Influences on Geoscience Master's Students' Career Goals

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The Geoscience Career Master's Preparation Survey by AGI and AAG inquired about Master's students‘ career goals and what influenced those goals. Looking across Geology programs, some students' most common career goals include working in the private sector, in teaching, education or diversity, and aspiring towards management positions. In Geography departments, Master's students are looking to pursue teaching or education careers, work in the GIS field, or pursue industry careers in general.

The graph shows what students indicate as the most (or least) influential items regarding some of these cited career goals. Geoscience undergraduate courses (65% and 51%) appear to be the dominant influence (including "Influential" and "Very Influential") on Master's students' career goals in Geology and Geography, respectively. Research advisors in Geology (52%) also had quite a positive influence, whereas in Geography, they were not as influential (39% being "Influential" or "Very Influential"), but are clearly still important for geographers. Campus administrators have very little influence on students' career goals (84% and 85% being "Not Influential" in Geology and Geography, respectively). Similarly, academic counselors (58% and 64%) and professional societies (77% and 85%) also have little influence (including "Not Influential" and "Somewhat Influential") on students' specific career goals in Geology and Geography, respectively.

Influences on Students' Career Goals

This is the second in a series of seven Currents disseminating results from the AGI and AAG Geoscience Career Master's Preparation Survey. For more information about this research, its outcomes and resources available to departments, please visit: