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Geological Sciences, B.S.

College of Arts and Sciences

Get a rock-solid foundation for a career exploring the environment. You will study the inner workings of the Earth all the way to climate change and build technical skills for working in the lab or in the field.

Whether you want to study earthquakes, volcanoes, groundwater, climate change or the coastal oceans, a degree in geological sciences can help you reach your goals. You can also fulfill pre-med, pre-health, or pre-law requirements, or pursue graduate study in geology.

Program Highlights

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    Field Experience

    Spend a summer with hands-on learning in the field collecting and analyzing structures in a capstone course.

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    Leading Labs

    Join cutting-edge research using plasma-source mass spectrometers at the Center for Elemental Mass Spectrometry.

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    Engaged Faculty

    Learn from our large and diverse faculty with broad scientific expertise in a variety of specializations.

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    Work That Matters

    Gain meaningful employment within energy and mineral resources or environmental consulting related to water resources.

What You’ll Study

Learn from observing the Earth with the study of rocks and minerals, stratigraphy and sedimentary basins, igneous and metamorphic processes, structural geology, surface processes, processes of global environmental change and field geology. Enhance your skills in biology, chemistry, physics, calculus, statistics and computer science.

Building Skills

Gain the professional and personal intelligence it takes to have a successful career.

  • Laboratory Research

    Conducting experiments and analyzing data to gain new knowledge and insights in a scientific field

    Scientific Writing

    Communicating scientific research and findings in a clear, accurate and compelling manner

    Data Analysis

    Examining and interpreting information to uncover insights and inform decision making

  • Critical Thinking

    Analyzing and evaluating information to make informed decisions or judgments

    Analytical Reasoning

    Breaking down complex problems or situations to identify patterns, connections and solutions

    Problem Solving

    Identifying, analyzing and resolving problems or challenges using creative and effective strategies

Using your degree

Make your college experience the foundation for a successful future.

Learn how alumni use degrees with outcome data from Gamecock GradStats, a service of the University of South Carolina Career Center.

Potential Careers

  • Carbon Sequestration Scientist
  • Lobbyist
  • Researcher
  • Instructor
  • Mine Geologist
  • Coastal Zone Management

Job Titles of Alumni

  • Geologist
  • Staff Geologist
  • Hydrogeologist
  • Field Engineer

Average Alumni Salary

Five to 10 years after graduation without additional education $66,276

Workplace Settings

  • Education
  • Environmental Science
  • Government
  • Private Sector

Employers of Alumni

  • S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control
  • University of South Carolina
  • Riverbanks Zoo and Garden
  • Schlumberger

My experience at USC has been nothing short of amazing. I've been able to cultivate experiences such as travel opportunities, research internships and fellowships all by committing to being a good academic. I think my biggest accomplishment is the network and sense of community I've established.

Jaquan High
Portrait of Jaquan High

Is USC Right For You?

There are many reasons we could be your ideal university. There's the award-winning academics, the globally modeled student life, and abundance of study abroad and experiential learning options. Take a closer look at what USC could mean for you.

Degree content is provided for informational purposes only. The Academic Bulletin is the source of record for all degree information.