Adolescence Education: Earth Science (7-12) Major

You’ll want a strong foundation in the space and geosciences if your ambition is to teach Earth science in a middle or high school. Your SUNY Cortland program includes course work in all areas of Earth science needed for New York state certification together with supporting courses for the General Science extension. Add quality professional teacher education preparation, and you’ll be on track for a rewarding career in the public or private schools.

Career Potential

  • Earth science teacher (grades 7-12)
  • Naturalist or interpreter
  • Earth scientist

What Will I Learn?

  • Study the space, atmospheric, geological and water systems of Earth
  • Learn classroom skills for effective teaching
  • Develop writing and presentation skills for professional developmentStudent teaching in local school
  • Take course work in related math and sciences
  • Fieldwork and hands-on learning infused throughout the program

Special Features

  • New laboratories with state-of-the-art equipment and instrumentation
  • Easy access to exceptional field sites in the Finger Lakes and beyond
  • Extensive collections of mineral, rock and fossil specimens
  • Student teaching with partner school districts
  • Large, engaged alumni network in a wide range of positions

Get Involved

College is more than a classroom. Enhance your experience with extracurricular opportunities:

  • As a lab teaching assistant or peer mentor, you’ll help other students and gain a deeper understanding of your courses
  • Work with a faculty member on research with opportunities to present your work regionally, nationally or even internationally
  • Volunteer for community service with local environmental and school groups

Student Club

Next Steps

Contact Us

Office: Bowers Hall, Room 144
Phone: 607-753-2815

Fast Facts

  • SUNY Cortland owns its own scenic gorge, Hoxie Gorge, just minutes from campus
  • The Cortland Geology Department runs summer programs in field geology at the Brauer Field Station near Albany in an area of outstanding fossil-rich Devonian rocks
  • Bear Swamp on the northwestern edge of Cortland County has a buried crater from a meteorite impact about 444 million years ago
  • The Finger Lakes near Cortland were eroded by an ice sheet and the deepest, Seneca Lake, has a bedrock bottom that is over 1,000 feet below sea level

Type of Degree

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
Credit Hours: 124


The Geology Department recognizes excellence in its students with four awards:

  • Maxwell Hawkins Award
  • Graham Heaslip Award
  • John L. Fauth Award
  • James Kradyna Award

Continuing students in the adolescence education: Earth science program are eligible for three departmental scholarships:

  • Robert C. Brauer Memorial Scholarship
  • Kronman Family Scholarship
  • James Kradyna Summer Field Camp Scholarship
  • John and Barbara Fauth Geology Scholarship

See all scholarship opportunities

Related Majors

  • Geology
  • Physics: Concentration in Geophysics or Environmental Science