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An Introduction to Mining and Mineral Processing

An Introduction to Mining and Mineral Processing

Areas of Study: Mining

Qualifies for CMS

Premium Peer-Reviewed

A non-technical introduction to the basic concepts of mineral exploration, ore extraction, mineral processing, waste management, mining economics and the future of mining, with numerous examples, figures and images of mining. *** This is a premium course which has been peer-reviewed by a committee appointed by the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) and the Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration (SME).


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  • Fee for Certification:
  • CAD 197.00
  • Completion:
  • 20 days
  • CEUs:
  • 0.8 (8 PDHs) (SAIMM: 1 CPDs)

Course Summary


This course provides a non-technical introduction to the basic concepts of mineral exploration, ore extraction, mineral processing, and mine waste management, with numerous examples, figures and images of mining. Also included are some key aspects of the economics of a mining and mineral processing operation.

An Introduction to Mining and Mineral Processing is for anyone who finds themselves working in the mining industry and needs a broad understanding of the industry without the technical details. Examples include geologists, chemists, engineers (except perhaps mining engineers), administrative staff, investors, accountants and suppliers.


The presentation is pictorial and conceptual in nature, and follows a light, easy-to-read format. The course comprises 21 short sessions, each of approximately 15 minutes viewing duration, plus five interactive reviews that confirm the viewer's achievement of learning objectives. The total duration of the course is approximately eight hours.

Learning Outcomes

  • Discuss the mining industry and mining issues with confidence.

Recommended Background

  • High school science

Dr. Scott Dunbar

From 1975 to 1996 Dr. Scott Dunbar worked for various engineering consulting organizations. His experience includes mining exploration, geotechnical engineering, mine design, design of tailings dams, water resources engineering and hydroelectric engineering. He has worked on projects in Canada, the United States, Central and South America, Iran, Africa, and China.

In January 1997, he joined the Department of Mining Engineering at the University of British Columbia (UBC). He has taught courses in Mine Economics, Mine Waste Management, Mine Design, Management Science, and Simulation. He was the founding director of the Integrated Engineering program, an undergraduate interdisciplinary engineering program with a focus on engineering design methods, teamwork in design, independent learning, and communication skills. He is now the head of the Department of Mining Engineering.

Scott's research interests are in advanced mining and mineral processing methods, and the basic question: what will a mine look like 50 to 100 years from now? In collaboration with members of the Centre for Blood Research and the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at UBC, he has been working on applications of biotechnology to mineral separation. He also does research in project economics, mining construction, and mineral processing.

Scott and his wife Petra enjoy skiing, hiking, cycling, and remodelling their house. Sons Blake and Camden and daughter Enja are a constant source of entertainment.


  • High School: United World College of the Atlantic, Wales, U. K. 1965-1968
  • British Advanced Levels: Math, Physics, Chemistry, and French
  • B.Sc. Geophysics (Honours), University of British Columbia, 1972
  • M.Sc. Geophysics, University of Toronto, 1973
  • Ph.D. Civil Engineering/Geophysics, Stanford University, 1977

  • Registered Professional (Geophysical) Engineer in B. C., Canada
  • Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

  • English: fluent
  • Spanish: speak and read
  • French: read and understand

Anon. | 2014
Overall, the course is a good introduction to the mining industry.
KA | 2007
Outstanding course.
Anon. | 2015
I would like to appreciate frankly all I have learned in this course as is the course of my favorite and I like to proceed it to the next level if the possibility is there. Thanks.
Anon. | 2015
Please keep up the good work. Very helpful training for the mining trade and career.
Anon. | 2015
I really liked the use of the case studies to illustrate examples (tailings incidents).
IM | 2015
The course was informative.