Earth and Planetary Science
EPS Near-Surface Geochemistry and Geobiology

The Earth and Planetary Science Department Has Strong Showing At The 2017 Letters and Science Major Exploration Fair

Thursday, November 9, 2017

The Earth and Planetary Science department had a strong showing at the 2017 Letters and Science Major Exploration Fair.

Held at the Pauley Ballroom on campus, EPS Undergraduate advisor Nadine Elena, along with EPS 4th year geophysics major Mariel Nelson (als0 president of GAB) promoted the numerous educational opportunities the department held for incoming UC Berkeley students.

The Earth and Planetary Science department currently offers the following Majors and Minors:

Planetary Science (Major and Minor)

Planetary science encompasses the study of the physical and chemical nature of planetary bodies both in the Solar System and in extrasolar systems. The formation of planets, the forces that sculpted their orbits, the processes that shaped their interiors, surfaces, and atmospheres and the development of life all fall under its rubric. Understanding these complex phenomena requires knowledge of astronomy and astrophysics, earth science, meteorology, atmospheric science, space science, plasma physics, chemistry, and biology. The Planetary Science major has been developed to study the remarkable interface among these disciplines.


Atmospheric Science (Major and Minor)

The Atmospheric Science major explores the fundamental natural processes controlling atmospheric composition, circulation dynamics, and climate. Understanding how these processes have changed in the past and may change in the future are among the greatest intellectual and technological challenges of our time. Topics covered will include the physics of climate variability and climate change, changes in stratospheric ozone, coupling of atmospheric chemistry and climate, changes in the oxidation capacity of the troposphere, smog, and the impacts of atmosphere-biosphere exchange on atmospheric composition.

Environmental Earth Science (Major and Minor)

The environmental earth science major is designed to provide students with a broad background in the earth sciences with an emphasis on environmental sciences. Interrelationships between physical, biological, and chemical processes at Earth's surface will be emphasized. The major focuses more broadly on the natural sciences by using earth science mainly as a base for expanding outward depending upon students' interests by incorporating courses in biology, hydrology, hazardous waste management, ecology and natural resources. The program is designed to provide background for graduate study in environmental science, preparation for work within governmental agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency, Bureau of Land Management, United States Geological Survey or consulting firms, or broader involvement in land use planning, business, policy, law or management.

Geology (Major and Minor)

Geology is the science of the Earth—of its minerals and processes, of its origin and evolution. It is a broad science concerned with a vast range of physical phenomena in both space and time, and it requires a broad scientific background. Trained geologists can address a wide range of concerns, including energy supply, mineral resources, and environmental protection. This major provides a strong background in the processes shaping the Earth. It emphasizes quantitative understanding and a strong foundation in the physical sciences.

Geophysics (Major and Minor)

The Geophysics major is designed to provide students with theoretical, field and laboratory experience in studying geodynamic processes and the structure of the Earth and other planets. It is designed for students with good physics and mathematics ability. It provides a solid background in physical science and mathematics with an emphasis on the physics of the Earth.


Marine Science (Major and Minor)

The ocean plays a central role in physical, biological, chemical, and geological processes on Earth. The field of marine science thus requires an understanding of the interactions between the biosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, and atmosphere. Some examples of the current research directions of societal concern in the marine sciences include: the role of the ocean in climate change; the ocean's role in climate phenomena such as El Niño and La Niña (and their effect on modern marine ecosystems); the history of El Niño and other climatic/oceanographic events recorded in marine sediments and corals; coastal pollution and its effect on coastal marine ecosystems; and coastal erosion (natural and human-caused).


Feel free to contact our department to learn more information about our Undergraduate and Graduate programs and how to apply.