Earth Science is an all-embracing term for the fields of science related to the planet Earth. It is a branch of planetary science (the study of planets). You can think of it as an “owner’s manual” for our planet.
In Earth Science classes, you will learn about the nature of science, in general, and as applied to the Earth. You will also learn about how the various parts of the Earth are interrelated.
Earth Science classes generally include discussions of: rocks and minerals; faults and earthquakes; plate tectonics; volcanoes, landslides, floods and other natural disasters; ore deposits and natural resources; the oceans and coasts; the atmosphere and weather; plus Earth’s climates and climate change. Earth Science classes also include discussions of Earth’s place in the Solar System and the Universe.
Earth Science classes aren’t dry and boring, full of theoretical data. Instead, you will learn about what’s around you, and what’s affecting you, ranging from the latest earthquake to pollution to the price of gas (i.e., resource depletion).
In Earth Science you will use tools from geography, physics, chemistry, biology, chronology, and mathematics to build an understanding of how the Earth system works and evolves.
Earth Science is a challenging scientific field, but it is also an exciting field, and most classes include field trips and hands-on experiences.
Careers in Earth Science include jobs in industry, ranging from petroleum engineers working for giant oil companies to engineering geologists who are their own bosses. Or you might work for the government as a park ranger, weather forecaster, or researcher. Your work might help save the world, in one of the many environmental fields.