Spells are a form of magic and ranged combat available in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Spells require Magicka to be cast and are a common form of combat among mages. Some spells are used for attacking, whereas others offer defensive or support abilities.
As in previous entries, spells in Skyrim are split into different "schools" of magic depending on their use. Skyrim features 5 different schools which each feature as skills under the sign of The Mage.
Destruction: Destruction spells focus on dealing damage to opponents, and generally fall under either flame, frost or shock. Flame spells deal extra burning damage, frost spells damage the target's Stamina, and shock spells damage the target's Magicka. Examples of Destruction spells include Flames and Ice Spike.
Restoration: Restoration spells focus on tending to one's wounds and keeping yourself alive. These generally include healing spells and wards. All Fortification enchantments also fall into the Restoration school. Examples of Restoration spells include Healing and Greater Ward.
Conjuration: Conjuration spells focus on summoning creatures from one of the planes of Oblivion and conjuring ethereal weapons for use in combat. Soul Trap also falls under the Conjuration school. Examples of Conjuration spells include Conjure Flame Atronach and Bound Bow.
Alteration: Alteration spells focus on detecting life around you and protecting yourself with magic armor, as well as gaining unique abilities. Examples of Alteration spells include Detect Dead and Ebonyflesh.
Spells require Magicka to be cast, each spell requiring its own amount. The amount of Magicka needed to cast a spell can be decreased using perks or certain enchantments.
When attempting to cast, if not enough Magicka is available, the spell will not be cast. One must be careful when using magic in combat as to not exhaust their magicka supply. Some strong magicka potions can remedy this.
Using Skyrim's new dual-wielding mechanics, it is possible to dual-wield any two spells together, as well as one spell with a one-handed tool such as a shield. This does not include certain Master spells as they must be cast with two hands (e.g Summon Unbound Dremora).
At the beginning of Skyrim, only two spells are available to the player (with the exception of certain races which may have more); Flames and Healing. Other spells must be learnt through the use of spell books, which can be found around the world or purchased from vendors. The location of a spell book can be found on its respective page.
A list of spells can be found here.