Unearthing the Secrets of Planet Earth's Rock
Byline: EMMA THOMPSON
What does a career as a geoscientist involve? Geoscientists, or geologists, are involved in the scientific study of the structure, evolution and dynamics of the Earth and its natural resources.
They investigate the internal and external processes that have shaped the Earth throughout its 4.6 billion year history.
As a geoscientist, you would use a range of methods of investigation in your work, including drilling, seismic surveying, satellite and aerial imagery, and electromagnetic measurement.
You could be assessing the safety and impact of creating a dam or tunnel on a civil engineering project; locating a suitable landfill or storage site for nuclear waste; searching for energy resources and minerals; designing exploration programmes for new water supplies; or studying volcanic and seismic activity to develop early warning systems.
Geoscience is a broad subject that includes many sub-sectors and as a geoscientist, you could specialise in an area such as geophysics, environmental geology, natural hazards, energy resources, and mining and extraction. What personal skills are needed? An interest in the natural world is needed, as well as good scientific and technical skills, an accurate approach to work and good observational skills.
A methodical approach to problem-solving is essential, plus a good level of general fitness and the ability to work with statistical and graphical information. What training do you need? To gain a career as a professional geoscientist you will need a degree in a relevant physical science subject such as geology, geophysics, or geochemistry.
Courses often combine theory with fieldwork and practical training.
To get on to a degree, you are likely to need five GCSEs (A-C) including English, plus three A levels in subjects such as physics, chemistry, biology, geology and maths. …