Master of Science


The Master of Science in geoscience requires a minimum of 30 s.h. of graduate credit. The program is designed primarily to prepare students for professional careers in geoscience, or for more advanced studies. M.S. students may count up to 8 s.h. of research credit toward the 30 s.h. required for the degree. They must earn at least 24 s.h. toward the degree in University of Iowa courses taken after they enroll in the program. M.S. students also must complete 12:201 - Geoscience Seminar Series during each semester until they defend their thesis.

M.S. thesis students are responsible for obtaining their advisory committee’s approval of a suitable program of course work and for satisfactory development of research plans as outlined in a thesis proposal, which should be completed and approved by the department chair before the end of the second semester of full-time study. Thesis students must deliver a half-hour public presentation of their thesis, followed by an oral defense. M.S. students are also required to present their research at a local, regional, national, or international meeting approved by the DEO before graduating from the program

Individuals interested in pursuing the M.S. without thesis must obtain the department chair’s permission. The program is designed for students with extensive geological background and experience. Requirements for the nonthesis option are similar to those for the M.S. with thesis, except that in place of the thesis, nonthesis students submit a manuscript that their thesis committee deems acceptable for submission for publication. The student may choose to submit a previously published manuscript. Nonthesis students also must take a final examination that covers course work and the work done in place of the thesis.