I need help/answers from actual geologists

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geologist_major1113 in Chattanooga, Tennessee

46 months ago

I've always had a great interest in the Earth and learning about all of its processes. I'm majoring in geology. I've heard many different things about the best way to become a great geologist, but I need some straight answers. Do I need a PhD? What kinds of jobs could I get with a masters? Could I get better jobs with a PhD (not higher paying, i mean more interesting). I know I have to have a PhD to do research, or so I've heard. What is the best field to go into in geology? Help?

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BN97201 in Portland, Oregon

35 months ago

geologist_major1113 in Chattanooga, Tennessee said: I've always had a great interest in the Earth and learning about all of its processes. I'm majoring in geology. I've heard many different things about the best way to become a great geologist, but I need some straight answers. Do I need a PhD? What kinds of jobs could I get with a masters? Could I get better jobs with a PhD (not higher paying, i mean more interesting). I know I have to have a PhD to do research, or so I've heard. What is the best field to go into in geology? Help?

It depends on what you want to do. In some fields such as environmental consulting, having a Ph.D. is not necessary and may even be a detriment, as those with Ph.D. degrees sometimes are viewed as being "too academic" and not practical enough. Unless you're pursuing certain career paths (academia, USGS, perhaps certain petroleum industry positions) a Master's is all you'll need.

As far as the "best" specialty, that depends on how you define "best" and where your interests lie. I've been a hydrogeologist for three decades, have had continuous employment, am well paid, and have had interesting, challenging work with which I get to work with other interesting and challenging people (other scientists, business people, attorneys). I've never regretted my decision. Your mileage may vary, of course.

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Happy Hydro in Hesperia, California

34 months ago

geologist_major1113 in Chattanooga, Tennessee said: I've always had a great interest in the Earth and learning about all of its processes. I'm majoring in geology. I've heard many different things about the best way to become a great geologist, but I need some straight answers. Do I need a PhD? What kinds of jobs could I get with a masters? Could I get better jobs with a PhD (not higher paying, i mean more interesting). I know I have to have a PhD to do research, or so I've heard. What is the best field to go into in geology? Help?

I agree with BN97201. I have my Master's and am also a hydrogeologist. I love my career. I personally would like to go back for a PhD, but it is because I would like to pursue the research end of the industry. However, for a career in the industry, many of my coworkers have Master's degrees and most have a Bachelor's. Generally, a Master's is helpful, but not a required and a PhD is not necessary unless you want to go into research or a more technical route in the industry.

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