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Bachelor of Science in Geobiology California Institute of Technology




Course info


The GPS undergraduate program is designed to provide its students with a thorough training in the geological and planetary sciences and, whenever possible, to integrate these studies with the core curriculum courses in mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology that all students take during their first years at Caltech.

Active involvement in research, particularly during the summer, is encouraged for all of GPS's undergraduate students. For geologists, that research will include an emphasis on fieldwork, which the division believes provides the kind of firsthand experience with geological phenomena that cannot be fully gained in a classroom or laboratory.

Learning Outcomes in the GPS Division

The expectation for undergraduate students in the earth and planetary sciences in the GPS Division is that they will:

  1. have a basic understanding of the relevant scientific principles and observations,
  2. have the basic skills in geology, physics, chemistry, or biology to address problems in this science,
  3. be able to communicate this scientific knowledge to scientists and the public, and
  4. have had experience in doing research.

Program Requirements

Under the geobiology option a student can be associated with either biology or GPS. This association formally will only affect which course the students elect to satisfy the Institute-wide oral presentation requirement; all other geobiology option requirements are independent of GPS or biology affiliation. In practice, however, we expect a student's affiliation with one division or another will significantly shape their choice of elective courses.

  • Ge 11 abc, Ge/Ay 11 c, Ge 109, and a science writing course.1
  • Ma 2 and one choice from: Ma 3, Bi/CNS/NB 195, Ge/ESE 118 or Ge/Ay 117.
  • Ph 2 a or Ph 12 a plus an additional quarter of sophomore-level physics (Ph 2 b, 2 c, 12 b, or 12 c).
  • Ch 41 abc and Bi/Ch 110.
  • Bi 8-10, 117, 122.
  • Two of ESE/Bi 166, ESE/Bi 168, or Ge/ESE 170.
  • Ge 112.
  • 9 units of geobiology electives from the following list: Bi 123, Bi 180, Ch 4 a, Ch 15, Ge 120 ab, Ch 7, Ch 8, Ge/ESE 143, or Ge 124 ab.
  • 27 units of geobiology electives in geology, biology, chemistry, and/or environmental engineering to be chosen in consultation with adviser, most likely from the list on 8 (above) or from the following list: Ge 11 d, 40, 41 abc, 106, 114, 115 ab, 116, 120 ab, 121 ab, 124 ab, 140 ab, Ge/ESE 149, Ge/Bi 244, 246, BMB/Bi/Ch 170, Bi 22, 24, 90 abc, Bi/Ge 105, Bi/Ch 111,113, Bi 115, 123, Bi/CNS 150, Bi 152, Bi/CNS 158, Bi 180,182,188,190,204, Bi/CNS 216, ESE/Bi 168, ESE/Ch 175,176, ESE 101-103, ESE/Ge/Ch 171,172, Ch 4 ab, 5 ab, 7, 14, 15,21 abc, 24, 25, 102, 112, 145, 146, 154 ab, 212.

Course options

Here are the different ways in which you can study Bachelor of Science in Geobiology.

Full Time (4 years)

Tuition fees

$52,506.00 (37,54,967) per year


01-Oct-19, 06-Jan-20, 30-Mar-20, 29-Sep-20


Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences

1200 East California Boulevard,



91125, United States

Entry requirement for international students

International citizens must have completed Caltech's required academic preparation during their secondary school career.

Academic Preparation Requirements

4 years of math (including calculus)
1 year of physics
1 year of chemistry
3 years of English (4 years recommended)
1 year of U.S. history/government (waived for students in schools outside the U.S.)

Additional requirements of our international citizen applicants: TOEFL scores: Required of all international citizens unless 1) your native language is English or 2) you have studied for two or more years in a school where English is the language of instruction.

California Institute of Technology*

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* Please check with your chosen school for the exact entry requirements for your programme.

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