Geology

College of Science and Engineering Undergraduate Programs


 | Degrees & Programs  | Requirements  | Career Options  | More Information

About the program What is the Geology Program at SFSU?
The Department of Geosciences offers Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees in Geology, providing the basic foundation in the physical sciences necessary for pursuing a career in the field of geology. The program offers a strong background in the major areas of geology including mineralogy, petrology, paleontology, stratigraphy, and field mapping; as well as the necessary grounding in chemistry, physics, and mathematics. In addition, a broad range of electives is available to provide emphases in environmental and engineering geology, hydrogeology and geochemistry, neotectonics, stratigraphy, or marine science. For students wishing to pursue less extensive training at the undergraduate level, the minor in geology is available.

What is Unique About Geology at SFSU?
Among the greatest attractions for studying geology at San Francisco State University is the University’s location in one of the world's most dynamic geologic environments, situated between the San Andreas Fault and San Francisco Bay. The geology faculty are closely involved with studies along the San Andreas Fault as well as investigations of related geologic hazards of the Bay Area and the broader geologic setting of the region. Frequent field excursions enable our students to study firsthand some of the critical evidence used in developing the theories of plate tectonics which have revolutionized our thinking about both Bay Area and global geology.

In addition to studies in the field, the department emphasizes student involvement with equipment such as global positioning and surveying systems, computer analysis, and laboratory skills such as micropaleontology and sedimentology processing.

Furthermore, the College of Science offers opportunities for study at three off-campus field stations. The Sierra Nevada Field Center, situated on the site of an abandoned gold mine, consists of a large dormitory and two smaller cabins on eight acres of land on the banks of the Yuba River.

The second off-campus site is the Moss Landing Marine Laboratories located on Monterey Bay and run jointly by several northern California State Universities. This research and teaching facility offers advanced training in marine sciences, as well as direct experience in ocean sampling with the research vessel Point Sur.

The third off-campus site is the Romberg Tiburon Center for Environmental Studies, located on the Tiburon Peninsula on the shores of San Francisco Bay. The facility is a field station for direct study of the estuarine environment. Sediment and water sampling are conducted from the research vessel Questuary.


Degrees & Programs

Bachelor of Science in Geology

Bachelor of Arts in Geology

Minor in Geology


Requirements

Bachelor of Science in Geology

The bachelor of science degree is intended for those seeking admission to graduate school or employment as a professional geologist. As part of their advanced course-work, students take a summer field mapping course, and complete a senior thesis that includes the written and oral presentation of a final research report.
Lower-Division Basic Science Requirements UNITS
GEOL 110 Physical Geology 4
GEOL 115 Historical Geology 3
GEOL 120 Geologic Techniques and Problem Solving 2
MATH 226 Calculus I 4
MATH 227 Calculus II 4
PHYS 220/222 General Physics with Calculus I and Laboratory
and either
3/1
PHYS 240/242 General Physics with Calculus III and Laboratory
or
PHYS 230/232 General Physics with Calculus II and Laboratory 3/1
CHEM 115 Essential Concepts of Chemistry 5
CHEM 215/216 Quantitative Applications of Chemistry Concepts and Laboratory 3/2
Total lower division requirements 35

Upper-Division Geology Requirements
GEOL 420 Mineralogy 4
GEOL 426 Petrology 4
GEOL 430 Structural Geology 4
GEOL 440 Paleontology 3
GEOL 460 Stratigraphy 4
GEOL 695 Field Methods in Geology 2
GEOL 696 Field Geology 5
GEOL 698 Senior Research and Thesis 2
Upper-division electives in geology on advisement chosen from courses numbered 400 or higher 15
Total upper division requirements 43
Total for the major 78

Bachelor of Arts in Geology

The bachelor of arts degree is designed for those seeking a geoscience teaching credential, or a strong background in geologic concepts and problem solving.

Students who are planning admission to graduate school through this program are encouraged to complete at least one year each of college chemistry, physics, and mathematics. It is also strongly recommended that students take a summer field course in geology.


Basic Science
UNITS
CHEM 115 Essential Concepts of Chemistry 5
PHYS 111/112 General Physics I and Laboratory
or
PHYS 220/222 General Physics with Calculus I and Laboratory 3/1
MATH 226 Calculus I 4
Electives in chemistry, physics, and mathematics on advisement to be chosen from CHEM 215/216, PHYS 121, 230, or 240, or MATH 227 3
Basic Geology
GEOL 110 Physical Geology 4
GEOL 115 Historical Geology 3
GEOL 120 Geologic Techniques and Problem Solving 2
GEOL 420 Mineralogy 4
GEOL 426 Petrology 4
GEOL 430 Structural Geology 4
GEOL 440 Paleontology 3
GEOL 460 Stratigraphy 4
GEOL 695 Field Methods in Geology 2
Geology Electives
Upper-division electives in geology on advisement chosen from courses numbered 400 or higher
6
Total for major 52

Minor in Geology

Students should consult with the Department of Geosciences as early as possible in order to be advised on the correct sequence of courses and the selection of elective courses. All courses in the minor must be taken for a letter grade since CR/NC will not be accepted in the program.
Basic Science UNITS
One course in chemistry or physics on advisement 4-5
Basic Geology
GEOL 110 Physical Geology 4
GEOL 115 Historical Geology 3
Electives
Upper-division electives in geology on advisement from courses numbered 400 or higher
13
Total for minor 24-25


Career Options Environmental consulting and service firms
  • Soils engineering
  • Earthquake hazard analysis
  • Environmental monitoring
  • Engineering geology
O il companies
  • Oil exploration
  • Geophysics
  • Energy research
  • Sequence stratigraphy
  • Micropaleontology
Mining companies
  • Mineral exploration
  • Mining engineering
  • Economic geology
  • Mine management
Government
  • U.S. Geological Survey
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • Bureau of Land Management
  • National Park Service
  • National Forest Service
  • CA Division of Mines and Geology
  • Natural history museums
Teaching
  • Universities
  • Community colleges
  • High schools


More Info Department of Geosciences
415/338-2061
E-mail: geosci@sfsu.edu
Fax: 415/338-7705
Web: http://tornado.sfsu.edu

How to apply
You may pick up an undergraduate application from any California State University campus, community college, or high school. You may have one sent to you by calling 415/338-7238.

Reaching SFSU by mail
To reach any SFSU department or program by mail, write to the specific office, followed by:
San Francisco State University
1600 Holloway Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94132

By phone
University Information
415/338-1111

Admissions Office
415/338-1634 or 6486
E-mail: ugadmit@sfsu.edu

SFSU on the Internet


San Francisco State University
1600 Holloway Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94132    415/338-2061
Last modified Tue, Jan 24, 2006, by the John Monteverdi