Paleontologists are geoscientists who study the fossils of ancient life-forms, including human life, found in sedimentary rocks on or within the earth's crust. Paleontological analyses range from the description of large, easily visible features to biochemical analysis of incompletely fossilized tissue. The observations are used to infer relationships between past and present groups of organisms(taxonomy), to investigate the origins of life, and to investigate the ecology of the past (paleoecology) from which implications for the sustainability of life under present ecological conditions can be drawn. Paleontology is usually considered a subspecialty of the larger field of geology.

Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) None
Salary Range $50,000 to $100,000+
Work Environment Indoors/Outdoors
Education and Training
  • Doctorate
Related School Subjects
  • Biology
  • Earth Science
  • Mathematics
  • Organizational
  • Research
  • Scientific
Personality Traits
  • Curious
  • Problem-Solving
  • Scientific
Licensure/Certification Required

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