Program Requirements

The applicable requirements will be those in effect during that academic year when the student first registered in the Program, unless stated otherwise in this Handbook or by the Program Director.

All RSMAS courses are listed on the RSMAS website. All courses taken by students should be approved by their advisors. Students are recommended to consult with their advisors and the ATM Program Director regarding their choices of courses. Deviations from the requirements must be approved by the advisor and the ATM Program Director.

ATM students have a common set of required core courses.  Elective courses are chosen from offerings in ATM as well as other units of RSMAS and UM.

Curriculum Requirements

The ATM Ph.D. degree requires 60 total credits. 1
Core Courses9
Introduction to Atmospheric Chemistry
Introduction to Atmospheric Dynamics
Introduction to Atmospheric Physics
Electives 216
Dissertation Research 35
Doctoral Dissertation
Required Examinations
Comprehensive Examination 3
Qualifying Examination 4
Additional Requirements
Research Ethics
ATM Seminar 5
ATM 701
Educational Training Program (TA) 6
Educational Training 1
Educational Training 2
Educational Training 3
Total Credit Hours60


The Department of Atmospheric Sciences (ATM), started in 2016, seeks to advance knowledge and understanding of the physical, chemical, and dynamical processes that determine our weather, our climate, and their interactions with the oceans and the continents. We train graduate students and young scientists to be leaders in the atmospheric sciences and related fields. Through our distinct strengths in climate dynamics, tropical meteorology, and cloud and aerosol processes, we strive to achieve excellence in research and education that will better inform the public and policy makers on how to prepare for hazards and changes in the weather-climate system.


  • To train graduate students and young scientists to be leaders in the atmospheric sciences and related fields.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate advanced knowledge of atmospheric science and how scientific research in their topical areas relates to societal issues.
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to conduct high- quality research in atmospheric sciences as evidenced by their dissertation research.
  • Students will demonstrate oral and written communication skills commensurate with employment as a research scientist or equivalent professional level scientist.