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:
- Sedimentary Geology,
- Stucture/Tectonics, and
- 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
Academic Advisor II:
Ms. Karen Maldonado