • 545 *
    (436 for Ambassador Institutions)
  • Regular (after July 31st, 2019):
  • 680 *
    (544 for Ambassador Institutions)
  • This includes course material, coffee breaks and lunches (VAT included).
    * Participants from companies/industry will have an extra charge of 100 €.
  • Course Fee + Accommodation Package
  • {{content-1}}
  • Early bird (until July 31st, 2019):
  • 545 * + 350 = 895
    (786 for Ambassador Institutions)
  • Regular (after July 31st, 2019):
  • 680 * + 350 = 1,030
    (894 for Ambassador Institutions)
  • This includes course material, coffee breaks, transportation from and to Barcelona city, accommodation from Sunday to Friday, breakfasts, lunches and dinners (VAT included).
    * Participants from companies/industry will have an extra charge of 100 €.

You can check the list of Ambassador Institutions HERE. If you want your institution to become a Transmitting Science Ambassador please contact us at communication@transmittingscience.org.

Discounts (see Funding below) are not cumulative and apply only on the fee.

We offer the possibility of paying in two instalments (contact the course coordinators).


Accommodation Package

If you take the Accommodation Package you will be hosted in the Rural House Can Carol, in single-sex shared dormitories (2 – 4 people) with bathroom en-suite.

If the number of participants exceeds the available rooms at Can Carol, some of them could be accommodated in the Hotel Tall del Conill, by registration order. The hotel is at 10 minutes walking, although transport will be provided in the morning and after dinner. Lunches and dinners will be with the whole group.

A supplemental charge will be added if you prefer to stay in a single room.

Accommodation is included from Sunday (check-in) to Friday (check-out). Breakfast, lunch and dinner are also provided during the week, starting from the dinner of Sunday to lunch of Friday (included).

Other accommodation options

If you do not want the Accommodation Package, accommodation is available in places other than Can Carol: Where to stay near the Venue.

Rural House Can Carol

Rural House Can Carol (Capellades, Barcelona, Spain)

Rural House Can Carol

Rural House Can Carol (Capellades, Barcelona, Spain)

Rural House Can Carol

Rural House Can Carol (Capellades, Barcelona, Spain)


Course Schedule
  • Monday to Friday:
    • 9:30 to 13:30 Lessons.
    • 13:30 to 14:30 Lunch (included).
    • 14:30 to 17:30 Lessons.
Accommodation Package Schedule
  • Sunday:
    • 19:00 Meeting point in Plaza Catalunya (Barcelona) to take the bus to Els Hostalets de Pierola. If you are planning to arrive later, you can find more information on How to get there.
    • 20:00 Registration in the Hostel.
    • 20:30 Dinner.
  • Monday to Thursday:
    • 8:00 to 9:00 Breakfast.
    • 20:00 Dinner.
  • Friday:
    • 8:00 to 9:00 Breakfast.
    • 17:30 Meeting point in the Hostel to take the bus to Barcelona city.
    • 19:00 Arrival at Plaza Catalunya (Barcelona).

The schedule is approximate; it is possible that the content of one day may run into the next and a working day may be longer than advertised.



Former participants will have a 5 % discount on the Course Fee.

Furthermore, a 20 % discount on the Course Fee is offered for members of some organizations (Organizations with discount). If you want to apply to this discount please indicate it in the Registration form (proof will be asked later).

Unemployed scientists living in Spain, as well as PhD students based in Spain without any grant or scholarship to develop their PhD, could benefit from a 40 % discount on the Course Fee. If you want to ask for this discount, please contact the course coordinator. That would apply for a maximum of 2 places and they will be covered by strict inscription order.

Discounts are not cumulative and apply only on the fee, not to Accommodation Package or other options.


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