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Try it risk-free Discover how geologists study the layers in sedimentary rock to establish relative age.

Learn how inclusions and unconformities can tell us stories about the geologic past.

Geologists establish the age of rocks in two ways: numerical dating and relative dating.

In order to establish relative dates, geologists must make an initial assumption about the way rock strata are formed. sediments, which are deposited and compacted in one place over time.Relative dating cannot establish absolute age, but it can establish whether one rock is older or younger than another.Relative dating requires an extensive knowledge of stratigraphic succession, a fancy term for the way rock strata are built up and changed by geologic processes.There may be a layer missing in the strata, or a set of sedimentary rock on top of metamorphic rock.These interfaces between discontinuous layers of rock are called unconformities.As a member, you'll also get unlimited access to over 75,000 lessons in math, English, science, history, and more.

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