University of Minnesota Duluth
Department of Geology at the University of Minnesota Duluth
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Undergraduate Programs

UMD glaciologists study deposits in Minnesota

UMD glaciologists study
deposits in Minnesota

The geological sciences provide ways of understanding and appreciating dynamic earth processes, our physical environment, and our place in the long and complex history of the planet and solar system. The geosciences are by nature interdisciplinary and attract students with broad interests in earth science, archaeology, astronomy, biology, chemistry, engineering, environmental science, applied mathematics, oceanography, or physics. A background in earth sciences can lead to rewarding careers in industry, government, conservation, law, business, and academia.

What can you do with a degree in geology?

UMD Geological Sciences has a great tradition in undergraduate education. We offer close student-faculty interactions, field-oriented learning, and student research opportunities. Our faculty offer exceptional learning and research opportunities in geology, economic geology, environmental geology and paleoclimatology, geochemistry, geophysics, glacial geology and geomorphology, hydrogeology, limnology, planetary geology, sedimentology, and tectonics.

The Department of Geological Sciences offers several undergraduate programs:

  • B.S. program, provides training for a career as a professional earth scientist, which usually requires further graduate study
  • B.S. program with mineral exploration and mining option, provides background and training for students interested in a career in mineral exploration and/or mining industries.
  • B.A. program in the liberal arts, provides a solid earth science background
  • B.S. program in Environmental Science offers a major or minor. The program has several tracks for a student to focus their studies: climate process, environmental chemistry, global resources, habitats, and quantitative methods.
  • Minor in Geological Sciences, enhances a student's understanding of earth materials and processes, and provides valuable background for many geoenvironmental careers
  • Honors Program, for those students choosing to undertake independent research
  • Letter of Recommendation Form (pdf), to receive recommendation from UMD Professor
Dinosaur excavation in Wyoming

Dinosaur excavation
in Wyoming

Degree requirements for all Geology programs are listed in the UMD online catalog. Students can tailor a study program to suit their interests and goals, and the geological sciences programs integrate well with other fields of study (such as biology, chemistry, environmental engineering, environmental studies, and wildlife management). A typical program of study toward the B.S. degree is provided by the U of M.

Petrology class in the field in Michigan UP

Petrology class in the
field in Michigan UP

UMD also offers a B.A.S. degree in Teaching Earth and Space Sciences, offered by the Department of Education in conjunction with the Department of Geological Sciences. This major is for students who plan to teach all science areas in grades 5 through 8 and teach earth and space sciences in grades 9 through 12. Students also have the option of completing the environmental education concentration with this major. This concentration enhances the students' major by integrating environmental education into formal (pre-K-12) as well as non-formal education settings such as parks and nature centers.