How to Become a Geoscientist

Projected Job Growth: 21%
Projected Employment Change: 7,100

Geoscientists study the Earth’s physical features, such as mountain ranges, rock formations, and even things occurring underneath the Earth’s crust. They collect samples of soil and water, test these samples in laboratories, analyze data, and write reports. They also provide peer review services for reports written by other geoscientists. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), from which the above figures were compiled, this field is projected to grow faster than the average career, which can be attributed to the growing movement towards environmentalism.

Why Geoscience?

Geoscience is a field set to grow by 21% by 2020, according to the BLS. In addition, geoscientists earn an average salary of approximately $82,500 annually, though keep in mind that individual salaries will vary depending on employer and previous experience. Geoscientists with advanced degrees will likely have the best job opportunities, as they will typically be more experienced and knowledgeable in the field. Geoscientists also have control over their careers and can therefore choose to specialize in different industries.

Getting Into Geoscience

At a minimum, geoscientists must have a bachelor’s degree in geoscience or another closely related science field. Students can opt to pursue online degree programs in geoscience or they can attend traditional programs. As the best positions are offered to individuals who have a master’s degree or higher, students are encourage to pursue online masters degree programs after earning their bachelor’s degrees. Geoscience programs include classes in geology, mineralogy, mathematics, and computer science. The best online degree programs will also include course work in data analysis and digital mapping.