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All About Geoscientists

Geoscientist Example 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.

Life As a Geoscientist

  • 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.
  • Collaborate with medical or health researchers to address health problems related to geological materials or processes.
  • Inspect construction projects to analyze engineering problems, using test equipment or drilling machinery.
  • Identify deposits of construction materials suitable for use as concrete aggregates, road fill, or other applications.
  • Provide advice on the safe siting of new nuclear reactor projects or methods of nuclear waste management.
  • Advise construction firms or government agencies on dam or road construction, foundation design, land use, or resource management.

What a Geoscientist Should Know

Geoscientists state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Science: Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

  • Geochemist
  • Invertebrate Paleontologist
  • Geophysical Laboratory Supervisor
  • Environmental Field Office Manager
  • Environmental Consultant

Is There Job Demand for Geoscientists?

In the United States, there were 32,000 jobs for Geoscientists, Except Hydrologists and Geographers in 2016.

New jobs are being produced at a rate of 14% which is lower than average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 4,500 new jobs for Geoscientists by 2026. There will be an estimated 3,500 positions for Geoscientist per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Geoscientists in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Geoscientists, Except Hydrologists and Geographers are Texas, Colorado, and California.

Watch out if you plan on working in West Virginia, Vermont, or North Dakota. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Geoscientist Salary

Geoscientists, Except Hydrologists and Geographers Make between $49,430 and $187,990 a year. The median salary for this occupation is $91,130.

Salary Ranges for Geoscientists

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for jobs of this type in different U.S. states.

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

Texas

$150,140

Oklahoma

$123,230

Colorado

$111,130

Louisiana

$109,700

Hawaii

$109,530

Pennsylvania

$108,580

Alaska

$99,400

New Jersey

$98,050

California

$97,550

North Dakota

$97,320

Virginia

$96,290

New Hampshire

$95,510

Nevada

$94,500

Washington

$93,710

Montana

$92,680

Mississippi

$91,490

Maryland

$90,110

Rhode Island

$88,130

Idaho

$88,060

Massachusetts

$87,650

New Mexico

$86,620

Connecticut

$85,250

Utah

$80,970

Florida

$80,970

Delaware

$80,570

Nebraska

$79,570

Minnesota

$78,410

Arizona

$77,650

Kansas

$77,590

West Virginia

$77,530

Tennessee

$77,510

New York

$76,360

Ohio

$75,600

Wisconsin

$75,110

Oregon

$74,920

Maine

$74,380

Kentucky

$73,230

Wyoming

$73,220

South Carolina

$72,040

North Carolina

$71,830

Iowa

$71,490

Missouri

$70,340

Illinois

$69,480

Georgia

$68,860

Arkansas

$67,260

Alabama

$64,970

South Dakota

$63,680

Indiana

$61,870

What Tools & Technology do Geoscientists Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Geoscientists:

  • Geographic information system GIS software
  • Evolution Computing EasyCAD
  • Schlumberger Inside Reality
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Office
  • The MathWorks MATLAB
  • Microsoft Project
  • SAS
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Paradigm SKUA-GOCAD

Where do Geoscientists Work?

Geoscientist Sectors

Similar Careers

Those thinking about becoming Geoscientists might also be interested in the following careers:

  • Geospatial Information Scientists and Technologists

Are you already one of the many Geoscientists in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:

  • Atmospheric, Earth, Marine, and Space Sciences Professors
  • Physicists

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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