The BS in Geological Sciences is designed for students who intend to pursue careers in geology and pursue professional certification as a geologist. The degree is also well-suited to continue studies in geological sciences or associated earth sciences at the graduate level.

The BS in Geological Sciences is structured with a core suite of courses and the option to develop a specialization through pursing an emphasis. Available areas of emphasis are:

  • General Geology
  • Engineering Geology
  • Environmental Geosciences
  • Geophysics
  • Hydrogeology
  • Paleontology

The Degree Learning Outcomes for the BS in Geological Sciences are:

Goal 1.Understand earth history and systems, emphasizing life on Earth and sedimentary systems.

  • Objective 1.1 Understand the history of life on Earth using common fossil taxa.
  • Objective 1.2 Intergrate sedimentological and stratigraphic data to reconstruct environmental history.

Goal 2.Understand field-based geological and geophysical investigations, emphasizing earth structure and dynamics.

  • Objective 2.1 Integrate diverse physical and structural data to reconstruct Earth history and understand Earth’s dynamics.
  • Objective 2.2 Apply appropriate physical and mechanicals principles to quantify and predict the actions of Earth’s processes and resulting physical structures.

Goal 3.Understand Earth materials and composition in all parts of the geosphere.

  • Objective 3.1 Identify and understand the relationships between the basic chemical building blocks that make up minerals and rocks
  • Objective 3.2 Integrate chemical data to understand active and past Earth processes using compositional clues, geoscience methods, norms, and epistemology.

Goal 4.Understand the nature and collection of evidence in the Earth Sciences.

  • Objective 4.1 Construct accurate and interpretive geologic or geophysical maps in the field from data gathered during field-based investigations.
  • Objective 4.2 Communicate the results of any type of Earth science investigations via complete, concise, and coherent written and oral reports.

Goal 5.Understand geoscientific data interpretation: methods and paradigms.

  • Objective 5.1 Understand how to use the investigative method of multiple working hypotheses in authentic geological and geophysical investigations.
  • Objective 5.2 Understand and interpret Earth systems and complex system-scale interactions from the integration of diverse geoscientific data.
  • Objective 5.3 Understand and apply quantitative methods to problem solving and analysis.

BS Curriculum Map

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Major Academic Plans (MAPs)

Visit for the recommended courses needed to fulfill your major requirements. The MAPs Web site was created to help students navigate the course requirements for their majors and to identify which General Education course will also fulfill a major preparation course requirement.