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Why major in Geological Sciences?
Many people think that the geological sciences involve just the study of rocks. Majoring in Geological Science is an opportunity to focus on everything from the evolution of life to natural hazards, sustainable natural resources management, understanding climate change, and planetary exploration. Our location near the Pacific coast, the Sierra Nevada mountain range, and the San Andreas fault system provides a fantastic setting for field studies, and most courses include field trips. Our majors also take advantage of in-depth research with faculty. Recent projects have included collecting coral samples in Hawaii to analyzing GIS data. A major or minor in this field prepares you for careers in environmental engineering, land use planning, law, public service, teaching, graduate studies in Earth and environmental, and planetary sciences, and other professions in which an understanding of the Earth and a background in science are important.
Areas of study in the geological sciences
- Earth history and the evolution of life
- Oceans and the atmosphere
- Processes that shape the Earth's landscapes
- Chemistry and physics of Earth materials
- Sources of water, economic minerals, metals, and fuels
- Natural hazards like earthquakes, volcanoes, and landslides
- Contamination of natural waterways and possibilities for mitigation
- Resource depletion and sustainable practices
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