Which books are best suited for GATE geology

Especially as a freshman you are often overwhelmed by a sheer flood of material in the first semester. In retrospect, it often turns out that you could have saved yourself the cramming of the lecture slides if you had read a textbook instead.

The following article is about two books, of which you only need to have read one to acquire 95% of the knowledge in the first semester of the Bachelor in Geosciences.

Minimal effort in the first semester: basics of geology

Bahlberg and Breitkreuz are the names of the authors who, with the textbook “Fundamentals of Geology”, have created a condensed and easily understandable work that anyone who has graduated from high school in Germany can understand.

Content: Basics of geology - Bahlberg / Breitkreuz

The approximately 380 pages of the textbook are divided into three chapters.

  1. Exogenous dynamics
    In this chapter you will learn the basics of all geologically relevant processes that take place on the earth's surface. These include, for example, the processes of weathering rocks, their removal and deposition to sediments.
  2. Endogenous dynamics
    In the second chapter by Bahlberg and Breitkreuz, the basics of global plate tectonics and topics such as magmatism are dealt with.
  3. System earth
    The third chapter of the well-known textbook then deals with a cross-scale consideration of the various processes and finally also with the role that humans play in this system.

After reading this book, you will be well prepared for your first semester in geosciences.

Foundation stone for the Bachelor: General Geology

The textbook by Press and Siever is about twice the size of Bahlberg and Breitkreuz, but is very similar in structure to the book.

Basically, it can be said that “General Geology” by Press and Siever is not so well suited for a completely new approach to the whole subject, but for all those who decide to study after the first semester, it offers a perfect foundation for further literature.

General geology from Press / Siever is contemporary with colored illustrations and well thought-out diagrams.

Due to its great popularity, the book can often be found on the used market. Even in the newest edition. Basically, however, the textbook is one of the cheaper copies among the full-fledged textbooks at around € 80.


If you are looking for a good introductory textbook for the subject of geosciences, Bahlberg and Breitkreuz are definitely the right address. Easily understandable, well structured and very inexpensive for a textbook, the book conveys the material of the first semester in a well-linked way.

The low price and the quality as a quick reference work make it a compulsory component in the literature for the undergraduate degree.

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