Department of Earth and Environmental Science
The Department of Earth and Environmental Science offers programs leading towards the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees. The areas of possible graduate research are outlined by the wide range of faculty interest. Students with academic degrees in Geology, Anthropology, Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Engineering, Mathematics, or Physics are invited to apply. The M.S. is offered independently as a terminal degree. The M.S. program is designed to prepare students both for employment in such fields as petroleum geology and environmental geology, and for doctoral work; the Ph.D. program trains students to be independent researchers.
The graduate group guides research leading to doctoral degrees in range of fields that encompass our research interests in; Biogeochemistry, Environmental Geology, Paleobiology, Sea Level Rise, Oceanography, Surficial Processes, Tectonics, Thermochronology, and Vertebrate Paleontology.
Professional Masters Degrees are also available in Environmental Studies and Applied Geosciences. These programs are administered by the College of Liberal and Professional Studies and designed for both full and part-time students interested in professional careers. Program Directors and advisors are located in the Department of Earth and Environmental Science.
Master of Environmental Studies
The Master of Environmental Studies degree is offered by the School of Arts and Sciences in cooperation with the Institute for Environmental Studies. The degree is administered by the College of General Studies.
Master of Science in Applied Geosciences
This program is a companion to the existing Master of Environmental Studies Program, which emphasizes an interdisciplinary approach to environmental studies.
Special Admissions Requirements for Doctoral Programs
The GRE General Test is required. Undergraduate preparation in physics, chemistry, biology, and mathematics, as well as in geology is recommended; the Graduate Group welcomes applicants who have majored in these fields, and will consider applicants from any field. The Graduate Group recommends that students who have not taken an undergraduate field-geology course make arrangements to do so before matriculating.
Ph.D. students must pass a preliminary examination showing command of a range of geologic sub-fields, and advanced knowledge of the field of proposed concentration. Before admission to degree candidacy, each student must present an acceptable proposal for thesis research, and pass an oral examination covering that proposal but also extending to a broad range of related knowledge. Ph.D. candidates must sustain a public oral examination on their theses and allied subjects.
Doctoral candidates are expected to have reading knowledge of at least one foreign language that is significantly represented in the geologic literature.
The Graduate Group collaborates closely in research and graduate training with colleagues in the Biology Department, the Museum of Archeology and Anthropology, and the Laboratory for Research on the Structure of Materials at Penn. We also have long standing collaborations with the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, the National Museum of Natural History of the Smithsonian Institution, the Stroud Water Resource Center, and the International Institute of Tropical Forestry, Luquillo LTER program in Puerto Rico and the Luquillo LCZO.