Geomorphologist Job Description

Updated July 19, 2017

A geomorphologist is a person who studies how the earth's surfaces were formed by rivers, mountains, oceans, air, or ice and how these elements will change the landforms in the future. A geomorphologist gathers organic materials from the earth like sediments from mountains, water from streams or rivers, and pollen from flowers. They are trying to figure out if any these materials from the earth had an effect on way that some lands are shaped.

Job Duties

One of the main duties of a geomorphologist is collecting data in the field. The geomorphologist will dig in the dirt, get water from a river, or scape the bottom of a rock to find how this element changed the land in some way. A geomorphologist has to write reports on the findings which include their calculations of the data collected. Mapping out the area before and after a study is another necessity of the job. While in the field, a geomorphologist uses computer models to determine if the area he is studying had any drastic changes.

Education of Geomorphologist

Anyone interested in becoming a geomorphologist can get a degree in geography or geology. Geography main area of study is the earth's surface and life on earth. It focuses more the physical area where people live. Geology is the study of the materials on earth and the structure of them. Depending on which college or university a person might attend, he might be able take one or two courses in geomorphology.

Other Areas of Geomorphology

The one good thing about geomorphology is that there is more than one area people can become experts in. A person might like the desert more than land so they will study aeolian geomorphology. She might like learning more about Mars or Venus surfaces so they would focus on planetary geomorphology. Fluvial geomorphology is the study of stream and river systems. Those who prefer dry land and how it formed might like tectonic geomorphology, but if they prefer fire then they might want to look at volcanoes in volcanic geomorphology. For those who prefer ice to fire, then glacial and periglacial geomorphology is the way to go.

People Who Are Geomorphologists

Rob Cell is a well known geomorphologist from New Zealand. He is a coastal geomorphologist who has published books on the subject. He is now an enviromental and communications consultant about getting people to use sustainable materials to save the earth. Andrew S. Goudie is a aeolian geomorphologist who is a professor at the Univeristy of Oxford in England.

Where to Find Jobs in Geomorphologist

A geomorphologist can work for private and public companies. Some geomorphologists teach high school geology or geography or are professors at colleges and universities. Geomorphologists who work out the field on their own will search for grants to fund their field work. Companies like to hire geomorphologists who have done field work and have five to seven years work experience.

Salary of Geomorphologists

Since geomorphologist jobs fall under the categories of geology or geography, it's not easy to find out the median salary for one. The average yearly salary before taxes for someone working geography or geology is £51,350 to £130,000. Salaries for people working in the private or public sector can vary in range. Think Energy Group in Seattle, Washington is looking to a fluvial geomorphologist and their salary range is £52,000 to £91,000.

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About the Author

Dawn Askew started writing in 1999, composing articles covering topics in career development and advancement for various Web sites. Askew holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.