The study of life during the geological past, the environment in which animals and plants lived in, as well as their evolution through geological time, are the objectives of the science of Palaeontology. The remains of these organisms, known as fossils, are now found in earth’s strata and prove the diachronic presence and evolution of life. Deciphering the various events imprinted in earth’s strata leads to the interpretation of Earth’s history and is the objective of the science of Stratigraphy. Stratigraphy consists the basic tool used in palaeogeographic reconstructions. Sedimentology on the other hand, uses numerous modern techniques in order to study the sedimentation processes and thus reconstruct the conditions under which the geological strata were deposited. This approach is also based on the observation of modern sedimentation processes, which allow for their reduction to the past. The collaboration of Palaeontology, Stratigraphy and Sedimentology leads to the complete knowledge of the evolution of organisms and environments through time, thus composing the history of the evolution of Earth from its creation to this day, known as Historical Geology.

The Department of Historical Geology & Palaeontology studies the scientific topics of Historical Geology, Stratigraphy, Palaeontology and Sedimentology, as well as many other more specialized topics, thus producing important scientific and educational work in the Faculty of Geology & Geoenvironment. These topics include:

All the above contribute to the knowledge concerning the evolution of life and biodiversity on the planet, the reconstruction of environmental conditions during the geological past, palaeogeography, climatic changes in older geological periods and their effect on living organisms, the use of microfossils as indices of environmental health in marine environments, monuments of Geological heritage. Palaeontological excavations are also conducted by our Department.

There is also the Laboratory of Historical Geology & Palaeontology and the Museum of Palaeontology & Geology.