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Communicating Geoscience to Non-Scientists

As a professional Applied Geoscientist, there may be times when you need to convey the results of your research or share your expertise with a non-technical audience. As someone working in a science profession, it’s easy to forget that much of the scientific understanding you take for granted as common knowledge, is actually not shared by large portions of the American population.

Whether speaking in person or in the form of a written article or report, there are some recommended guidelines for communicating with those outside your own industry.

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Getting Involved with AEG

Whether you are a new or longstanding member of the Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists, we hope that you have found your membership valuable. We also hope that you will consider becoming more involved with our organization. There are many ways you can give back to AEG through our Operational Committees and Technical Working Groups, at least one of which is sure to fall into an area in which you have an interest and expertise.

Our committees and working groups are integral to advancing the mission of AEG. We could not exist without them! The members and chairs who volunteer to be part of these groups also find the experience to be very rewarding.

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How Important is Field Work to my Career as an Applied Geologist?

Of all the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math), geology may be the one science where it is perhaps the most instructive and imperative to do your most significant work outside of an office or lab. As the study of the Earth and its processes, you will benefit greatly from time spent in the field, observing, measuring and studying the movement and interplay between soil, rock, water, environmental factors and engineered works.

Field work is an opportunity to practice a variety of techniques that will greatly assist you in your career. You will learn how to effectively take notes and measurements, hand-draw maps and sketches, use GIS or drawing software to create digitized versions of your mapping, take relevant photos to record your observations, synthesize findings and create a thorough field report.

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What Does the Future Demand Look Like for Applied Geoscientists?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a bright future for a career in the geosciences, with employment prospects expected to grow by 5% over the next 10 years, which is faster than the average job growth for other professions.

What is Causing the Growth in Geoscience Careers?

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Online Learning Geology Resources for Professionals and Hobbyists

Geology is a fascinating area of study whether you’re a professional geoscientist or an amateur rock hound. We’ve compiled some online resources to assist you with your continuing education as an Applied Geologist, to explore your interest as a potential future geologist or simply to expand your understanding of this compelling subject for personal enrichment.

Virtual Geology Resources are for Everyone

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The Importance of Diversity in the Geosciences

Despite some progress, in the United States the geosciences have remained one of the least-diverse among science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields in terms of racial representation. A recent study showed that almost 90% of doctoral degrees were awarded to white people, and faculty of color hold only 3.8% of tenured or tenure track positions in the top 100 geoscience departments in the U.S.

While significant gains have been made in terms of greater gender equality within the geosciences field, racial and ethnic diversity hasn’t seen much improvement.

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Disciplines Practiced in Applied Geosciences

The geosciences (or Earth sciences) are comprised of scientific studies of the planet Earth. These include atmospheric sciences, environmental sciences, soil sciences, glaciology, geography, geology, geophysics, hydrology, oceanography, limnology, and space sciences.

Within the geosciences, there are numerous subdisciplines. For instance, as an Environmental or Engineering Geologist, you could specialize in groundwater, environmental (contaminant) remediation, geologic hazards, dam and tunnel design, coastal erosion, land-use planning, environmental impacts and mitigation, disaster management plans and policies, and a variety of associated disciplines. For a detailed list of many of the sub-disciplines within applied geoscience, visit this extensive list on the PROGRESS website .

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Why is it Important to be Licensed to Practice Applied Geology?

If you are currently in college, taking courses and studying with the goal of becoming an Applied Geologist, your instructors may or may not be preparing you toward becoming licensed as a Professional Geologist (P.G.). Since licensure is not required for academia to teach geosciences, not all professors and faculty are familiar with the licensing requirements that you, as an Applied Geologist in a consulting, industry or governmental capacity, will need to attain.

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What coursework should I take to become a successful Applied Geoscientist?

What is a geoscientist? Geoscientists (also often called geologists or geophysicists) study the physical aspects of the earth to inform practical applications in engineering, energy production, water conservation, hazards and more. They may work to find and preserve natural resources like groundwater, metals, and petroleum. Geoscientists often perform laboratory and field tests to monitor the environment and investigate sources of pollution, including those that affect health.

Some qualities that are essential for a career in geosciences include: 

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Why is AEG membership beneficial to me (as an Applied Geoscientist)?

 

 

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