Larger foraminifera are a particularly attractive biological system to date marine shallow water successions, to reconstruct shallow marine environments, and to experiment with evolutionary change over geological time. Larger foraminifera are the most important among the few groups of organisms that can be identified in random sections of cemented rocks to genus and eventually also to species level. However, the correct identification of the shell structures exhibited in their random sections is not easy and requires some fundamental training. For the use of this unique system, an International Training Course took place, from July 2nd-14th 2001, at the University of Savoie in Chambéry, France. The course, organised by Annie Arnaud-Vanneau (Université Joseph Fourier, Grenoble), consisted of 12 days lectures held by micropaleontologists coming from various european institutions. Lukas Hottinger (Natural History Museum of Basel, Switzerland) together with A. Arnaud, Esmeralda Caus (Universidad Autonoma de Barcelona, Spain), Martin Langer (Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn, Germany), and Ursula Leppig (University of Freiburg/Breisgau, Germany) provided the frontal teaching and assisted the participants in their practical work.Some participants presented particular aspects of their own work, stimulating contributions for discussion among the participants without interference by the teaching staff.
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