History of geological science at the Lviv National University may be divided into 5 periods. First three periods were connected with the philosophical-natural sciences. First structural unit of the geological profile, that appeared, was a mineralogical museum. It should be mentioned, that there are now some notes about mineralogical collection existence during the time of the Jesuit Academy. We have testifying of the fact, that at the time of the University foundation, there were astronomic observatory, botanical garden and mineralogical collection available. This fact also proves, that some geologic disciplines were taught and scientific research was conducted at that time.
Second period of geology development at the Lviv University is associated with the activity of three chairs of geological profile, opened at the philosophical faculty. The mineralogy chair was founded in 1864. It was headed during different periods by professors F. Tzirkel’, F. Krejtz, and J. Medvez’kyi. In 1905 geology chair was opened. It was headed by a famous specialist in oil geology, professor R. Zyber. In 1922 the second in the world crystallography chair, which was headed by professor Vajberg, was organized at the University.
Third period of geology development at the Lviv University is connected with the natural-mathematical faculty. It consisted of mentioned above chairs, and also new the one - paleontology, which was headed by professors J. Semerads’kyi and J. Samsonovych. These professors have made great effort to form and develop general geology, tectonics, mineralogy, petrography, crystallography, paleontology.
Firstly Geological faculty at the Lviv University was created in 1945 in two buildings of the University on 4, Sv. Mykolaj st. (now Hryshevs’kiy st.). The mineralogy, crystallography and petrography chairs were situated here. Chairs of General Geology, Historic Geology and Palaeontology, Geology of the USSR were situated on 68, Kyryla and Mephodija st. During 50s of the 20th century all of faculty chairs were gathered under one roof on 4, Hryshevs’kiy st.
Professor E. Lazarenko (graduate of the Kharkov University) initiated creation of the Geological Faculty. He was a dean of the faculty till 1949, afterwards he was put in to be a vice-principal (till 1951), and then rector (till 1963) of the Lviv University.
Chair of Mineralogy is the oldest one and from 1945 till 1969 professor E. Lazarenko headed it. During 1969–1974 chair was headed by one of the first graduate and faculty postgraduate, assistant professor À. Jasyns’ka. She was replaced with professor Î. Matkovs’kyj on this post.
During 1945–1962 crystallography chair was headed by the professor G. Piotrovskyi. In 1965 chair was closed down.
V. Sobolev, D. Bobrovnik, O. Bobrijevich headed the Chair of Petrography. Today Petrography Chair is headed by a faculty graduate, assistant professor I. Pobereghska.
Chair of General Geology during post-war years was managed by professors P. Ermakov and D. Rezvoj. Today the chair is managed by a faculty graduate, professor À. Sivironov.
Chair of Historic Geology and Paleontology during different periods was headed by Î. Vjalov, V. Goretz’kyi, J. Kylchytzkyi, G. Hryhorchyk. Now the chair is managed by a faculty graduate professor R. Leshchyh.
Chair of Geology of the USSR was managed by: B. Porfirjev, G. Alferjev, E. Laz’ko. In 1964 chair was liquidated.
In 1955 Chair of Search Methods and Mineral Deposits was organized. It was managed by V. Kozerenko, D. Jyrzevs’kyi, E. Laz’ko (1964–1990). In 1990 – 1995 chair was headed by a faculty graduate À. Piznyr. In 1994 it was renamed into Chair of Mineral Deposits and Ecological Geology. Today the chair is managed by a faculty graduate, assistant professor M. Pavlyn’.
The Chair of Ecological and Engineering Geology and Hydrology during 1999-2009 was consequently headed by professors Ryd’ko G.I, Pizniyr A.V., Kolodiy V.V., assistant professor Lebedynetz Ì. V. Since 2010 this Chair has been headed by assistant professor Voloshyn P.K.
The Chair of Physics of the Earth was created in 2000 and since this year it has been headed by assistant professor Fourman V.V. Notwithstanding that the aforesaid chair was set up in 2000, the history of scientific research concerning the physical processes occurring on the Earth and beneath its surface has started at the University since the beginning of the 20th century. Being created in 1920 by the prominent Polish scientist Henryk Bronislaw Arctowski (15.07.1871–21.02.1958) the Chair of Geophysics and Meteorology had almost the same tasks as the present Chair has. Henryk Bronislaw Arctowski was awarded with the title of Honorable Professor of Lviv University for his research in the field of Geosciences in 1912.
