Degree Requirements

Comparison of B.A. and B.S. Geology Tracks

The B.S. track has a strong mathematical component and is designed for students planning to pursue graduate study or work as a professional geologist. The B.A. degree is intended for students who plan to pursue teacher certification, natural resource management, scientific/technical writing, and other fields combining a strong liberal arts background with science training.

Goals for Student Learning


Both the B.S. and B.A. programs in Geology are designed to lead to student mastery of basic concepts and vocabulary in the following areas:

  1. Plate tectonics
  2. Origin and classification of rocks and minerals
  3. Geological time scale and how this relates to major events in the history of Earth and its life
  4. Geophysical properties of the Earth and crustal deformation
  5. Processes that shape the surface of the Earth
  6. Environmental hazards and issues


Graduates are also expected to:

  1. Develop skills in observing and recording geologic features and processes
  2. Develop competency in the interpretation of earth science data, including both qualitative and quantitative analyses
  3. Achieve competence in
    1. Locating and interpreting scientific literature
    2. Giving oral presentations
    3. Using computers at a level consistent with current professional practice
    4. Be able to express earth science concepts in writing