Geologist Salary

Pay for Geologists in the United States sits in the ballpark of $62K annually. Total incomes of Geologists incorporate potential for, in a few cases, more than $25K from bonuses and close to $30K from profit sharing; these performance components cause packages to range between $40K and $133K. This group's pay is mainly influenced by the specific employer, followed by geography and years of experience. Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Geologists. Making up 74 percent of those who took the survey, male Geologists greatly outnumber their female counterparts. This overview is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$39,911 - $122,506
(Median)
$40K
$62K
$120K
MEDIAN: $61,705
10%
50%
90%

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$15.22 - $45.34
(Median)
$15
$24
$45
MEDIAN: $23.00
10%
50%
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
$39,911 - $122,506  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $24,864  
Profit Sharing
$506 - $30,483  
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).
)
$39,678 - $133,345  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 1,391
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
$15.22 - $45.34  
   
Overtime
$20.22 - $45.95  
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 - $24,864  
   
Profit Sharing
$506 - $30,483  
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).
)
$39,678 - $133,345  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 189
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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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Though some Geologists move into positions like Petroleum Geologist (where the average salary is $101K), this progression is not the norm. Career advancement for the typical Geologist often leads to becoming a Senior Geologist or an Environmental Project Manager; median salaries in these positions are $22K higher and $2K higher, respectively.

Geologist Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Geologist


URS Corporation Inc., Arcadis, Inc., Chevron Corporation, Amec Earth and Environmental, Inc., and Aecom Corporation are top-notch employers for Geologists in this area. The biggest paychecks can be found at Chevron Corporation — the median salary there is $139K; however, employees are subject to a wide range in pay, with the lowest salaries sitting near $84K and highest ones in the neighborhood of $233K. Other big spenders include Weatherford International, Inc, CH2M Hill, and URS Corporation Inc., top-paying firms where Geologists see paychecks nearing $87K, $67K, or $53K.

Arcadis, Inc. offers the least pay with a median salary of $45K; furthermore, salaries there max out at only $67K. Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include Amec Earth and Environmental, Inc. at $51K, and Aecom Corporation where $52K is the norm, but it is worth noting that some Geologists there earn up to $88K.

Popular Skills for Geologist


Survey results imply that Geologists deploy a deep pool of skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Environmental Compliance, Data Analysis, and Project Management are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 48 percent, 44 percent, and 11 percent, respectively. Skills that pay less than market rate include Environmental Consulting, Geographic Information Systems, and Microsoft Office. For most people, competency in Microsoft Excel indicates knowledge of 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. Salaries for inexperienced workers average out to $64K, and those with five to 10 years' experience earn a higher median of $52K. Geologists with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $74K. Average wages for folks with more than 20 years of experience come out to around $100K.

Pay Difference by Location


Dallas offers some of the highest pay in the country for Geologists, 83 percent above the national average. Geologists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Houston (+81 percent), Oklahoma City (+78 percent), Midland (+70 percent), and Denver (+20 percent). Location significantly influences compensation, with Nashville Geologists earning much less — 27 percent less — than the national average. Phoenix and Tampa are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries tend to be 16 percent less than the median.

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Experience Affects Geologist Salaries




National Average
$62,000


Skills That Affect Geologist Salaries

Environmental Compliance
up arrow 48%

Data Analysis
up arrow 44%


Data Modeling
up arrow 4%

National Average
$62,000








Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 297 votes.

Gender

Female
26 %
Male
74 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
12%
1-4 years
37%
5-9 years
24%
10-19 years
17%
20 years or more
11%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 88% dental benefits Dental: 76%
vision benefits Vision: 63% employee benefits None: 10%
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