Become a Member Advertise with Us Looking for a Job? Contact Us

FAQ’s about Women in the Geosciences

(Please note: parts of this page are still under construction. Thank you for your patience.)

Current Status of Women in the Geosciences

- Questions -

How many women are practicing geoscientists? And how does highest degree earned affect employment? 79,100 women have a pre-Bachelor’s, Bachelor’s, Master’s or Ph.D. degree in the geosciences. 53,000 are employed full-time, 8,700 are employed part-time, 400 are unemployed and seeking a job, 5,100 are retired, and 10,100 are unemployed and not seeking a job (2000 data).

Employed Not in labor force Totals
Full-time Part-time Unemployed/seeking job Retired Not seeking job
Women, Physical Sciences:
Bachelor's 29,500 5,000 1,100 3,800 6,200 45,600
Master's 13,700 2,800 400 700 3,100 20,800
Ph.D.s 9,800 900 100 600 800 12,200
sum 53,000 8,700 1,600 5,100 10,100 78,600
From: National Science Foundation, 2000. Women, Minorities, and Persons With Disabilities in Science and Engineering: 2000. Arlington, VA. (NSF 00-327). Appendix, Table 3-11: U.S. scientists and engineers, by highest degree attained, broad occupation, sex, and employment status: 1997

What proportion of practicing geoscientists are women? How does the proportion change with highest degree earned?

What proportion of B.S. (Bachelor of Science) degrees in the Geosciences are earned by women?

What proportion of M.S. (Master of Science) degrees in the Geosciences are earned by women?

What proportion of Ph.D. (doctorate) degrees in the Geosciences are earned by women?

Where are women geoscientists working? What do women geoscientists earn, and how do women geoscientists’ salaries compare with their male counterparts?

What fields are women geoscientists going into?

- Answers -

How does highest degree earned affect employment?

What proportion of B.S. (Bachelor of Science) degrees in the Geosciences are earned by women?

What proportion of M.S. (Master of Science) degrees in the Geosciences are earned by women?

What proportion of Ph.D. (doctorate) degrees in the Geosciences are earned by women?

Where are women geoscientists working? What do women geoscientists earn, and how do women geoscientists’ salaries compare with their male counterparts?

What fields are women geoscientists going into?

History of Women in the Geosciences

- Questions -

Who was the first woman to become a geologist in the U.S.?

  • The first woman to earn a doctorate in geology (University of Michigan, 1888) was Mary Emilie Holmes (1850-1906). She was principally an educator who founded a college for freed women slaves in Mississippi and did missionary work.
  • The first woman to graduate with a degree in geology (Johns Hopkins, 1891) and then practice geology was Florence Bascom (1865-1945). She founded the Geology Department at Bryn Mawr. Find out more about her at http://writetools.com/women/stories/bascom_florence.html
Who was the first woman to head a state geological survey?
  • Genevieve Atwood, Utah,
  • Priscilla Grew, California
  • Priscilla Grew, Minnesota
  • Vicki Cowart, Colorado
What was the first woman president of a national professional geoscience society?

- Answers -

How to Become a Geoscientist

- Questions -


What are the different types of geoscientist? What are the steps to becoming a geoscientist? What do I need to become a certified Professional Geologist? What classes should I take in high school? Do I need to get a college degree? What degree should I get, a Bachelorís, Masterís, or Ph.D. degree?

- Answers -

What Scholarships are Available for Women Geoscience Students?

- Questions -

- Answers -

Disclaimer Comments? Questions? Please contact:
Laurie Scheuing
Acting Webmaster

Updated 03/26/12
Thank you for visiting our site!