Inegrated, Hands-On Studies Preparing You for a Career or to Transfer On

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Program Overview

Interested in the study of Earth and its complex systems? College of Western Idaho’s (CWI) Geosciences program, incorporating essential aspects of geology, offers a comprehensive exploration of Earth’s processes, materials, and history. This Associate of Science degree lays a strong foundation in geology and other scientific disciplines like mathematics, chemistry, physics, and biology, essential for understanding the dynamic interactions within Earth's systems. Perfect for those drawn to earth science, the program leads you through various aspects of geology, environmental science, and natural resource management, preparing you for advanced studies at a four-year university.

Your journey will include studying rock formations, geological structures, and mineral resources, alongside key environmental and sustainability issues. Through engaging coursework and practical fieldwork, you will develop a deeper understanding of geologic processes, from plate tectonics to erosion, and how they shape our world. Graduates find opportunities in diverse fields, including the oil and gas industry, mining, environmental consulting, and government sectors.

Degree or Certificate Type

Associate of Science



Additional cost may apply.

Time to Complete

2 years

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Learning Opportunities

  • Integrated Study of Geology and GIS: Gain valuable geology insights while learning Geographic Information Systems (GIS), a critical tool in modern geoscience.
  • Hands-On Geological Fieldwork: Participate in field trips and labs for practical experience in geological mapping, rock and mineral identification, and data analysis.
  • Environmental and Geologic Processes: Understand key environmental challenges and the geological processes that impact our planet.
  • Diverse Geoscience Careers: Explore career paths in geology, environmental science, natural resource management, and beyond.
  • Preparation for Advanced Geological Studies: Equip yourself for seamless transfer to pursue a bachelor's degree in geology or related fields.

Area of Study

Degrees & Certificates

Geosciences – Associate of Science Degree




Person looking through a microscope in a greenhouse

Career Opportunities

  • Postsecondary Teachers


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

  • Natural Sciences Managers

    Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as life sciences, physical sciences, mathematics, statistics, and research and development in these fields.


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

  • Geoscientists, Except Hydrologists and Geographers

    Study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the Earth. May use geological, physics, and mathematics knowledge in exploration for oil, gas, minerals, or underground water; or in waste disposal, land reclamation, or other environmental problems. May study the Earth’s internal composition, atmospheres, and oceans, and its magnetic, electrical, and gravitational forces. Includes mineralogists, paleontologists, stratigraphers, geodesists, and seismologists.


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

  • Hydrologists

    Research the distribution, circulation, and physical properties of underground and surface waters; and study the form and intensity of precipitation and its rate of infiltration into the soil, movement through the earth, and return to the ocean and atmosphere.


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

  • Geological Technicians, Except Hydrologic Technicians

    Assist scientists or engineers in the use of electronic, sonic, or nuclear measuring instruments in laboratory, exploration, and production activities to obtain data indicating resources such as metallic ore, minerals, gas, coal, or petroleum. Analyze mud and drill cuttings. Chart pressure, temperature, and other characteristics of wells or bore holes.


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

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*Data sourced from Lightcast™ (2023), a global leader in labor market analytics, and limited to the state of Idaho. Contact CWI Institutional Research for questions regarding this data.


Step 1

Step 2

  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
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Geology Club provides like-minded students an opportunity to collectively pursue their interests in geology as well as advocating for spreading knowledge throughout the student body at CWI. With the assistance of our club advisor and other faculty...


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