Getting a Degree in Geology

Learning about the earth and different rock formations can be very interesting. When studying geology, you will learn about many different earth processes such as volcanoes, floods, earthquakes, and landslides. Besides this science being an interesting subject to study, it can also lead to great job opportunities that help people around the globe.

Geology is the study of the earth, earth systems, and earth materials. Geologists examine what the possible causes of earthquakes, volcanoes, and floods and use that information to try and help the masses. Another field that may be closely related to this section of earth sciences is meteorology, which is the study of the atmosphere and the weather.

So, how do you go about getting a degree in geology? You will want to look at different schools specialized science programs to make sure that they offer classes in geology or earth sciences, as well as what degrees they offer. You are not limited to physical colleges and universities, some online schools have degrees and programs for this particular science.

For most schools there are two different degree tracks that a person can take: Bachelor’s of Science (B.S.) and Bachelor’s of Arts (B.A.). Getting a B.S. will involve a lot of mathematics and science of course. Courses for a B.S. may include higher level math classes, physics, chemistry, biology, and different types of earth science classes. Those who decide to get a B.S. normally go into being a professional geologist. A B.A. is normally for students who would like to teach, go into natural resource management, technical or scientific writing, or any other field with a strong liberal arts and science background. While getting a B.A. you will need to take foreign language classes, at least at most schools.

There are several different specializations within this particular field. One of them is Petroleum Geology which is for students who wish to work in the oil and gas field. Students who decide to use this specialization will learn about sedimentary basins and searching for oil. Geophysics studies the different physical methods of geology such as, gravity, seismic activity, and electric and magnetic properties. There is also geochemistry which looks at the chemical makeup of rocks, as well as their behavior, and the behavior of their minerals. Those are just a few areas of specializations with in this particular field.

Some geologists may work for different government agencies and are considered as contractors. If they choose to work for a private firm or a non-profit or academic institution, they may be able to hold a permanent job. If you choose to major in this field, you can expect a salary around $39,918, which is the national average. Of course, salaries may change from company to company, region, and experience.

Do some research as far as which degree level you would like to pursue. Some companies will take people who have just a bachelor’s degree, but may prefer someone with a master’s or doctoral degree. Depending on the company, people with a higher degree may be more likely to have a higher salary. If geology sounds like an interesting field, you should search for schools today to start your career. For those who already have a full-time job, attending and online school is a great option.

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