Departments & Centers

Department of Earth Sciences

Graduate Programs

Master of Science

The Department of Earth Sciences graduate program leads to a Master of Science degree from Indiana University. The program is administered by a departmental graduate advisory committee, composed of the graduate advisor and two or more members of the graduate faculty.

Admission Requirements

Prospective students should have a bachelor’s degree in geology, including a summer field course, and a minimum of a B (3.0) average in geology courses. One year of chemistry and mathematics through college algebra and trigonometry are required. Individuals with a bachelor’s degree in another area of science are also encouraged to apply; the departmental graduate advisory committee will prescribe a plan of study to remove deficiencies. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test is required; the Subject Test in Geology is optional. Each student must submit three letters of recommendation.

Financial Aid

Admitted students may be appointed as research assistants or as teaching assistants in introductory geology courses. Several such assistantships are available each year. Assistantships include remission of tuition and fees.

Degree Requirements

Both thesis and non-thesis options are available. Both options require at least 18 credit hours of non-research course work in geology and at least 3 credit hours in courses approved for graduate credit from allied sciences, mathematics, or the environmental program of the School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA). Up to 6 credit hours of 400-level courses approved for graduate credit may be counted toward the degree with the approval of the graduate advisor. The thesis option requires the completion of 30 credit hours, 6 of which are taken as GEOL-G810 Research (the thesis). The non-thesis option requires the completion of 36 credit hours, 3 of which consist of a research project taken as GEOL-G700 Geologic Problems. The departmental graduate committee must approve elective credits outside of the Department of Earth Sciences for both options.

Admitted students will be assigned a three-person advisory committee at the beginning of the first year of graduate study. The committee will prescribe a study program based on the interests of the student and the principal graduate advisor. Students must complete all degree requirements within six years of beginning the study program. A B (3.0) average or higher must be maintained.  Students must maintain a B (3.0) average or higher, and no grade below C is acceptable.

Bachelor of Science/Master of Science Program

The B.S./M.S. program combines the undergraduate B.S. program with the M.S. program in geology, leading to the award of an Indiana University bachelor’s and master’s degree with completion of the M.S. thesis. The departmental graduate advisory committee administers the B.S./M.S. program.

Admission Requirements

Prospective students should have advanced standing in the undergraduate program. Students should apply to the program in early spring of the junior year. Students should submit GRE scores and three letters of recommendation. Application requires a minimum GPA of 3.0 and will be considered by the departmental graduate committee.

Degree Requirements

Course and thesis requirements are the same as those listed under the Master of Science program in this bulletin. Upon acceptance into the program, the student will prepare a research and course plan in consultation with a graduate academic advisory committee. Research reading and data collection begins in the summer prior to the senior year of undergraduate study, and will be completed the following summer. The fifth year of study is devoted to graduate course work and completion of the M.S. thesis.