Students in Geology-Biology apply principles from geology, biology, chemistry, and physics to understand how major components of the Earth, such as its atmosphere and oceans, interact with and sustain life in the past, present, and into the future.  Many courses emphasize climate change, environmental pollution, and biogeochemistry, so this concentration is a good one for students interested in studying the environment. Other areas emphasize Earth history, including climate change, extinction events, and using the Earth’s sedimentary record to investigate environmental change. 

Both AB and ScB degrees are offered; the ScB requires more (19) courses, including a research course. DEEPS provides a highly collaborative learning environment that emphasizes process-oriented, hands-on approaches in the classroom, in labs and on field trips.  There are many opportunities for students to do research working with faculty, graduate students, and researchers. The degree builds students’ skills in critical thinking, written and oral communication, data analysis and modeling, and applying systems approaches to problem solving, which prepare students for a wide variety of careers. 

Student Goals

Students in this concentration will:

  • Understand fundamental processes that shaped Earth through time
  • Develop skills in critical thinking, data analysis, and communication
  • Learn how to formulate and test a scientific hypothesis
  • Study interactions between life, climate, and the solid Earth and how they affect the world around us
  • Apply tools and principles from geology and biology to investigate processes operating on the Earth’s surface

Graduating Class

Class Year Total Students Capstones Completed Honors Graduates
2014 14  14 
2017 12  12 
2019 4

Alumni Pathways

Concentrators have a wide variety of employment opportunities with their degree, including positions in the private sector (e.g. environmental consulting firms, the energy industry, data analytics), government (national research labs, US Geological Survey, Environmental Protection Agency), education and academia (K-12 schools and museums, research positions at universities, science journalism), and non-profits (think-tanks, community and national organizations). About half of our concentrators eventually attain an advanced degree; our department’s undergraduate program is ranked in the top five nationally and our concentrators are sought after by graduate programs and employers.

What are Geology - Biology concentrators doing...