The College of Science is excited to announce the launch of a transformative new B.A. degree program offered in the Department of Geosciences titled Geosciences and Society. The program is designed for students who are interested in using a foundational understanding of geosciences in pursuit of careers in areas that are of major importance in today’s changing world.
Geosciences and Society combines a tailored geoscience core curriculum centered around topics of considerable societal and applied interest, with a solid foundation in one of several social science options, including law, journalism, and public policy.
“This B.A. degree was intentionally crafted for the student who has a love of planet Earth but doesn’t necessarily want to be a geologist, in the traditional sense," said Dr. Jessica Kapp, Associate Professor of Practice and Director of Undergraduate Studies in Geosciences. "It is a great option for students who don’t want to take the full slate of math and foundational science that our B.S. tracks require, and instead take social science classes to begin building a foundation in a potential career area other than geoscience such as law, public policy, or journalism."
For students interested in taking the Law or Policy tracks, the required Geoscience classes cover subject matter that is regularly involved in current legal or policy matters, such as climate change and natural resources. The geoscience focus of the Science Communications track is slightly different, to also include subjects of considerable public interest, such as paleontology, which are less likely to be of concern to policy makers and the law. Geosciences course requirements include classes such as Global Change, Ocean Science, and Energy and Mineral Resources, all of which present critical content for someone looking to apply geoscience principles to a public-facing career.
The offerings in each of the three social science areas have been chosen to build basic knowledge in an interface field that will allow students to be competitive at either entry-level positions (for example in municipal government or science communication), or as they pursue further education in law, policy, or (with certification) secondary science education.
"The program is very flexible, with more free electives than any of our BS tracks, to allow students to follow other passions, try new things, and take courses that can provide needed skills for them as they enter the workforce," said Dr. Kapp. "They will graduate with a strong geoscience knowledge base, as well as a basis in a social science area that can give them a leg up in the workforce, or for applying to graduate programs in law, public policy, journalism, education, business, and so much more."
Curricular requirements in this degree allow for more flexibility in a student’s pursuit of other interests, with plenty of open elective credits to provide the opportunity for double-majoring, minoring, or simply exploring other course work to enhance one’s educational experience, career training, or preparation for graduate studies. The degree is open to all students, with no minimum GPA or other academic restrictions.
To learn more about the program and the Department of Geosciences at the University of Arizona, please click here.