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Meeting today's challenges

Twenty-first century society depends heavily on the earth, beginning with its need for a vast amount of earth resources: fossil fuels, mineral ores, water, and soils.  Obtaining new energy and raw material sources necessitates exploration. Existing resources need to be evaluated, maintained, and in many instances, restored.  Waste products require safe and secure sequestration.   Ecosystems and human interaction need evaluation, and the potential for natural and man-made hazards must be assessed.  This provides for a number of exciting opportunities for modern earth scientists as explorers, evaluators, and managers.  Armed with a rigorous understanding of our planet’s materials and processes, geoscientists are able to provide and maintain these resources while expanding our view into the planet.

The Geosciences Program at Midwestern State University provides students with a variety of educational opportunities that prepares them for employment and/or graduate school. Courses incorporate the latest technology, information, and research techniques, and provide practical field experience along with classroom instruction. With a  Bachelor of Science in Geosciences, students pursue vocations such as water resource management, environmental assessment and consultation, and petroleum production/exploration. 

Two pathways to success

Starting with the 2012-2014 Catalog, we offer a single degree fulfilled by your choice of two pathways of study.  The Bachelor of Science Degree with a major in Geosciences may be satisfied through either the Environmental Science track or the Geosciences track.  The Environmental Science track is an interdisciplinary degree that requires a concentration option in biology, chemistry, or geoscience. Further details are on the Environmental Science webpage. The Geosciences track focuses on a traditional curriculum in geology coursework.  Both tracks provide rigorous preparation for employment or for further education in earth science.  


A number of generous donors have provided for scholarship grants for qualified applicants. Scholarships applications are solicited each April and awarded to meritorious geosciences majors that maintain a 3.0 GPA, enroll in one geosciences/environmental sciences course, and complete 12 semester hours each term.

Earn a paycheck

The program employs select qualified upperclassmen as teaching assistants in our introductory laboratories in Physical Geology, Historical Geology, Environmental Science, and Physical Sciences.  The opportunity permits students to share their knowledge, acquire the teaching experience highly valued by graduate schools, and get payed for their efforts.

Additionally, many of our students work as geotechs at local oil and gas exploration firms.  These opportunities provide hands-on training and exposure to petroleum exploration.  Most provide significant compensation in addition to valuable experience.

Field work

Field excursions and projects provide earth sciences students with a vital sense of the scale of materials and processes.  Many of our courses incorporate projects and field trips.  Recent class excursions included trips to Carlsbad Caverns and the Guadalupe Mountains, Mustang Island, Big Bend National Park, the Arbuckle Mountains, the Wichita Mountains, and the great Salt Plains.  Furthermore, geosciences track students complete a summer field course - a four-to-six week program in the summer of their junior or senior year.


Software for our computing facilities has been generously donated by Schlumberger and IHS.  The software available includes Schlumberger Petrel for geological modeling, Schlumberger Eclipse for dynamic reservoir simulation, IHS Petra for mapping, cross sections, well log plotting, and volumetric calculations, and IHS Kingdom Suite for seismic interpretation. 

Mariscal anticline