Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics > Science and Mathematics

Projected Growth: Average

Projected Job Openings

Considerable Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the Earth. May use geological, physics, and mathematics knowledge in exploration for oil, gas, minerals, or underground water; or in waste disposal, land reclamation, or other environmental problems. May study the Earth’s internal composition, atmospheres, oceans, and its magnetic, electrical, and gravitational forces. Includes mineralogists, crystallographers, paleontologists, stratigraphers, geodesists, and seismologists.

Common job titles of Geoscientists include:

Experience and Education

A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for this occupation. For example, a person in this occupation must complete four years of college and work for several years in industry to be considered qualified.

  • 50% said they needed a Bachelor's Degree.

  • 25% said they needed a Master's Degree.


    Collaborate with medical or health researchers to address health problems related to geological materials or processes.

    Determine methods to incorporate geomethane or methane hydrates into global energy production or evaluate the potential environmental impacts of such incorporation.

    Determine ways to mitigate the negative consequences of mineral dust dispersion.

    Develop strategies for more environmentally friendly resource extraction and reclamation.

    Develop ways to capture or use gases burned off as waste during oil production processes.

    Identify new sources of platinum group elements for industrial applications, such as automotive fuel cells or pollution abatement systems.

    Identify possible sites for carbon sequestration projects.

    Locate potential sources of geothermal energy.

    Provide advice on the safe siting of new nuclear reactor projects or methods of nuclear waste management.

    Research geomechanical or geochemical processes to be used in carbon sequestration projects.

    Research ways to reduce the ecological footprint of increasingly prevalent megacities.

    Review work plans to determine the effectiveness of activities for mitigating soil or groundwater contamination.

    Study historical climate change indicators found in locations such as ice sheets or rock formations to develop climate change models.

    Analyze and interpret geological, geochemical, or geophysical information from sources such as survey data, well logs, bore holes, or aerial photos.

    Advise construction firms or government agencies on dam or road construction, foundation design, land use, or resource management.

    Conduct geological or geophysical studies to provide information for use in regional development, site selection, or development of public works projects.

    Locate and review research articles or environmental, historical, or technical reports.

    Analyze and interpret geological data, using computer software.

    Measure characteristics of the Earth, such as gravity or magnetic fields, using equipment such as seismographs, gravimeters, torsion balances, or magnetometers.

    Assess ground or surface water movement to provide advice on issues such as waste management, route and site selection, or the restoration of contaminated sites.

    Prepare geological maps, cross-sectional diagrams, charts, or reports concerning mineral extraction, land use, or resource management, using results of fieldwork or laboratory research.

    Investigate the composition, structure, or history of the Earth's crust through the collection, examination, measurement, or classification of soils, minerals, rocks, or fossil remains.

    Plan or conduct geological, geochemical, or geophysical field studies or surveys, sample collection, or drilling and testing programs used to collect data for research or application.

    Inspect construction projects to analyze engineering problems, using test equipment or drilling machinery.

    Design geological mine maps, monitor mine structural integrity, or advise and monitor mining crews.

    Test industrial diamonds or abrasives, soil, or rocks to determine their geological characteristics, using optical, x-ray, heat, acid, or precision instruments.

    Communicate geological findings by writing research papers, participating in conferences, or teaching geological science at universities.

    Locate and estimate probable natural gas, oil, or mineral ore deposits or underground water resources, using aerial photographs, charts, or research or survey results.

    Identify deposits of construction materials suitable for use as concrete aggregates, road fill, or other applications.

    Identify risks for natural disasters, such as mudslides, earthquakes, or volcanic eruptions.

    Develop applied software for the analysis and interpretation of geological data.


