Geoscientists seek to understand the Earth’s composition, natural systems, and history. Our understanding of processes such as earthquakes, volcanic activity, landslides, floods, land subsidence, coastal processes, and climate changes have a tremendous impact on human activity and, indeed, human life! Humans depend on Earth’s resources including surface and ground water, soils for growing crops and building materials, fossil and nuclear fuels, metallic and non-metallic building materials. Geoscientists work to find and manage such resources. Deciphering Earth’s long history may provide us with potential insights into our own future.
In addition to natural resource companies including the mining and fossil fuel industries, Geologists are routinely employed by research agencies including those in federal, state and local governments as well as non-profit organizations; geologic engineering, hydrological, and environmental consulting firms; and secondary schools, colleges and universities. Most entry level work requires a bachelor’s degree. Graduate degrees are often required for research and supervisory geologists as well as post-secondary faculty positions. Most graduate degrees focus on specialties including but not limited to geochemistry, geophysics, paleontology, planetary geology, geological/mining/petroleum engineering, and hydrology. Other fields/majors such as civil engineering, forestry, sustainability, and environmental sciences either require or strongly recommend some background courses in geology.
Many geoscientists spend some time in the field gathering samples, collecting data and/or determining spatial relationships. An office or laboratory environment is often used for data analysis and synthesis often using computers for the preparation of written reports, maps, and cross sections.
If the study of the Earth captivates you, please consider starting your career in the Geological Sciences!
Students at any Maricopa Community College may need to complete courses at more than one of our colleges.
- Flexible Start Dates: You can start almost every Monday of the year - so you can begin class on your schedule.
- Accommodating Course Format: Classes are delivered online - allowing you to schedule time for classwork around your work and family commitments.
- Textbooks Options: Most classes have low-cost rental options for textbooks. Some courses use open-educational resources (OER), which correlates to no textbook cost for students.
- Free Tutoring: At Rio, we offer free, online tutoring to offer you additional support.
- 24/7 Helpdesks: Need help? We have help available 24/7.
- Experienced Faculty: Our faculty are working professionals who know their content and want to assist you in successfully completing your courses!
Geology at Rio Salado College reveals the mystery that is our planet, as well as our impact on it. Studying Earth’s materials, physical structure, and geological processes and hazards leads to a better understanding of our home. Instructors with real world experience support you as you engage in identification of minerals, the use of topographic maps, and investigations of the effects of natural hazards. Choosing a start date and pace that works with your schedule puts you on the path to discovery.