Volcanology Professor

Teach university students about volcanoes.
picture of Volcanology Professor

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$44,000 – $149,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Volcanology Professors do?

A Volcanology Professor is a master of volcanology — sometimes spelled “vulcanology” — which is the scientific study of volcanoes. In ancient Greece and Rome, it was believed that volcanoes were the work of the gods. Ancient Greeks, for instance, believed that Athena, the goddess of war, buried the hero Enceladus beneath the Sicilian volcano Mt. Etna as punishment for disobeying her. The mountain’s rumblings, legend goes, were Enceladus’ cries, its flames his breath, and its tremors his futile attempts at escape.

Today, of course, Scientists know that volcanoes aren’t the result of heavenly rage against humanity, but rather natural geological movements beneath the earth’s surface. That’s what you teach your students when you’re a Volcanology Professor. Part Geologist, part Science Professor, you spend your days as a Volcanology Professor studying and teaching the rhymes and reasons behind volcano formation and eruption.

Employed by a college or university, you’re oftentimes a working Volcanologist, which means you divide your time between classroom instruction and field research. When you’re in the classroom, your duties are identical to those of any Professor: advising students, developing lesson plans, giving lectures, assigning reading and homework, and giving and grading exams. When you’re in the field, though, you’re more like a Scientist than a Teacher, as it’s your job to make hypotheses about volcanoes, then visit and observe them in person in order to collect data and either prove or disprove your theory.

When you’re not teaching or researching, you’re most likely writing articles in scientific journals and presenting at scientific conferences. Always, however, your mind is flooded with thoughts of magma, ashes, craters, lava flows, and vents!

Should I be a Volcanology Professor?

You should have a doctoral degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.

  • Also known as: Oceanology Teacher, Volcanology Teacher

    How to become a Volcanology Professor

    Most Volcanology Professors have a Doctorate. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaaaj9&chl=||||master%27s+%2813%25%29|doctorate+%2887%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,87
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