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MNG 401 - Introduction to Mining Operations

This is a sample syllabus.

This sample syllabus is a representative example of the information and materials included in this course. Information about course assignments, materials, and dates listed here is subject to change at any time. Definitive course details and materials will be available in the official course syllabus, in Canvas, when the course begins.


This course offers an introduction to mining operations and related issues.  The course will start with the role of minerals and mining in our daily lives and modern society.  The course examines various stages of mining including prospecting, exploration, development, exploitation, and reclamation.  Common unit operations in mining, mining equipment, and some of the auxiliary processes are covered.   Surface mining methods and surface mine development will be presented, as will the underground mining methods and the development of underground mines.


The objective of this course is to introduce students to mining operations through study of basic concepts and equipment that facilitate the extraction of mineral resources.  This includes learning about the stages of a mining project and life cycle of a mine, understanding the concepts of ore grades and reserves, mine development, mining methods, and unit operations that are essential to the operation of a mine.

Required Materials

The materials listed here represent those that may be included in this course. Students will find a definitive list in the course syllabus, in Canvas, when the course begins.

Optional textbook

Hartman, H. L., & Mutmansky, J. M. (2002). Introductory mining engineering. Hoboken, NJ: J. Wiley. ISBN: 0471348511

There is a copy of the book on reserve in the Earth and Mineral Sciences Library at University Park.  You can also purchase this book from SME (Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration) using your student member discount. It is recommended that you purchase a printed rather than electronic copy of the book.




We have worked hard to make this the most effective and convenient educational experience possible. How much and how well you learn is dependent on your attitude, diligence, and willingness to ask for clarifications or help when you need them. We are here to help you succeed. Please keep up with the class schedule and take advantage of opportunities to communicate with us and with your fellow students. You can expect to spend an average of 8 - 12 hours per week on class work.

Major Assignments

This course will rely on a variety of methods to assess and evaluate student learning, including:

  • Quizzes - 70% of total course grade
  • Comprehensive Final Exam - 30% of total course grade

Course Schedule

Course Schedule
1Introduction to the Mining Industry-
2Life Cycle of a Mine and Related MattersQuiz 1
3The Life Cycle of Mines and Related Matters-
4Prospecting and ExplorationQuiz 2
So You Think That You Want to Build a Mine?
Feasibility Studies
Quiz 3
6Mining MethodsQuiz 4
7Unit and Auxiliary Operations
Introduction to the Cycle of Operations
Auxiliary Operations - Supplemental Reading
Quiz 5
8The Quest for Continuous
The Big Bang
Quiz 6
9Surface MiningQuiz 7
10Mechanical Surface Mining Methods - Open Cast Mining & Related MethodsQuiz 8
11Aqueous Extraction Methods
Case Study - Phosphate Surface Mine
Quiz 9
12Underground MiningQuiz 10
13Mining by Unsupported MethodsQuiz 11
14Supported and Caving MethodsQuiz 12
15Course Wrap-UpFinal Exam