Why Earth SciencesEarth sciences encompasses the study of earth material (rocks, sediment, soil, petroleum), water (oceans, groundwater, water quality), and the atmosphere (climate change, air quality), as well as the relationships between material, water, air, their interaction with biologic life, and their changes through time.
The Department of Earth Sciences at IUPUI teaches the importance, application, and relevance of earth sciences in modern society and has a strong research program. The faculty and staff of the department provide an environment where students at all levels can explore, discover, and learn earth sciences through coursework and research.
- Undergraduates in the department benefit from a variety of on-campus resources that other disciplines cannot offer; we have many opportunities to integrate undergraduates into research through scholarships, internships, and other funding sources.
- Our research faculty provide a wide range of diversity across the geosciences not available at many other state and private institutions.
- Most importantly, our Center for Earth and Environmental Science brings together campus, industry, and government stakeholders to conduct research and outreach related to environmental issues in Indiana.
Why study earth sciences?
Earth science (which includes geology and environmental science among other sub-disciplines) is a great field to study because:
- It combines the strengths of biology, geography, physics, chemistry, and biology and applies them to our knowledge of the Earth.
- The career opportunities are very diverse. Some geologists spend most of their time outdoors, others spend their entire time in the laboratory, and many spend a mixture of time outside, in the lab, and at their desk.
- As a smaller discipline of study, faculty and advisors can give one on one attention to each and every student.
- Employment opportunities are spread evenly across the U.S., both in rural and urban areas, with the highest concentration in large metro areas like Indianapolis.
- Students can easily advance to the graduate level and earn a Masters or PhD degree.
The faculty research in our department speaks of the diversity. Several faculty are researching climate change and global warming, which has involved trips on ocean research ships and Antarctica. Other faculty are researching water quality issues and behavior in Central Indiana, while another faculty member researches the geologic history of mountain building in southern California. Some faculty do their research entirely in the laboratory or by computer, but most require some field work to collect samples that are then processed in our laboratories.
Environmental Science program
Environmental Science is an interdisciplinary field of study that investigates the interrelationships in the modern environment of humans and natural phenomena and focuses on important modern concerns, like how our global climate is changing and how that change may affect human activities, how to maintain and improve vital natural resources like drinking water, and how to manage and balance the quality of the environment in the face of improving the quality of life in the United States and abroad.
A bachelor degree in geology gives a student a solid, interdisciplinary background in the sciences. B.A. students may take a larger number of electives than B.S. students to create an academic concentration in another field that uses geology as a basis a for a wide variety of careers.