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Geologist Salary (United States)

Geologists in the United States take home an average $60K per year. Cash earnings for Geologists — including $23K in bonuses and $30K in profit sharing proceeds near the top of the pay scale — generally stretch from $40K to $128K depending on individual performance. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by the company, followed by the particular city and experience level. A large number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a fair number collect dental insurance. Job satisfaction for Geologists is high. Most Geologists survey respondents are men (74 percent). This snapshot results from replies to PayScale's salary survey.
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Geologist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$39,797 - $119,190
(Median)
40K
60K
85K
120K
MEDIAN: $60,475
10%
50%
75%
90%
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Geologist Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$15.02 - $45.10
(Median)
15
19
23
31
45
MEDIAN: $23.00
10%
25%
50%
75%
90%
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National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$39,797 - $119,190  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $22,551  
Profit Sharing
$511 - $29,866  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$39,525 - $128,381  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 1,365
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$25$50$75
Hourly Rate
$15.02 - $45.10  
   
Overtime
$19.99 - $46.32  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Bonus
$0.00 - $22,551  
   
Profit Sharing
$511 - $29,866  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$39,525 - $128,381  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 11 Dec 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 172
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Job Description for Geologist

Geologists are scientists who study the matter that constitutes the Earth and the processes in history that have shaped it. They also study natural hazards like earthquakes, volcanic activity, tsunamis and weather storms and use this data to develop faster ways to warn the public of impending disasters. They are responsible for public safety and promoting it in every aspect of their work. Right now, the focus for geologists is climate change history and evidence and how it will affect the Earth in the future.
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Geologist Tasks
  • Communicate with diverse groups like landmen, marketers, regulatory personnel, etc.
  • Generate data and visualizations such as mineral charts, soil analyses, groundwater modeling, maps, etc.
  • Review, integrate, quality control and collect data for geologic, hydrologic and other databases.
  • Investigate sites, take samples, and oversee delineation of land and active worksites.

Common Career Paths for Geologist

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Geologists sometimes assume positions such as Petroleum Geologists. That role pays $101K per year on average. A common career progression for a Geologist is to become a Senior Geologist or a Environmental Project Manager. Compared to Geologists, the first group earns $22K more on average, and the second group earns $3K more.

Geologist Job Listings

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job title / company
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Popular Employer Salaries for Geologist

URS Corporation Inc., Chevron Corporation, Amec Earth and Environmental, Inc., Arcadis, Inc., and Weatherford International, Inc are all popular places to work. Chevron Corporation offers the largest salaries in town ($144K on average), but the considerable range in workers' salaries creates a rather varied pay scale that stretches from $101K to $308K.

Popular Skills for Geologist

Survey results imply that Geologists deploy a substantial tool kit of skills at work. Most notably, facility with Environmental Compliance, Data Analysis, and Project Management are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 50 percent, 45 percent, and 12 percent, respectively. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Environmental Consulting, Microsoft Office, and Geographic Information Systems. Most people experienced in Microsoft Excel also know Environmental Consulting and Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

Pay by Experience Level for Geologist

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For many Geologists, experience and pay levels seem to be correlated; more years in the business generally lead to more money. Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience have a median salary of $52K. Those who have been around for five to 10 years can expect to take home more — $62K on average. Geologists bring in $74K after working for 10 to 20 years. Big financial gains seem to result from working for more than two decades; veterans in this group report earning $98K on average.

Pay Difference By Location

Dallas
up arrow 88%
Oklahoma City
up arrow 81%
up arrow 80%
Midland
up arrow 72%
up arrow 23%
Los Angeles
up arrow 8%
Oakland
up arrow 1%
National Average
$61,000
Atlanta
up arrow 2%
Salt Lake City
up arrow 4%
Seattle
up arrow 6%
Austin
up arrow 11%
Tampa
up arrow 12%
Phoenix
up arrow 16%
Nashville
up arrow 30%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
For those looking to make money, Geologists in Dallas enjoy an exceptional pay rate, 88 percent above the national average. Geologists will also find cushy salaries in Oklahoma City (+81 percent), Houston (+80 percent), Midland (+72 percent), and Denver (+23 percent). Geologists in Nashville take home the lowest salaries, earning a whopping 30 percent less than the national average. Employers pay around 16 percent less in Phoenix and 12 percent less in Tampa, below-median salaries for those in this field.

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Experience Affects Geologist Salaries

National Average
$61,000

Skills That Affect Geologist Salaries

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied Image
Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5 based on 376 votes.

Gender

Female
26%
female alumni
 
Male
74%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
11%
1-4 years
38%
5-9 years
26%
10-19 years
16%
20 years or more
10%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 89% dental benefits Dental: 76%
vision benefits Vision: 63% employee benefits None: 9%