Academic expertise. Research prowess. Student success.

There’s a whole world of discovery in the ground beneath your feet. From the shifting of tectonic plates to the eruption of volcanoes, learn about the Earth and all of the natural processes that have shaped it over time.

Department faculty, researchers, graduate students, and undergraduate students pursue field, laboratory, experimental, and modeling studies of geological and environmental problems around the world. The department's excellent facilities and technical personnel support a range of methods and the department's ideal location also provides ready access to the many natural laboratories of Nevada, California and the western United States. Research specialties include Earth and planetary surface processes, geodynamics, volcanology, geochemistry, petrology, earthquakes and seismology, mineral and energy resources, hydrology and hydrogeology.

Recent news from the Department

Three women work at a booth surrounded by maps, documents and booklets. They are tabling for the Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology.

Mackay shines at AEMA 2023

Mackay School faculty and students made an impact at annual conference

Andrew Zuza smiles, wearing a medal and standing next to another man who is smiling on a stage.

NBMG geoscientist wins Young Scientist Award from GSA

The Donath Medal is awarded to a young scientist for outstanding research

A two panel image shows a rock from two different angles. The rock looks very precarious on the edge of a cliff.

Perfectly precarious positions

Rocks that naturally lay in precarious positions remained upright during an earthquake, surprising seismologists