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Summary Report for:
19-2042.00 - Geoscientists, Except Hydrologists and Geographers

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.

Sample of reported job titles: Engineering Geologist, Environmental Protection Geologist, Exploration Geologist, Geological Specialist, Geologist, Geophysicist, Geoscientist, Mine Geologist, Petroleum Geologist, Project Geologist

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Analyze and interpret geological, geochemical, or geophysical information from sources such as survey data, well logs, bore holes, or aerial photos.
  • Plan or conduct geological, geochemical, or geophysical field studies or surveys, sample collection, or drilling and testing programs used to collect data for research or application.
  • Prepare geological maps, cross-sectional diagrams, charts, or reports concerning mineral extraction, land use, or resource management, using results of fieldwork or laboratory research.
  • Analyze and interpret geological data, using computer software.
  • 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.
  • Assess ground or surface water movement to provide advice regarding issues such as waste management, route and site selection, or the restoration of contaminated sites. Green Task Statement
  • Locate and estimate probable natural gas, oil, or mineral ore deposits or underground water resources, using aerial photographs, charts, or research or survey results.
  • Locate and review research articles or environmental, historical, or technical reports. Green Task Statement
  • Communicate geological findings by writing research papers, participating in conferences, or teaching geological science at universities.
  • Measure characteristics of the Earth, such as gravity or magnetic fields, using equipment such as seismographs, gravimeters, torsion balances, or magnetometers.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

Electromagnetic geophysical instruments — Alternating field demagnitizers; Degaussing wands; Impulse magnetizers; Thermal specimen demagnitizers
Paramagnetic susceptibility analyzers — Magnetic susceptibility measurement systems; Magnetic susceptibility/anisotropy systems; Magnetic susceptibility/temperature systems; Pocket magnetic susceptibility meters
Radarbased surveillance systems — Ground penetrating radar GPR; Long range radar equipment; Short-range radar equipment
Soil core sampling apparatus — Sediment piston corers; Soil augers; Soil samplers; Tube samplers
Sonars — Echosounders; Multibeam echosounders; Side scan sonars; Towed sonars

Technology used in this occupation:

Analytical or scientific software — EarthWorks Downhole Explorer; Gemcom Surpac; RockWare Geochemist's Workbench GWB; Waterloo Hydrogeologic FlowPath II
Computer aided design CAD software — Atoll GeoCAD; Evolution Computing EasyCAD; Trimble Terramodel; Upperspace DesignCAD
Data base user interface and query software — GeoPLUS Petra; MJ Systems Logsleuth; RockWare Stratbugs; Scientific Software Group ChemPoint/ChemStat
Graphics or photo imaging software — ACD Systems Canvas; Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop software; Golden Software Surfer (graphics or photo imaging feature); IGnet software
Map creation software — ESRI ArcView; Geosoft Oasis montaj; Leica Geosystems ERDAS IMAGINE; SACLANTCEN *

* Software developed by a government agency and/or distributed as freeware or shareware.

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Knowledge

Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Physics — Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
Geography — Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
Chemistry — Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
Engineering and Technology — Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Biology — Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.

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Skills

Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
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.
Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
Mathematics — Using mathematics to solve problems.

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Abilities

Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).

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Work Activities

Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

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Work Context

Electronic Mail — How often do you use electronic mail in this job?
Face-to-Face Discussions — How often do you have to have face-to-face discussions with individuals or teams in this job?
Duration of Typical Work Week — Number of hours typically worked in one week.
Telephone — How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?
Freedom to Make Decisions — How much decision making freedom, without supervision, does the job offer?
Structured versus Unstructured Work — To what extent is this job structured for the worker, rather than allowing the worker to determine tasks, priorities, and goals?
Work With Work Group or Team — How important is it to work with others in a group or team in this job?
Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — How important is being very exact or highly accurate in performing this job?
Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — How often does this job require working indoors in environmentally controlled conditions?
Contact With Others — How much does this job require the worker to be in contact with others (face-to-face, by telephone, or otherwise) in order to perform it?

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Four: Considerable Preparation Needed
Education Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.
Related Experience A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.
Job Training Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.
Job Zone Examples Many of these occupations involve coordinating, supervising, managing, or training others. Examples include accountants, sales managers, database administrators, teachers, chemists, environmental engineers, criminal investigators, and special agents.
SVP Range (7.0 to < 8.0)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
50   Bachelor's degree
25   Master's degree
13   Doctoral degree

This occupation may require a background in the following science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) educational disciplines:

Geosciences — Geological and Earth Sciences/Geosciences; Geology/Earth Science, General

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Credentials

Find Training Find Certifications Find Licenses

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Interests

Interest code: IR

Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

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Work Styles

Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.

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Work Values

Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Recognition — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

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Related Occupations

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17-2111.03 Product Safety Engineers
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19-2021.00 Atmospheric and Space Scientists Green Occupation
19-2041.00 Environmental Scientists and Specialists, Including Health   Green Occupation Green
19-2099.01 Remote Sensing Scientists and Technologists Bright Outlook Green Occupation
19-4041.01 Geophysical Data Technicians Green Occupation

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2013) $44.19 hourly, $91,920 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 38,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Faster than average (15% to 21%) Faster than average (15% to 21%)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 17,300
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2013 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

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