Greetings from the Chair
Welcome to the Department of Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences (EPSS) at UCLA!
We study real-world problems on Earth and other planets through applied physics, chemistry, or biology. Our mission is to understand and protect our home in the universe through discovery, education, and outreach.
A little (but mighty!) department in a large school, EPSS offers the sense of close-knit community characteristic to smaller schools, whilst also providing access to the vast web of connections, resources, and opportunities derived from being part of the massive UCLA institution.
Students enjoy small class sizes, and learn about their chosen topics within Geology, Geochemistry, Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Space Physics, Earth and Environmental Science, and Planetary Science from world-renowned faculty at the forefront of their field. There is also ample opportunity to work closely with faculty in both a classroom and research capacity: we have a 3:1 student-to-faculty ratio, and over half of EPSS undergraduates are involved with research by their second year.
With an EPSS degree, students gain the skills necessary to succeed in a wide array of professional careers and advanced technical fields, as well as an unrivaled college experience with wonderful adventures, memories, and friendships to last a lifetime.
After EPSS, alumni careers include paths in NASA and JPL (including NASA space mission leaders, several astronauts, and JPL Director!), USGS, NOAA, the Department of Energy, national parks, museum work, academia, data science, engineering, business, law, and more.
If you appreciate active learning, field trips and exploration, out-of-this-world-class laboratories and technology, and a family atmosphere, consider EPSS; we look forward to meeting you!
Explore our degree programs:
Greetings from the Chair, Carolina Lithgow-Bertelloni:
Welcome to the Department of Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences at UCLA. Our mission is to understand and protect our home in the universe through discovery, education, outreach. To further this mission we strive to foster an inclusive culture of respect, collaboration, openness to new ideas and methodologies.
We study how Earth and other planets form and evolve, how life developed here, and whether life has existed elsewhere. We investigate the physical and chemical conditions that prevailed 4.6 billion years ago when the planets formed, the processes that shape planetary bodies, and interactions with the space environment. We generate and analyze data from lab experiments, field studies, spacecraft, and telescopes, addressing important questions about the Earth, the Solar System, and beyond. We also characterize natural hazards so that we can better protect humanity from earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, space weather, asteroid impacts, and climate change. Please explore our web site to learn more about the research conducted by our students, researchers, and faculty.
As a land grant institution, the Department of Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences at UCLA acknowledges the Gabrielino/Tongva peoples as the traditional land caretakers of Tovaangar (Los Angeles basin, So. Channel Islands). We pay our respects to the Honuukvetam (Ancestors), ‘Ahiihirom (Elders) and ‘Eyoohiinkem (our relatives/relations) past, present and emerging.
You can also read about our activities in our newsletters.