Geological Engineers

(NOC 2144)

in All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology

Geological engineers carry out geological and geotechnical studies to assess suitability of locations for civil engineering, mining and oil and gas projects. They plan, design, develop and supervise programs of geological data collection and analysis and prepare geological engineering reports and recommendations. Geological engineers work for consulting engineering companies, electrical utilities, mining and petroleum companies, and in government and research and educational institutions.

Job Outlook

Undetermined

Read more

  • Estimate change in employment not available for this occupation.
  • Estimate openings due to growth and retirements not available for this occupation.
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for this occupation.

Compared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology

  • Estimate 705 employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 2585 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

This is not a large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities may not be that frequent. With a small percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are not expected to be a major contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Geological Engineers most commonly work full-time hours.

The median employment income for 86% of Geological Engineers who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $96,662. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

N/A

Minimum

N/A

Median

N/A

Maximum

Annual Pay

N/A

Minimum

$96,662

Median

N/A

Maximum

Compared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology

Hourly Pay

$18.00

Minimum

$37.80

Median

$48.46

Maximum

Annual Pay

$13,568

Minimum

$60,422

Median

$107,009

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Geological engineers carry out geological and geotechnical studies to assess suitability of locations for civil engineering, mining and oil and gas projects. They plan, design, develop and supervise programs of geological data collection and analysis and prepare geological engineering reports and recommendations. Geological engineers work for consulting engineering companies, electrical utilities, mining and petroleum companies, and in government and research and educational institutions.

Job duties

Geological engineers:

  • Plan, develop and coordinate programs of geotechnical, geological, geophysical or geohydrological data collection, analysis and mapping to help in the development of civil engineering, mining, petroleum and waste management projects or for regional development.
  • Analyze and prepare recommendations and reports for construction or improvements to foundations of civil engineering projects like rock excavation, pressure grouting and hydraulic channel erosion control.
  • Analyze and prepare recommendations and reports on settlement of buildings, stability of slopes and fills, and probable effects of landslides and earthquakes to support construction and civil engineering projects.
  • Study groundwater flow and contamination and develop prescriptions for site selection, treatment, and construction.
  • Plan, develop, coordinate, and carry out studies in mining exploration, mine evaluation and feasibility studies relative to the mining industry.
  • Survey and study ore deposits, ore reserve calculations and mine design.
  • Design, develop, and implement computer applications for geophysics, geochemistry, and geology mapping, and related fields.
  • Supervise technologists, technicians and other engineers and scientists.

Sample job titles

  • geological engineer
  • geophysical engineer
  • geotechnical engineer
  • hydrogeological engineer
  • hydrogeology engineer

Skills

You need persistence and good judgement. The ability to think analytically and logically is important. You must be able to communicate and cooperate with others, as engineers often work in teams. Leadership and problem-solving skills are also necessary. Computer experience is an important asset.

Job requirements

  • A bachelor's degree in geological engineering or in a related discipline.
  • A master's degree or doctorate in a related engineering discipline may be required.
  • Licensing by a provincial association of professional engineers is required to approve engineering drawings and reports and to practice as a Professional Engineer (P.Eng.).
  • Engineers are eligible for registration following graduation from an accredited educational program, three or four years of supervised work experience in engineering and passing a professional practice examination.

Other considerations

Geological engineers work closely with geologists and other scientists and engineers, and mobility is possible between some fields of specialization. Supervisory and senior positions in this group require experience. Engineers often work in a multidisciplinary environment and gain knowledge and skills through work experience that may allow them to practice in associated areas of science, engineering, sales, marketing, or management.

By the numbers

Quick look

< 50

employed in 2016

85.7%

employed full-time

0.0%

self employed

28.6%
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71.4%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
45.3

median age

Compared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology

25,875

employed in 2016

91.5%

employed full-time

7.6%

self employed

20.0%
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80%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
42.8

median age

Where will I likely work?

100.0%

Halifax

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

North Shore

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

55.6%

Professional, scientific and technical services

22.2%

Public administration

22.2%

Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction

What is the age of Employment?

60.0%

25-34

40.0%

45-54

Compared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology

24.2%

25-34

23.5%

45-54

23.4%

35-44

16.4%

55-64

7.7%

15-24

Top levels of education

57.1%

Bachelor

N/A
28.6%

Master

N/A

Compared to: All Engineering, Math, Science, and Information Technology

33.1%

College Diploma

$59,986 median annual income
29.8%

Bachelor

$63,965 median annual income
11.9%

High school

$45,835 median annual income
9.9%

Master

$65,105 median annual income
6.9%

Apprenticeship

$57,773 median annual income

Education & training

Engineering - General

University Program

These programs prepare individuals to apply mathematical and scientific principles to solve a wide variety of practical problems in industry, social organization, public works, and commerce.

Institutions providing this program

Acadia University

Wolfville, NS

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

St. Francis Xavier University

Antigonish, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Cape Breton University

Sydney, NS

Dalhousie University Faculty of Agriculture

Truro, NS

Mathematics

College or University Program

These programs focus on the analysis of quantities, magnitudes, forms, and their relationships, using symbolic logic and language. They include courses in algebra, calculus, functional analysis, geometry, number theory, logic, topology and other mathematical specializations.

Institutions providing this program

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

University of King's College

Halifax, NS

Mount Saint Vincent University

Halifax, NS

St. Francis Xavier University

Antigonish, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Cape Breton University

Sydney, NS

Physical Sciences

College or University Program

These programs focus on the major topics, concepts, processes, and interrelationships of physical phenomena as studied in any combination of physical science disciplines.

Institutions providing this program

Dalhousie University

Halifax, NS

Saint Mary's University

Halifax, NS

Surveying Engineering

University Program

These programs prepare students to apply scientific and mathematical principles to the determination of the location, elevations, and alignment of natural and man-made topographic features. They include courses in property line location, surveying, surface measurement, aerial and terrestrial photogrammetry, remote sensing, satellite imagery, global positioning systems, computer applications, and photographic data processing.

Institutions providing this program

Acadia University

Wolfville, NS

Employment requirements & contacts

Regulations

Professional Engineer

Right to Title and Practice: This job is regulated. The job title is protected, and you may not use it without a professional licence. A licence shows that the holder has met provincial requirements and is required to legally do this work.

Regulating body:
Engineers Nova Scotia
1355 Barrington Street
Halifax, NS B3J 1Y9
(888) 802-7367
(902) 423-9769

Contacts

Consulting Engineers of Nova Scotia
Dartmouth, NS
Association of Consulting Engineering Companies Canada
Ottawa, ON

Additional resources