Geologist Salary

Geologists in the United States take home approximately $58K annually on average. With some bonuses approaching $20K and certain profit sharing proceeds approaching $26K, overall incomes of Geologists spread between $40K and $115K depending on individual performance. This group's pay is mainly influenced by geographic location, followed by the specific employer and experience level. Medical benefits are awarded to most, and a strong majority earn dental coverage. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Generally, women make up less than a third of all Geologists who answered the questionnnaire. This snapshot results from replies to PayScale's salary survey.
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$39,714 - $110,065
$40K
$58K
$110K
MEDIAN: $58,467
10%
50%
90%

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$15.65 - $38.29
$16
$22
$38
MEDIAN: $22.46
10%
50%
90%

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$0$115K
Salary $39,714 - $110,065
Bonus $101.08 - $20,344
Profit Sharing $0.00 - $29,361
Commission $6,000
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).
)
$39,680 - $115,522
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 20 Sep 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 975
Hourly Data $0$38
Hourly Rate $15.65 - $38.29
Overtime $19.60 - $36.99
Annual Data $0$115K
Bonus $101.08 - $20,344
Commission $6,000
Profit Sharing $0.00 - $29,361
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).
)
$39,680 - $115,522
  • Country: United States
  • Currency: USD
  • Updated: 20 Sep 2017
  • Individuals Reporting: 171

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

Job Description for Geologist

Geologists have both theoretical and scientific duties, as well as many practical responsibilities, so wide-ranging knowledge in different areas is important in this position. A bachelor's degree in geology is generally required, and knowledge of mathematics, geology, chemistry, and physics is also necessary. Geologists must also have good communication and writing skills, knowledge of all relevant laws and regulations, and knowledge of software development to analyze geological data. As with most careers in the sciences, writing research papers may be a significant part of the job, and these may be presented at conferences. Some geologists also teach at universities.

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Geologist Tasks

  • 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.
  • Communicate with diverse groups like landmen, marketers, regulatory personnel, etc.
  • Generate data and visualizations such as mineral charts, soil analyses, groundwater modeling, maps, etc.

Common Career Paths for Geologist


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It's not very common for Geologists to move on to become Petroleum Geologists. Average pay for a Petroleum Geologist is $103K annually. The most common next step for a Geologist is to become a Senior Geologist or an Environmental Project Manager. The former position pays an additional $27K per year on average, and the latter position pays $6K more per year.

Geologist Job Listings

Popular Employer Salaries for Geologist


Well-known firms with a reputation for hiring numerous Geologists include Arcadis, Inc., URS Corporation Inc., Aecom Corporation, Amec Earth and Environmental, Inc., and CH2M Hill. Geologists seeking a sizable paycheck can earn the most at Weatherford International, Inc, where the average salary comes to $87K. Other big spenders include Chevron Corporation, Weston Solutions, Inc., and Resolution Copper, top-paying firms where Geologists see paychecks nearing $85K, $75K, or $71K.

Aecom Technology Group, Inc., Arcadis, Inc. and URS Corporation Inc. are three other employers with a reputation for below-average pay, showing salaries around $50K, $50K, and $53K.

Popular Skills for Geologist


Geologists seem to wield many skills on the job. Most notably, facility with Oil and Gas Formation Evaluation, Environmental Compliance, and Borehole Formation Evaluation (FE) are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 73 percent, 58 percent, and 51 percent, respectively. Skills that pay less than market rate include Geographic Information Systems, Microsoft Office, and Microsoft Word. Most people who know Microsoft Excel also know Environmental Consulting and Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

Pay by Experience Level for Geologist

Pay by Experience for a Geologist has a positive trend. An entry-level Geologist with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $51,000 based on 711 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Geologist with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $64,000 based on 269 salaries. An experienced Geologist which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $76,000 based on 209 salaries. A Geologist with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $90,000 based on 110 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $58,012

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Midland is home to an above-average pay rate for Geologists, 90 percent higher than the national average. Geologists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Houston (+79 percent), Oklahoma City (+69 percent), San Francisco (+28 percent), and Tucson (+21 percent). With compensation 19 percent below the national average, Minneapolis is not known for hefty paychecks and actually represents the lowest-paying market. Employers also pay below the national average in Atlanta (18 percent lower) and Chicago (12 percent lower).

Geologist Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Geologist?

Geologist in Oak Ridge:
"Mostly paperwork, you can put away your hammer."
Pros: Opportunities for travel; great for single people. In "off seasons" you mostly write reports, which is mind-numbingly dull work. During the field season, there is lots of travel and work outdoors in a variety of conditions. Good if you're not salaried, because you can top 70 hours per week on your feet in the field. Not a lot of time with family; managers regularly put in 55+ hours per week to submit reports and workplans.
Cons: Too much travel for a family, a lot of dull reports, not rewarding, terrible pay.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Geologist

Gender

Female
27 %
Male
73 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 160 votes.
Less than 1 year
13%
1-4 years
41%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
15%
20 years or more
9%
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Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Geologist Salaries

▲55%

▲31%

▲11%

National Average
$58,000

▼12%

Skills That Affect Geologist Salaries

Oil and Gas Formation Evaluation
▲72%

Environmental Compliance
▲58%

Borehole Formation Evaluation (FE)
▲51%




National Average
$58,000








Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 160 votes.

Gender

Female
27 %
Male
73 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
13%
1-4 years
41%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
15%
20 years or more
9%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 89%
dental benefits
Dental: 75%
vision benefits
Vision: 66%
no benefits
None: 10%
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