An Earth Sciences student conducting research in the field.

Earth Sciences Degree Plan

Degree Options

Bachelor of Science in Earth and Environmental Sciences


Earth Sciences


  • Earth Sciences
  • Environmental Science
  • Forestry
  • Geospatial Analysis
  • Natural Resources
  • Wildlife Ecology

Admission to the Major Requirements 

Students may be admitted as Earth Sciences majors upon declaring their intent to the department.

Suggested Classes for First-year Students

  • CHEM 101: Introduction to Chemistry
    •     OR CHEM 105: Principles of Chemistry I
  • SOE 102: Physical Geology
  • MATH 106: College Algebra
  • MATH 108: Trigonometry

Suggested Classes for Transfer Students              

  • SOE 210: Introduction to Earth’s History and Evolution
  • SOE 315: Water and the Earth
  • SOE 350: Mineralogy and Crystallography

Math Requirement        

  • MATH 106: College Algebra
  • MATH 108: Trigonometry
  • MATH 140: Calculus for Life Scientists
    •     OR MATH 171: Calculus I
  • Advanced statistics course

School of the Environment Core Courses             

Ecology, Earth Systems, Water Science, Modeling and Spatial Analysis, Society and Environmental Management, Statistics, Advanced Communications, Integrated Capstone, Experiential Learning Opportunity

Earth Sciences Core Courses

  • SOE 207: Geology Field Camp
  • SOE 350: Earth Materials

Beyond these courses the flexible core allows students to choose a large block of advanced professional electives within their chosen area of emphasis. The three areas of emphasis are Solid Earth; Earth Surface Processes; Soils and Geography; Water and Climate.

For more information

Program Strengths

Get hands-on experience and learn from leading researchers in science labs and teaching Programs like these

  • GeoAnalytical Laboratory
  • Astrobiology Laboratory
  • Computational Geodynamic Laboratory

Work closely with professors who are nationally recognized experts in:

  • Geochemistry of large volcanic eruptions
  • Exploration of chemical weathering on ecology, hydrology, geochemistry, and microbiology
  • Hydrothermal systems
  • Magma genesis in volcanic settings and rifting events
  • Astrobiology
  • Chemical and physical evolution of the Earth

Benefit from an integrated School of the Environment curriculum—you learn to consider Earth Science from all angles

Student Clubs

  • Geology Club
  • Environmental Science Club
  • The Wildlife Society
  • Forestry Club

Career Options

  • Exploration geoscientist
  • Petroleum or mining geologist
  • Geochemists
  • Geophysicists
  • Paleontologists
  • Climatologists
  • Hydrologists
  • Mineralogists
  • Planetary geologists
  • Volcanologists

Oceanographers The School of the Environment is affiliated with both the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences.