PCC's Geology courses are the starting point for a career in education, geoscience research, and government, where scientific and technical skills are in high demand.

Our Geology courses cover a broad spectrum, from basic physical and historical geology to classes that focus on study of geologically significant areas throughout the western United States. Take Geology courses to fulfill a general education requirement, or earn an AS-T Degree in Geology and be prepared to transfer and pursue a four-year degree in Geology.

What Can You Do With A Degree in Geology?
Studying Geology can lead to a career as a:
  • Geologist
  • Geochemist
  • Geophysicist
  • Hydrologist
  • Meteorologist
  • Paleontologist
  • Seismologist
  • Sonographer

The Geology Department (part of the Natural Sciences Division) was founded in 1927 by Edwin Van Amringe and has a long history of excellence. PCC's geology courses cover a broad spectrum, from basic physical and historical geology to classes that focus on the study of geologically significant areas throughout the western United States.

The 2-year program boasts four full-time faculty members and provides ample opportunity for field studies. The Geology Faculty are well-qualified professionals who are personally interested in the success of their students. All classes are taught by faculty, not student assistants. The program has modern equipment and facilities that are easily accessible to students.

  • GEOL 001 PHYSICAL GEOLOGY
  • GEOL 001F PHYSICAL GEOLOGY FIELD STUDIES
  • GEOL 002 HISTORICAL GEOLOGY
  • GEOL 002F HISTORICAL GEOLOGY FIELD STUDIES
  • GEOL 003 EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE
  • GEOL 003F EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE FIELD LABORATORY
  • GEOL 004 GEOLOGY OF CALIFORNIA
  • GEOL 005 GEOLOGIC MAPS
  • GEOL 006 MINERALOGY
  • GEOL 008 PETROLOGY
  • GEOL 012 PHYSICAL OCEANOGRAPHY
  • GEOL 012F PHYSICAL OCEANOGRAPHY FIELD STUDIES GEOL
  • 012L PHYSICAL OCEANOGRAPHY LABORATORY
  • GEOL 016 INTRODUCTION TO PLANETARY SCIENCE
  • GEOL 020 INDEPENDENT STUDY
  • GEOL 021 HISTORY OF LIFE
  • GEOL 021L HISTORY OF LIFE LABORATORY
  • GEOL 022 THE AGE OF DINOSAURS
  • GEOL 023 NATURAL DISASTERS
  • GEOL 024 SCIENCE OF ATMOSPHERE
  • GEOL 030A-M GEOLOGICAL FIELD INVESTIGATION
  • GEOL 040 GEOLOGICAL FIELD LABORATORY

Use the links below to see full course descriptions as well as the current semester's offerings.


Transfer Options

All Geology classes at PCC carry transfer credit towards bachelors' degrees in areas such as Geology, Geophysics, Engineering Geology, Paleobiology, and Space Physics.

Many courses also fulfill general education requirements. For more information, please visit the Transfer Center's "What Courses Will Transfer" resource page

Geology | Associate of Science for Transfer (AS-T) Degree

Earn a degree AND prepare to transfer. By completing the AS-T in Geology, you will finish the general education requirements as well as the lower division major requirements for a BS degree in Geology prior to transferring to a CSU.

View Degree Requirements

Field trip courses are an integral part of the PCC geology program. The following is a sampling of field trip destinations and topics emphasized for the last few years:

  • Northern Colorado Plateau (Mesozoic-Cenozoic stratigraphy)
  • Central Rockies (Utah, Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho)
  • Santa Cruz Island (evolution of California coastal geology)
  • Owens Valley (volcanic and glacial geomorphology)
  • Klamath Mountains (plate boundary study)
  • Northern Transverse Ranges (from subduction to transform boundary)
  • Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne River by backpack (Sierra Nevada Batholith)
  • Rainbow Basin (introduction to mapping)
  • White-Inyo Mountains (introduction to mapping)
  • Southern Orange County and San Diego (coastal oceanography)
  • San Andreas Fault from Palmdale to Wrightwood (overview of fault history)
  • Palos Verdes Peninsula (Cenozoic evolution and beach processes)
  • San Gabriel Mountains (an overview of the history of the range)
  • Geology of the Pasadena area (geologic features in an urban setting)
  • Death Valley (basin and range structure and stratigraphy)
  • Costa Rica (volcanoes, rainforests and active plate margins)
  • Baja California (biology and geology)
  • Project Pele (study of geology and ecology of Hawaiian Islands)
  • Mojave Desert (stratigraphy and volcanic features of the region)
  • Mt. Wilson Observatory (stargazing overnight)
  • Carrizo Plain (study of the San Andreas and related geomorphology)

The Dana Club


Established in 1937, the Dana Club is the oldest club on the Pasadena City College campus. This student organization sponsors guest lectures, arranges informal field trips, and engages in several fund-raising activities to support Geology scholarships and special projects. The club accepts donations of rock and mineral specimens to prepare as study material or sell at the PCC flea market. In conjunction with the biology club, the Dana Club established and maintains a rock and cactus garden on the college campus.

Traditionally the Dana Club has sponsored many field trips to areas of geological interest in the western U.S. Recent trips have included the Nopah Range of eastern California, Santa Cruz Island, the Long Valley Caldera, and Catalina Island.

The Dana Club also has a long-standing tradition of assisting the Mineralogical Society of Southern California in hosting an annual gem and mineral show. Now known as the California Show, it is held each year at the Pomona Fairplex in November.

For more information and/or to join the Dana Club, please contact our faculty adviser Dr. Ling O'Connor at (626) 585-7156 or yloconnor@pasadena.edu.