Play-Based Assessment of Unconventional Opportunities

This course focuses on the assessment of unconventional plays and the identification of initial well locations within them. The course is centered around a seven-stage exercise in a shale play where participants 1) build maps to spatially quantify in-place oil/gas richness per square mile, 2) identify target acreage by overlaying maps with components affecting producibility, and 3) estimate play chance, establish value for candidate blocks, and formulate an entry strategy. The goal is to expose participants to all the key concepts and steps in the unconventional play-based assessment process, and then apply these to a real-life competitive bidding situation.


Course Description (PDF)

Course Outline

01. Introduction and Objectives
02. What is an Unconventional Play?
03. Screening Opportunities
04. Probability and Distributions
05. Building an Unconventional Play Map
06. Volume Components and Tank Volume Calculations
07. Yet-to-Find Methods
08. Exercise–Part 1: Mapping of the Play Fairway and Estimating In-Place Richness per Square Mile
09. Volumetric Calculations Including Map Uncertainty
10. Exercise–Part 2: Deriving Volume Inputs with Uncertainty from Maps (Codell SS example)
11. Aggregated Well Results Yet-to-Find Method
12. Fluid Flow and Predicting EUR from Production Data
13. Exercise–Part 3: Cash Flow Analysis and Validation of Minimum Recovery Efficiencies for Profitability
14. Spatial Variability and Mapping of Factors Affecting Producibility
15. Exercise–Part 4: Mapping Elements Controlling Producibility, Surface Issues, & Ranking of Blocks
16. PlayPen© Software Demonstration (Optional)
17. Treatment of Chance
18. Exercise–Part 5: Play Chance Estimation
19. Estimating Resources
20. Play Entry Lease Acquisition Strategies
21. Exercise–Part 6: Establishing Block Values & Appropriate Bid Amounts; Competitive Lease Sale; Testing Play Chance
22. Post Lease Acquisition Strategies
23. Exercise–Part 7: Choosing Initial Drilling Locations; Determining Block Values; Skill Score Awards
24. Wrap-up


This course is intended for geoscientists, petrophysicists, engineers, and managers who are focused on exploring and appraising low permeability shales, carbonates, and sandstones in new areas.

Interested in other courses?
View Course Schedule

Available Courses

This course is currently unscheduled on our open course calendar. Interested in attending this course? Let us know here.



Request a Demo

Discover the features and advantages of our software by requesting a personalized demo.


Open Enrollment

Our open enrollment courses offer individuals and smaller companies access to our industry-leading trainings. Courses are available worldwide throughout the year.


Interested in Learning More?

Please fill our our request information form to determine availability and pricing. Someone will respond within 24 hours.