You are here

Geological Sciences B.A.

Program Type: 
Bachelor of Arts
Earth and Environmental Sciences

Geological sciences is the scientific study of the origin, history, and structure of the Earth. The study of geology requires a broad base of knowledge in related sciences and mathematics. The BA in geological sciences provides an appropriate educational background for work in areas related to environmental studies, land use planning, and other fields requiring sensitivity to Earth systems.

  • Active learning environment
  • Access to state-of-the–art instrumentation
  • Focus on undergraduate teaching and research

Acquired Skills

  • Comprehension - Students will know and be able to explain the basic definitions and core concepts of Geological Science
  • Application - Students will be able to apply geological knowledge and techniques towards solutions to problems
  • Analysis - Students will be able to determine an appropriate method for research, collect data and carry out the research using techniques and equipment specific to geology
  • Communication - Students will be able to write about scientific ideas and present their ideas and findings to technical and non-technical audiences

Career Possibilities

Geologists work to understand the history of our planet. By better understanding Earth’s history, they are able to foresee how events and processes of the past might influence the future.

Geologists work in a variety of settings:

  • Natural resource companies
  • Environmental consulting companies
  • Government agencies
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Universities

Many geologists do field work at least part of the time. Others spend time in laboratories, classrooms or offices.

Admissions and Scholarships

In addition to the SCSE scholarships provided, our department offers many others including the UMD Stephen and Karen Brand Geological Sciences Field Camp Scholarship, the UMD Crain Family Scholarship, the Frantes Graduate Fellowship, the Jill and Terry Swor Scholarship, the Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences Faculty Emeriti Scholarship, the Charlie Matsch Surfical Processes Fellowship, the Charlie Matsch Field Camp Scholarship, the James R. Frantes Graduate Fellowship, the Ralph and Ellen Marsden Scholarship, the Robert C. Bright Field Camp Scholarship, the Robert L. Heller Geology Field Camp Scholarship, the Lempi and John W. Pagnucco Scholarship, the Rip Rapp Geology Field Camp Scholarship, the New Millennium Geological Scholarship, the Richard Patelke Scholarship, and the Cleveland-Cliffs Scholarship.  Additionally, each year awards are given for Outstanding Senior (Ellen and Ralph Marsden Scholarship Funds), Outstanding Junior (Hugh Roberts Scholarship Fund), Outstanding Graduate Student (Ellen & Ralph Marsden & Randy Seeling Scholarship Funds), Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant (Randy Seeling Scholarship Funds), Tools-of-the-Trade (New Millennium funds), Roderick Syck Outstanding Field Camp Performance, and the Estwing Geology Field Methods Award.

Student Clubs

We have two main clubs on campus.  The Geology club is an academic organization with the goal of sharing our passion for geology and helping students make connections in the department and throughout the field. We want to show students what geology is really about.

UMD also has a Society of Economic Geologists student chapter (SEG) on campus. The Society of Economic Geologists is an international organization of individual members with interests in the field of economic geology. The Society's membership includes representatives from industry, academia, and government institutions. Annual meetings, publications, field conferences, and short courses ensure an active communication of economic geology-related concepts within the membership and with the economic geology profession at large.

Graduate Report

Recent UMD Graduates Job Placement Data & Employers

Here's a sampling of positions Geological Sciences B.A. grads have attained six months to one year after graduation.

  • Geologist - AMI Consulting Engineers, Superior, WI
  • Sample Receiving Technician - Merieux NutriSciences, Minnetonka, MN
  • Water Resource Specialist - State of Montana, Department of Natural Resource, Helena, MT
  • Environmental Field Scientist - Northeast Technical Services, Virginia, MN

For more data see the Geological Sciences B.A. Graduate Follow-Up Report.
For ideas about Geological Sciences B.A. and other majors visit Career & Internship Services