Scientists Say: Speleology

This is the study of places dark and deep

The study of caves is called speleology. A scientist who studies them is a speleologist.

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Speleology (noun, “spee-lee-AWL-oh-gee”)

This is the scientific study of caves. The word speleology comes from the Latin word “speleum” and the Greek word “spelaion,” both of which mean “cave.” The ending, “ology,” means “the study of.”

Someone who studies caves is called a speleologist (spee-lee-AWL-oh-gist). A speleologist might study the rock that caves are made of or how caves form and why. They can also study the organisms that live in those caves. Some even study caves to find out more about the history of the Earth.

In a sentence

Some scientists in the field of speleology study organisms in caves, which might give clues about how life could survive on Mars. 

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Bethany is the staff writer at Science News for Students. She has a Ph.D. in physiology and pharmacology from Wake Forest University School of Medicine.

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