Earth Sciences graduate destinations

Earth Scientists develop a combination of analytical, teamworking, numerical and communication skills. This can prove a great attraction to employers, and Bristol's geoscientists do consistently well in the job market.

Data obtained from

  • Geology (BSc and MSci), including joint honours courses and courses with study abroad
  • Environmental Geoscience (BSc and MSci) including courses with study abroad
  • Palaeontology and Evolution (MSci)
  • Graduates from the UK 

Responses were received from 31 UK graduates from 2017/18; this is a response rate of 64.6%


Most important activityPercentage of graduates
Paid work for an employer 45%
Self-employment/freelancing 0%
Running my own business 3%
Developing a creative, artistic or professional portfolio 0%
Voluntary/unpaid work for an employer 6%
Engaged in a course of study, training or research 29%
Taking time out to travel 0%
Caring for someone 0%
Retired 0%
Unemployed and looking for work 10%
Doing something else 6%

Sector information

Earth Scientists are well placed to enter careers in a range of sectors not always related to their degree subject. Examples include IT and management consultancy, law, investment banking, accountancy, marketing, Civil Service and the armed forces.

SectorNumber of graduates

Restaurants and mobile food service activities


Support activities for petroleum and natural gas mining


Support activities for petroleum and natural gas mining


Mining of other non-ferrous metal ores


Other sectors (6 sectors)


Employers and occupations

As 70% of all graduate vacancies don’t ask for specific degree subjects, Earth Science graduates enter all sorts of careers from community work and sports coaching to broadcasting and land surveying.

Examples of employers

  • Schlumberger Ltd
  • Rio Tinto
  • Grant Thornton
  • Shropshire Wildlife Trust
  • Kairos

Examples of occupations

  • Environmental Consultant
  • Site Engineer
  • Think Tank Analyst
  • Mineralogist
  • Geophysicist

Further study

Postgraduate study is often required for those wishing to enter a career in Earth Sciences. Many Bristol postgraduates have gone on to successful careers within fields such as oil and mineral exploration, mapping, civil engineering and environmental consultancies, university research and teaching, conservation organisations, museums, cartography, hydrology and broadcasting.

Qualification typePercentage of graduates

Higher degree, mainly by research (e.g. PhD, DPhil, MPhil, MRes)


Higher degree, mainly by taught course (e.g. MA, MSc, MBA)


Postgraduate diploma or certificate (including PGCE/PGDE)


Professional qualification


Undergraduate degree (including integrated master’s degrees) (e.g. BA, BSc, MBChB, MEng)

Other undergraduate diploma or certificate not specified above 0%
Other qualification 0%
Not aiming for a formal qualification 0%

Explore your career options

You can explore specific sectors and career options on the Prospects website: What can I do with my degree?

Information request

If you need more information about graduate destinations, please email us.

Connect with alumni

Use Bristol Connects and LinkedIn to find out what others from your course are doing now and how they can help you.

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