The MTSU Department of Geosciences offers Bachelor of Science degrees in Geoscience and Environmental Science. Geoscience majors choose a concentration in either Geology or Physical Geography. Geology students choose between three career tracks: Geology, Earth Science, and Earth Science Education. Physical Geography students choose between two career tracks: Physical Geography and Geospatial Analysis.
The Department also offers a Masters of Science in Geoscience. Students in the MS program choose between two tracks: a pre-professional track involving an internship as preparation for employment, or a traditional master's thesis research track. The department is well-equipped with modern research and teaching technologies to provide both undergraduate and graduate students experiences and skills necessary to secure employment in the high-demand geosciences global job market.
Information on the MTSU Department of Geosciences and careers in geosciences:
- MTSU Geosciences: 21st Century Solutions for a 46 Million Centuries-old Planet
- MTSU Geosciences by the Numbers: 2019-20
Why study the Geosciences and Environmental Sciences?
The Earth is a dynamic planet which has changed continuously during its 4.6 billion year existence. The size, shape, and geographic distribution of the continents and ocean basins have changed throughout time, as have the atmosphere and biota. The relationships between humans and our planet have been equally dynamic. Geoscientists are increasingly aware of the complex relationships between the solid Earth, the atmosphere, and the oceans. The history of Earth processes and their continuing effects on humans is one of the greatest challenges in all of scientific research. Today, we all are faced with long-term issues such as climate change, dwindling natural resources, transitioning to renewable energy supplies, and hazards. Understanding these issues and their effects on the global population requires extensive interdisciplinary training in science, such as that provided by the Geosciences. Students interested in careers related to any aspect of the many interactions between humans and the natural environment should consider a major in Geosciences
What do Geoscience and Environmental Science majors do?
Life as a Geosciences or Environmental Sciences major is one of the most challenging, fun and rewarding on the MTSU campus. Currently, the faculty educates approximately 150 undergraduate majors, making the MTSU Department of Geosciences one of the largest undergraduate programs in the southeastern United States. However, with a student faculty ratio of approximately 15 to 1, we are able to provide each student with the personal attention necessary to ensure academic success. Because our major classes are small, the faculty know each student by name and our majors develop close-knit academic and social relationships. In addition to receiving high-quality technology-based classroom and laboratory instruction, students participate in frequent departmental field trips, attend regional and national conferences, and engage in faculty-supervised research. Importantly, the faculty considers our students' education to be a year-long endeavor, and therefore encourages majors to participate in summer geoscience field courses, research programs, and pre-professional internships.
Undergraduate Research Opportunities:
- MTSU Undergraduate Research Center
- National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates
What do Department of Geoscience graduates do?
Geoscientists are some of the most highly sought after science professionals in the world. The global demand for geoscientists in areas such as environmental science, geographic information systems, and mineral resource exploration far exceeds the current supply. Furthermore, the demand for geoscientists is expected to increase as global demand for natural resources increases and the environmental impact of human activity expands into new geographic and biological ecosystems. Many of our graduates are employed with environmental consulting firms, government agencies, and energy and mining companies. Because meaningful and rapid availability of data is vital to all geoscientists, many graduates find employment as specialists in the rapidly expanding field of geographic information systems. Our graduates go on to earn masters and doctoral degrees at some of the nation's most prestigious research universities. Importantly, the extensive interdisciplinary course of studies provided by a degree in Geosciences also prepares graduates for careers in many geoscience-related professions, such park service, science journalism, and science education.
More Information on Geoscience Careers:
- Chosen Degree Fields of Geoscience Graduates
- Geoscience Graduates First Jobs
- Median Salaries for Geoscience Workforce Occupations
- Explanation of Predicted Geoscience Workforce Shortage
- U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics - Occupational Outlook for Geoscientists
- The GIS Jobs Clearinghouse
How do you get started as a Geosciences or Environmental Sciences major?
The first step to becoming a Geosciences major is to take one of our General Education courses, Introduction to Earth Science and Laboratory (GEOL 1030/1031), Physical Geology and Lab (GEOL 1040/1041), or Physical Geography (PGEO 1030). These courses provide an overview of the Geosciences, and each counts as four credit hours toward the required MTSU General Education curriculum category of Natural Science. We also encourage you to reach out and visit us to discuss if Geosciences is the right major for you. Our faculty listing can be found here, and the Department of Geosciences office is located on the second floor of Davis Science Building (DSB 241). If you are interested in either a major or minor in Geosciences, please contact our department Executive Aide, Ms. Karen Wolfe (DSB 241, 615-898-2726, firstname.lastname@example.org), who will put you in touch with a Geosciences advisor.
MTSU - Dept. of Geosciences
MTSU PO Box 9
Davis Science Building 241
Murfreesboro TN 37132
Dr. Henrique Momm, Interim Department Chair
Karen Wolfe, Department Secretary