Degrees in Geology

Undergraduate Degree

Geology (or Geoscience) is the study of the earth’s composition, internal structure, processes, and history. Geoscientists perform three vitally important roles in our society by

  1. supplying the things we need (energy resources, metals, building materials, water),
  2. protecting the environment (preventing or mitigating contamination of water, soil or air, or adverse impacts on ecosystems), and
  3. minimizing the impact of geologic hazards (floods, landslides, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis) on people and property.

The Earth’s expanding population and increased use of natural resources along with our need for energy, environmental protection, and responsible land and resource management are likely to fuel a demand for geoscientists well into the future. Employment for geoscientists is predicted to grow 14 faster than the average for all other occupations between 2016-2026. The median annual wage for geoscientists was $91,130 in 2018 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Marshall University’s location in southern West Virginia provides students with a wealth of opportunities for field based studies in environmental geology, engineering geology, and energy resources.

Geology offers a B.S. degree in Geology with areas of emphasis in Engineering Geology and Environmental Geology and an M.S. degree in Physical and Applied Sciences area of emphasis in Geology. The B.S. in Geology degree consists of an interdisciplinary curriculum that provides a sound foundation in both fundamental and applied aspects of geology. Graduates are typically employed by environmental and engineering companies, natural resource industries, and government agencies, or pursue more advanced degrees.

If you are looking for a career with an exciting lifestyle, then Geology offers many advantages. For the individual who does not wish to be office-bound, Geology is an ideal career since much of the geologist’s work is done in the field with adventures that can take you to remote parts of the world. A career in Geology provides many choices, many challenges and much fulfilling work.

Geology, B.S.

Academic map for B.S. in Geology
Provides a broad foundation for entry level positions in the geosciences or for graduate school)

Academic map for B.S. in Geology Engineering Geology area of emphasis
Provides training in acquisition, interpretation, and use of rock and soil, for the solution of engineering problems

Academic map for B.S. in Geology, Environmental Geoscience area of emphasis
Provides application of geologic concepts to the solution of environmental problems related to man’s activities or to natural geologic hazards

Graduate Degree

Physical and Applied Sciences, M.S. – Geology area of emphasis

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Department of Natural Resources & Earth Sciences

Office: Morrow Library 116

Office Hours: Mon – Fri, 9:00am – 4:00pm


Phone: 304-696-6498

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