BS in Earth Science

Why specialize in Earth Science?

Earth Scientists (or geoscientists) gather and interpret data about the Earth. They use their knowledge to increase our understanding of Earth processes and to improve the quality of human life. Their work and career paths vary widely because geoscience disciplines are broad and diverse. The National Science Foundation considers geology, geophysics, hydrology, oceanography, marine science, environmental science, and soil science as the major geoscience disciplines. 

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Contact program director Dr. Brent Zaprowski for more information

What is the Program of Study?

Our program focuses on giving students a broad background in the geosciences and its application to solving environmental problems and mitigating natural hazards. Thus, students complete core courses in geology, weather and climate, map interpretation, geographic information science, statistics, chemistry and physics. Students then follow one of the three Earth Science tracks and complete the additional requirements. One key feature of our coursework in the Earth Science degree is our commitment to field work and experiential studies. Many of the core and elective courses in the Earth Science program include class field trips and intensive, hands-on lab activities. The coursework required for this degree provides a solid undergraduate knowledge which serves as a strong foundation for students continuing on to graduate studies or onto a career in the geosciences.

  • The Earth Science General Track is designed for those students who wish to have maximum flexible in choosing their elective courses. Students in the General Track are require to complete three elective courses from the list of approved courses. According to the 2014 American Geosciences Institute (AGI) State of Geosciences report, a majority of geoscience majors go into oil and gas (36%), environmental services (21%) and mining (11%).
  • The courses prescribed by the Geoenvironmental Science Track prepare our majors for jobs in these three subfields (as well as others). In addition, many states require that professional geologists acquire a license in order to work in their state. The Geoenvironmental Science track is specifically designed to give students the necessary background knowledge needed to successfully complete state licensure exams.
  • For students interested in teaching, the Secondary Education Track gives students the education coursework and internship experience necessary to become licensed to teach science at the middle school and high school levels. Secondary education majors have an additional advisor in the Seidel School of Education.
Potential majors who have questions about the education courses required for this track should contact Starlin Weaver (sdweaver@salisbury.edu) in the Department of Education Specialties.