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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato
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Program Offerings

Majoring in Earth Science means that you will study the earth’s interrelated physical systems of atmosphere, biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and how these systems are influenced by our unique place in the universe. Foundational to Earth Science is the interaction of people with their environment and to view the complex suite of chemical, physical, and biological processes at all spatial scales ranging from submicroscopic to planetary, and over time scales from the immediate to billions of years.

Explore the Avenues of Study in Earth Science

Explore your options and what you can study in Earth Science below!

Earth Science Major Specializations:

Geomorphology/Earth Surface Processes (how hillslopes change, rivers behave, glaciers operate, sand dunes form, rocks weather, and how a variety of landforms/landscapes develop)

Natural and Environmental Hazards/Disasters (avalanches, earthquakes, volcanic hazards, landslides, tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, tsunami, etc.)

Atmospheric Science (Weather, Climate)

Natural Resource Management (Conservation of our natural resources and geospatial tools to study these resources)

Earth Science-Geology Emphasis Specializations:

Earth History (the age of the Earth and the history of our planet, as told through the rock record)

Engineering Geology (making Earth ready for highways, buildings, bridges, dams, etc.)

Mineralogy and Petrology (how rocks and minerals are made and how we utilizes these resources)

Sedimentology and Stratigraphy (how sediments are transformed in to rock over geologic timescales and how packages of rock can be used to inform on Earth's past)

Resource Development (extracting building materials, oil/gas, other earth materials)

Earth Science Teaching (K12):

A Note from the Director of Earth Science Programs

Hi! Welcome to Minnesota State University, Mankato's Earth Science Program! My name is Phillip Larson and I'm the Director of the Earth Science Program. I hope as you explore our site that you see the amazing opportunities available to you to understand our planet through the Earth Science Program. Dirt, rocks, water, weather, ice... we've got it all and we're thrilled that you are taking a look at what we have to offer. If you have any questions don't hesitate to email me at