Study the earth beneath your feet, or worlds far away.
The Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences provides tools for understanding the processes that shape our planet and other solar system bodies. Because planets are complex systems, Earth and planetary sciences is by necessity an interdisciplinary field. We apply biology, chemistry, physics, and math to investigate topics such as early life on Earth, the structure of the Earth’s deep interior, the nature of contaminant transport, and the evidence for water on Mars. If you’ve developed a passion for the basic sciences and are looking for a way to study these sciences outside traditional disciplinary boundaries, Earth and planetary sciences is an ideal choice of major. Our majors offer a range of customization that allows students to focus on topics with the greatest relevance to their academic interests and career plans.
All students in the major have the opportunity, although are not required, to participate in faculty research programs. Many of our students take advantage of the varied research opportunities, providing them with valuable experience for future employment or graduate school.