About the Survey

Hickory Run Boulder Field

What's New

This section features new information and publications on the bureau's website.



Our mission — “To serve the citizens of Pennsylvania by collecting, preserving, and disseminating impartial information on the Commonwealth's geology, geologic resources, and topography in order to contribute to the understanding, wise use, and conservation of its land and included resources.”

The Pennsylvania Geological Survey has been examining Pennsylvania’s geology since 1836, and always with an eye toward meeting the ever-changing needs of the times. Pennsylvania has evolved from a state primarily focused on coal and petroleum resources to one where these still-important commodities compete for attention with other concerns, including finding adequate supplies of water, locating resources for construction and pollution remediation, dealing with geologic hazards such as landslides and sinkholes, and even supporting tourism, which has become an important statewide industry. Providing information that planners can use in making wise decisions on future land use has become an important activity in the 21st century. Our fact sheet "Local Government Services" summarizes the services we can provide to communities and citizens of our state.

The Survey’s present organization dates to 1919, when it was authorized by the General Assembly “to undertake, conduct, and maintain the organization of a thorough and extended survey of the State, for the purpose of elucidating the geology and topography of the State.” It was also given the responsibility to “put the results of the survey, with the results of previous surveys, into form convenient for reference.” Toward that end, the Survey has published hundreds of books, maps, magazines, and pamphlets. New publications continue to be developed every year. More recently, embracing the internet and digital technologies provides yet another medium through which we can put our results "into a form convenient for reference."

The Bureau of Topographic and Geologic Survey, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) fills a variety of positions using lists of eligible candidates provided by the State Civil Service Commission. These positions require the applicant complete a Civil Service application and submit it according to the instructions provided in the application and test announcement. Information on the State Civil Service Commission including current information on exam schedules and application procedures can be found at http://www.scsc.state.pa.us. Applications, Test Announcements, and Supplements for Geologic Scientists and Senior Geologic Scientists can be found at the Civil Service Announcement web page . We encourage interested and qualified individuals to be on record with the Civil Service Commission well before known opportunities exist.

For more information on job opportunities and internships, please contact the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Bureau of Human Resources, 7th floor, Rachel Carson State Office Building, P. O. Box 8768, Harrisburg, PA 17105–8768: telephone 717–787–8737 or via the internet: http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/humanresources/

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is an equal opportunity employer.