Department of Geosciences

The Department of Geosciences pursues fundamental, cutting–edge and strategic research in areas of the geosciences that have great societal impact and educates students for careers that advance the forefront of knowledge in the geosciences. It focus on development and management of natural resources, assessment of natural hazards, understanding of processes that modify the Earth’s surface and how they respond to natural and anthropogenic forces, and investigation of the habitability of Earth and other planets in the past, present and future. View the information below to learn more.

Department of Geosciences - Pushing the Frontiers of Research

An international leader in the geosciences, Penn State University is pushing the frontiers of research. With new instruments and new, cutting-edge techniques, students and researchers are addressing societal relevant problems that will sustain us all into the future.


Marla Korpar
Recent EMS alums serve as undergraduate poster exhibition judges

Annie Tamalavage and Marla Korpar, both 2013 EMS graduates, were among a handful of judges who returned to Penn State's University Park campus to serve as judges for the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences' (EMS) Undergraduate Poster Exhibition.

Shake Rattle Rocks
Fifth-graders get hands-on science lessons at annual Shake, Rattle & Rocks event

The three-day Shake, Rattle & Rocks program gave fifth-graders from the region the chance to experience what it means to be an earth scientist.

Kickoff meeting
Project to develop computational tools for coupled human-natural systems

Penn State researchers have received a $20 million, five-year project with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) looks to create a state-of-the-art framework of computational tools that will help to assess the impacts of weather-related variability and change.

South American fossil tomatillos show nightshades evolved earlier than thought

Delicate fossil remains of tomatillos found in Patagonia, Argentina, show that this branch of the economically important family that also includes potatoes, peppers, tobacco, petunias and tomatoes existed 52 million years ago, long before the dates previously ascribed to these species, according to an international team of scientists.