X ray fluorescence XRF lead detectors

X ray fluorescence spectrometers

X ray diffractometers


Water sampler bottles

Water level recorders

Water current meters

All Tools

Video microscopes

Vibrating sample magnetometers

Vertical sketchmasters

Underwater sediment bearing strength probes

Underwater cameras

Ultraviolet UV lamps

Ultrasonic sieve cleaners

Tubular water samplers

Tube samplers

Triple beam balances

Tree corers

Towed sonars

Total stations

Thermistor chains

Thermal specimen demagnitizers

Test sieves

Temperature profile recorders

Sun compasses

Submicron particle size analyzers


Stereo microscopes

Soil samplers

Soil augers

Soft face hammers

Sieve shakers

Side scan sonars

Short-range radar equipment


Seismic stations

Seismic activity recorders

Sediment samplers

Sediment piston corers


Sand grain size gauges


Roto torque mixers

Rotary grinders

Rock saws

Rock picks

Rock magnetometers

Rock chisels

Reverse osmosis systems


Radiation detectors

Pry bars


Powered rock-coring drills

Portable organic vapor analyzers

Polarizing microscopes

Pocket transits

Pocket magnetic susceptibility meters

Pneumatic airscribes

Plankton nets


pH meters

Petrographic microscopes

Personal computers


Optical compound microscopes

One-atmosphere furnaces

Notebook computers

Multibeam echosounders

Motorized mortars/pestles

Mobile wireless handheld communication devices


Microscope slides


Mercury analyzers

Mechanical earth drills

Mass spectrometers

Mapping scale sets

Mapping dividers

Mainframe computers

Magnetic susceptibility/temperature systems

Magnetic susceptibility/anisotropy systems

Magnetic susceptibility measurement systems

Long range radar equipment

Laser theodolites

Laser rangefinders

Laser printers

Large-format plotters

Laboratory rock pulverizers

Jaw crushers

Isodynamic separators

Ion chromatographs

Impulse magnetizers

Illuminated microscopes

Hydraulic earth drills

High temperature laboratory ovens

Hand magnifying lenses

Hand levels

Ground penetrating radar GPR

Gravity meters

Global positioning system GPS receivers


Geological stratum compasses

Geological compasses

Geo/paleo picks

Gamma ray spectrometers

Gamma ray scintillometers

Fusion fluxes

Fume hoods

Fluid inclusion microscopes

Electronic toploading balances

Electronic bench scales

Electron microscopes

Electron microprobes

Electrical conductivity meters

Electrical conductivity cells


Earth resistivity meters

Drying ovens

Dissolved oxygen meters

Digitizing tablets


Digital seismographs

Digital map measurers

Digital cameras

Digital alkalinity titrators


Desktop computers

Degaussing wands

Crack hammers

Core splitters

Computed tomography CT scanners



Chromatographic scanners

Chisel hammers


Cathodoluminescence scopes

Carbon analyzers

Brunauer-Emmett-Teller BET surface area analyzers

Bottom sampling equipment

Borehole cameras

Biological dredges


Automated core analysis systems

Atomic absorption AA spectrophotometers

Argon plasma atomic emission spectroscopes

Analog map measurers


Alternating field demagnitizers

All terrain vehicles ATV


Abney levels


Atoll GeoCAD

ESRI ArcGIS software

Evolution Computing EasyCAD

Evolution Computing FastCAD

Geographic information system GIS software


Microsoft Active Server Pages ASP

All Technologies

Midland Valley 3DMove






Schlumberger Inside Reality

Trimble Terramodel

Upperspace DesignCAD

Upperspace ModelCAD

ACD Systems Canvas

Alara CRystalView

Aquifer test software

Bentley Systems gINT


BOSS Didger


Clover Technology GALENA

Compass software


Data logger software

Data mining software

EarthSoft EQuIS Geology

EarthWorks Downhole Explorer

Earthworks MaxiPit

EasySolve Software SizePerm

Enigma software




ESRI ArcView

Field data recorder software

Gemcom GEMS

Gemcom Surpac

Geo-Logic Systems LithoTect Interpreter

Geographic resources analysis support system GRASS


Geomechanical design analysis GDA software


GeoPLUS Petra

Geosoft DAP server

Geosoft Oasis montaj

Geospatial data abstraction library GDAL

Geostatistical modeling GSTAT software

Geostatistics software GS+

Golden Software Surfer (graphics or photo imaging feature)

Golden Software Surfer (map creation feature)

Gresens 92

Groundwater modeling system GMS

Groundwater Vistas

Hydrogeology Basin2


IHS Energy PowerTools

Intergraph ImageStation Stereo Softcopy Kit SSK

Internet browser software

Interpex IXID

IRIS Seismic Processing Workshop

Laboratory information management system LIMS

Landmark VIP

Leica Geosystems ERDAS IMAGINE

MapInfo Professional

Mapping software

Maptek Vulcan

MHC Document Express


MineGeo software


MJ Systems Logsleuth

Multivariate statistical program MVSP software

National Geophysical Data Center GEODAS


Paleontological Statistics PAST


Parameter Estimation PEST


Red Rock DeltaGraph

RockWare ChemFlux

Rockware CrossLog

RockWare DepthCon2000

RockWare Erupt


RockWare Geochemist’s Workbench GWB

RockWare GeoTrig


RockWare Grav2Dc

RockWare Jlog

RockWare MicroMODEL

RockWare Plan

RockWare Potent

RockWare QuickSyn

RockWare RockPack III

RockWare RockWorks

RockWare Stratbugs

RockWare VEGO

RockWare Visual STUNT

RockWare WinSism


RSI interactive data language IDL software


Scientific Software Group ChemPoint/ChemStat

Scientific Software Group FEFLOW

Scientific Software Group Infinite Extent

Scientific Software Group SVHeat

SeeByte SeeTrack

Seismic interpretation software

Seismic Micro-Technology KINGDOM

Seismic visualization software

Shape software

Socorro Scientific Software Refract2K


Starpint Software Super Slug


Systat Software SigmaStat


Terrain surface mapping software

Triton Elics International SeaClass

Waterloo Hydrogeologic AquaChem

Waterloo Hydrogeologic FlowPath II

Well logging software


Combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Inductive Reasoning

Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Comprehension

Read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Expression

Communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Written Expression

Tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Problem Sensitivity

Apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Deductive Reasoning

Generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Category Flexibility

Speak clearly so others can understand you.

Auditory and Speech Abilities › Sensory Abilities › Speech Clarity

Arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Information Ordering

Choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.

Cognitive Abilities › Quantitative Abilities › Mathematical Reasoning

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