Student filling tanks

The Master of Science Degrees are designed to give students a solid background in geology, skills that can be applied in geology-related industry or teaching, experience in research, and in most cases, experience in teaching. 

The standard masters degree requires completion of a thesis and is designed for students who will pursue geological careers in research or industry, or who plan to continue graduate study toward a PhD. Most oil companies, for example, prefer to hire students who have completed a thesis, because of the valuable experience that students gain by doing thesis research. This option is designed to be completed in about two years, though students who enter the program with a sparse background in geology may need additional time.


Milestones for Standard Master of Science option

Milestone Normal Progress Limit
Select research advisor End of 1st semester End of 2nd semester
Complete background coursework End of 3rd semester End of 4th semester
Thesis Colloquium 4th semester 6th semester
Thesis Completion 4th semester 6th semester

Most full semester courses count as 4 hours for grad students. 4 hours of credit is roughly equivalent to 10 hours of work per week.

Another, less common, option is our Applied Geology Masters degree, which does not require a thesis.