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Paleontology Professor

Teach university students about paleontology.

What does a Paleontology Professor do?

A Paleontology Professor covers more topics than just dinosaur bones; Paleontology Professors actually teach students everything about evolution and prehistoric life. While dinosaurs are a large part of your job as a Paleontology Professor, you also study the fossils of plants and invertebrates. But perhaps the most important part of your classroom work is educating students about the animals that once roamed the earth, their natural environments, evolution, and extinction. After all, history and evolution are at the core of your teaching, and you instruct students on the origin of history itself.

You spend part of your time in the classroom and the rest out in the field or in a lab, teaching students how to properly dig for fossils and record their findings. Fieldwork is an important part of the path to becoming a Paleontologist, so teaching students how to participate in a dig takes up a large portion of your work at the master’s level of teaching. You instruct students on how to use excavation tools, collect samples, clean fossils, and pack them for shipment.

In a laboratory setting, you teach them how to use microscopes to carefully analyze their findings, finish the cleaning, date the remains, and assemble them together. You can also do DNA research on the fossils. Your students aren’t the only ones who can have fun with fieldwork, though. During the summer, you may want to pad your income with work on paleontology digs.