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  Nov 23, 2017
 
 
    
2016-2017 Graduate Catalog [Not Current Academic Year. Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

Geology, MS


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College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics  >Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences  >Geology, MS

Introduction

Earth & Atmospheric Sciences applicants to the Masters of Science Program must have earned a Bachelor’s Degree or its equivalent. Applicants to graduate school will be evaluated based upon their Grade Point Average (GPA), Graduate Record Exams (GRE) scores, and letters of recommendation. A GPA of 3.0 or better in the last 60 hours and commensurate scores on the verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing sections of the GRE are generally considered acceptable for admission. Individuals with a lower GPA but elevated GRE’s may also be admitted.  Letters of recommendation are also given considerable weight in the evaluation process.  All non-native English-speaking students must take the TOEFL examination and receive a score of 550 or better for the paper exam, 213 or better for the computer exam, and 79 or better for the internet-based exam.  In addition to these requirements, graduate admission may also be contingent upon a faculty advisor agreeing to supervise the applicant’s research. Therefore, prospective students are strongly encouraged to contact faculty members in the applicant’s field of interest prior to the application deadline.

Background Requirements

Candidates for an MS degree in Geology are required to have successfully completed course work equivalent to the University of Houston’s undergraduate BS in Geology program.  These courses include:

  • Physical Geology
  • Mineralogy
  • Paleobiology
  • Petrography
  • Geologic Field Methods
  • Stratigraphy
  • Igneous/Metamorphic Petrogenesis
  • Structural Geology
  • Sedimentary Petrogenesis
  • Introduction to Geophysics
  • Field Camp

Allied courses include:

  • 3 semesters of Calculus
  • 2 semesters of Calculus-based Physics
  • 2 semesters of Chemistry.

Substitution of courses equivalent to those listed above as well as waivers of requirements will be considered on an individual basis.  Applicants with a few deficiencies can satisfy those requirements while also taking graduate courses at the University of Houston.  It is normally recommended that a student with 6 or more deficiency courses - e.g., those whose undergraduate degree was in another discipline - work toward a second undergraduate degree in Geology prior to graduate work.

Program Information and Degree Requirements

A The Master of Science (MS) degree will be awarded after students have successfully completed requirements specified in one of the two following plans. All students are responsible for familiarizing themselves with all rules, regulations, etc., of the University, College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and Department of Geosciences and for meeting all requirements.  Applicants are encouraged to review the detailed requirements for the MS degree.

Degree Requirements


The Master of Science (M.S.) degree will be awarded after students have successfully completed requirements specified in one of the two following plans:

Plan I: Thesis Option


Students may satisfy degree requirements by completing a minimum of 30 approved semester hours,satisfactorily completing the formal graduate level course requirements including seminars and colloquia; enrollment in at least three semester hours of thesis courses;  and completing and defense of a thesis acceptable to the Department.   All MS Plan I students must be continuously enrolled full time until the degree requirements are completed.

Students who complete a thesis as part of their degree requirements must specify a thesis committee and have the names on file in the Office of the Dean at least one semester before their graduation.  The committee must consist of a minimum of three faculty members from the Department and one approved member external to the Department from industry and/or academia who is acceptable to the Department and the College.  Research faculty or instructional faculty may serve on thesis committees, but they may not chair the committees. A research professor may serve as a thesis co-advisor with a tenured/tenure-track faculty member.

Plan II: Non-thesis Option


Students may satisfy the MS Plan II degree requirements by satisfactorily completing a minimum of 36 approved semester hours of formal courses in Geology and related disciplines, no more than nine of which, with explicit Departmental approval, may be at the advanced undergraduate level.

Part-Time M.S. Students: Non-Thesis Option


All part-time (6 hours per semester or less) M.S. students admitted into the graduate program in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences (EAS) will be admitted as non-thesis option starting Fall 2011.  Present students are grandfathered in the old system.

Non-thesis M.S. students must complete 39 credit hours for the degree.  All courses, except the research capstone, must be formal courses (for example, research hours do not count toward this degree) in the geosciences program.

All students are responsible for familiarizing themselves with all of the rules, regulations, etc. of the University, College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences (EAS) and for meeting all requirements. Additionally, all international students must familiarize themselves with all regulations, etc. relevant to their status (e.g., International Student Services).  Students are reminded that the University requires them to complete their degree requirements within five (5) consecutive years after their initial enrollment in graduate course work at the University of Houston.  Additionally, graduate credit is not given for any University of Houston course work completed prior to admission into the graduate program, e.g., courses taken as a post-baccalaureate student (PB) and non-degree option do not count.

Non-thesis M.S. students must complete 39 credit hours for the degree.  All courses, except the research capstone, must be formal courses (for example, research hours do not count toward this degree) in the geosciences program.  Twenty-one (21) hours must consist of 6000-level EAS courses, and the remaining 9 hours can be selected 4000-level (or above) courses or approved 3000-level (or above) course work in other departments.  No more than six (6) undergraduate hours may be in EAS.  A maximum of 6 semester hours of graduate level course work can be transferred from other institutions, provided they were taken as part of a graduate degree program, that the grades are B or higher, and that the courses were taken within the last 5 years.  In order to insure breadth, each student is required to take at least one course from 3 of the 4 Graduate Core Course Work Categories.  These categories are:

  1. Geochemistry/Petrology,
  2. Sedimentary Geology,
  3. Stucture/Tectonics, and
  4. Applied/Analytical (a list of courses in each category is on the web site).

An average of B must be maintained in courses taken for graduate credit. A grade of C+ or lower in four courses (12 hours) renders the student ineligible for any advanced degree at the University of Houston.

After completion of 18 hours, students with a GPA of 3.4 and above and demonstrated abilities to conduct research may petition to switch to a thesis-based degree.  In order to do this, the student must have an advisor and committee members willing to supervise them.  The thesis research advisor, Geology Graduate Advisor, and Department Chair must sign a petition indicating approval of the change to a thesis-based M.S. degree option and it must be filed with the Academic Advisor.  The student must successfully defend their thesis proposal (as outlined in the requirements for the thesis-based degree option) after they have completed their core course requirements and prior to completion of 27 hours of course credit.

Questions pertaining to specific requirements should be addressed to the Geology Graduate Advisor:

 

Dr. Shuhab Khan

sdkhan@uh.edu

or

Academic Advisor II:

Ms. Karen Maldonado

Kaluna@uh.edu

713-743-3401

 

 

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