University of Vermont

2011-12 Online Catalogue

Geology (Master of Science)


The Master of Science in Geology is a rigorous research thesis program with grounding in related coursework. Research programs include environmental geology, geomorphology, water resources, microbial geochemistry, mineralogy, sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic environments, geochronology, and structural evolution of orogenic belts. Examples of specific faculty interests include geologic history and recent sedimentation in the Lake Champlain Basin, processes and chronology of glaciation, stable and cosmogenic isotopic studies, water quality and pollutant transport, crystal chemistry and crystallography, microbial ecology and geochemical cycling, tectonic evolution of deformed continental margins and interiors, petrofabric and structural analysis of deformed rocks, partial melting processes, mineral structure analysis, stratigraphy and sedimentary environments of lower Paleozoic sandstones and carbonates.

General Requirements

Specific Requirements

Requirements for Admission to Graduate Studies for the Degree of Master of Science
  1. Bachelor's degree in Geology or related field from an accredited institution with year-long courses in chemistry, physics, biology, and mathematics preferred. The M.S. program is also open to undergraduate majors in physics, chemistry, biology, engineering or mathematics who have accumulated twelve semester hours of coursework in geology. Required remedial course-work in geology, if any, will be established by the student and the faculty during the admission process and during advising at the beginning of the first semester.
  2. Strong undergraduate record, letters of recommendation, and satisfactory basic GRE scores.
  3. Applicants should identify a potential faculty advisor (or advisors) and include research interests in the application statement.
  4. Application to the program is a competitive process and admission is dependent upon available Teaching and/or Research Fellowships.
Requirements for Advancement to Candidacy for the Degree of Master of Science

Advancement to candidacy requires satisfactory completion of a comprehensive examination. The comprehensive examination includes both a written and oral 1) research thesis proposal and 2) progress report during the second and third semesters of enrollment, respectively.

Minimum Degree Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science

Successful writing, oral presentation and defense of a research thesis are required. Satisfactory completion will be determined by the candidate’s thesis committee. Advanced courses in geology must total at least thirty semester hours, including at least one 300-level course and six to nine credits for thesis research. A minimum of fifteen graded credits used in compilation of the graduate GPA must be taken in residence at UVM. Advanced courses in related sciences are encouraged and may be substituted for some selected geology courses on approval by the departmental advisor. With the prior approval of their department and the Graduate College, students may apply one 100/200 level, three-credit undergraduate course towards their graduate program. A student's advisor must petition the Graduate College for approval before the student enrolls in the course. Consult individual programs for further limitations. Under no circumstances will a course numbered below 100 be applicable to a master's program.



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