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The Department of Geoscience offers a Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. The M.S. program prepares students for employment in industry or a future Ph.D., whereas the Ph.D. degree is geared for future employment in higher education or research.. A M.S. student typically writes a thesis with a depth and breadth similar to one published research paper. Typical Ph.D. projects are broader, more independent, and result in dissertations with the approximate research content of three published papers.

All geoscience graduate students are responsible for meeting requirements and deadlines. They should acquaint themselves with the Manual of Rules and Regulations of the Graduate College, particularly sections IX, X, and XII (see Graduate College in the Catalog), and with the University calendar (for deadline dates and so forth). All entering graduate students are required to enroll in 12:207 - Geologic Orientation during the Fall semester of their first year in the graduate program.

The department provides detailed information about current graduate degree requirements and timelines for making satisfactory progress toward a degree in the document “The University of Iowa Guidelines for Graduate Study in Geoscience”. This document can be found at the bottom of this page by clicking on “Graduate Student Guidelines”.

Throughout their graduate study, all M.S. and Ph.D. students must maintain a GPA of at least 3.00 on all course work required for their degree and on all graduate-level geoscience course work. Students whose GPA drops below 3.00 are placed on academic probation.

Geoscience graduate students are encouraged to present their research at local, regional, national, or international meetings. The department provides partial funding for travel to such meetings.

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