Until 1995 there have been 15 doctors of sciences, professors, 14 candidates of sciences, assistant professors, and only 8 persons did not have academic degree among professorial-teaching stuff. During different periods future academicians such as V. Sel’s’kyi, S. Sybotin, L. Tkachyk, J. Dolgov, professors V. Koskjyk, L. Kydrin, S. Pasternak, E. Shevchenko, and also assistants professor À. Àlekseenko, O. Anastasjeva, N. Vartanova, J. Giller, T. Golovchenko, Î. Gorbachevs’ka, V. Ershov, E. Kyryk, V. Kyzemko, E. Lavrenko, V. Les’njak, B. Merlich, E. Portnjagin, K. Sydorenko, T. Slyvko, T. Fishikin, V. Sheremeta and others worked at the faculty.
There are two forms of preparation of young specialists at the faculty: full-time and extra-mural. During first years of faculty existence, Geology was the only one specialty, later three of them appeared: Geologic Survey and Searches, Mineral Deposits and Geochemistry.
Afterwards, first two specialties were jointed into one - Geologic Survey, Searches and Mineral Deposits, and the later was renamed into Geochemistry, Mineralogy and Petrology. The very last specialty was popular among students from foreign countries. In 1995 new specialty - Ecological Geology was introduced.
Teaching of sparring disciplines includes the basic courses of special and humanitarian cycles and a lot of additional courses. During recent years many changes in special and humanitarian cycles have been made. This enables to provide a sufficient educational and cultural level of faculty graduates.
Faculty graduates took active part in founding out mineral deposits, especially such unique, as Yakutian diamonds and Carpathian sulphur. A lot of our graduates head large geologic unions and expeditions.
A lot of our faculty teachers delivered lectures in different foreign countries: Algeria, (À. Kostenko, V. Kyzmenko, J. Pekyn); Guinea (². Maryshkin); Mali (V. Shevchyk). In Cuba Republic J. Pekyn worked as an adviser for preparatory faculties of Central Ministry of Higher Education and ². Maryshkin was a rector adviser of University Center in the city of Matapeos.
Faculty prepares the stuff of higher qualification with the help of postgraduate school and doctorate.
Advanced researches at the faculty were conducted as in theoretical, so as in applied trends. In 1957 problem research laboratory was created.
Now all scientific researchers are concentrated on the territory of Ukraine and are conducted in the new Institute of Geology, Gold Mineralogy, Colored Metals and Ukrainian diamonds (1994).
At the Faculty of Geology several geologic trends, which outgrew in scientific schools, were formed. There some of them: mineralogical, petrographic, thermobarogeochemical, paleontology-stratigraphical, tectonic, pre-Cambrian-formations.
Professor D. Bobrovnik laid the base for lithological researches, and professor G. Piotrovskyi – for morphology of crystals and mineralogical experiment. Professor B. Porfir’jev started the study of combustible deposits, which recently has been continued by professors V. Glyshko and J. Kylchitskyi. Now researches on these topics are successfully conducted by faculty graduates.
The results of scientific researchers are published both in our and in foreign scientific editions, in interdepartmental collections. Hundreds monographic works of the faculty scientists were published. World acknowledgement gained textbooks written by E. Lazarenko “Mineralogy Course”, E. Lazko “The Geology of USSR”, V. Sobolev “Introduction to the Silicate Mineralogy” (1949).
Several international and state scientific forums took place at the faculty.
Scientific researches of the faculty scientists were marked by numerous rewards.
Students also take active part in scientific work. Over 150 publications belong to students. Among others it is useful to mention two medals of ÀS of Ukraine (V. Bartoshins’kyi and V. Zyhareva). Interdepartmental student research group “Shelf” won the reward for its work “Shatz’k lakes and some problems of their guard” in 1982.
Geologic and mineralogical museums is the pride of Faculty of Geology. They were considerably replenished by unique mineral collections, rocks, fossils, etc. In 1983 professor E. Laz’ko initiated creation of a new museum of mineral deposits, more precisely their genetic types.