Curriculum Requirements

The MGS M.S. degree requires 30 total credits. 1
Course Credits 224
Recommended Courses 3
It is strongly recommended that all 1st year students enroll in at least 2 of the following courses:
Earth Surface Processes
Introductory Geochemistry
Geophysics
Thesis Research 6
Master's Thesis
Additional Requirements
Research Ethics
Comprehensive Examination 4
MGS Seminar (MGS 701) 5
Total Credit Hours30
1

Minimum of 24 course credits and 6 thesis credits.

2
  • The 24 course credits may all be from the MGS course curriculum.
  • MGS M.S. students are not required to take a course outside of the program.
3

The intent of the recommended course requirements is to ensure preparation across the range of subfields within MGS. 

4
  • The MGS comprehensive examination is normally administered once per year, in May or early June after the conclusion of the spring semester. 
    • Students who enter the program for the fall semester are expected to take the comprehensive exam after the conclusion of the spring semester.
    • Students who enter the program in the spring semester will generally take the comprehensive exam after the following spring semester.
  • The comprehensive exam traditionally consists of two parts, administered on separate days: (1) a day of written questions assembled from all MGS faculty, and (2) a follow-­up oral exam approximately an hour-­long administered by a panel of 3‐4 MGS faculty with a range of expertise.  
  • The written questions span the full range of subfields within the MGS program, and that part of the exam is generally structured to allow some choice among questions within a subfield. The oral exam committee will generally conclude with a judgment as to whether the student has passed the comprehensive exam. 
  • If a student does not follow the above course recommendations and performs poorly on the comprehensive exam, it may trigger a requirement to enroll in the respective course as a condition for further advancement in the MGS program.
5

All MSG M.S. and Ph.D. students are required to participate regularly in seminars throughout their residency and must register for it one time to graduate.