Graduate Degrees

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For information on Master of Geosciences

Degrees in Geology

Graduate work in geology is offered at both the Master of Science (M.S.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) levels. Programs are designed to provide the student with an understanding of the fundamentals of geology and related disciplines. Research investigations comprise a significant part of each program.

Opportunities for research at both the M.S. and Ph.D. levels are available in sedimentology and stratigraphy, structural geology, tectonophysics, deep crust and mantle dynamics, isotope geochemistry, paleoclimates and climate change, paleobiology and paleoecology, engineering geology, hydrogeology and environmental geology and geochemistry.

Although degree level is not a requirement for professional practice in geology, the B.S. is usually considered as preparatory, the M.S. is considered a professional degree and the Ph.D. is considered a teaching and research degree. The M.S. degree is granted thesis option only.

In addition to university requirements for the Ph.D., the student's committee chair, with advice from the other committee members, will determine on an individual basis the student's needs in either foreign language or other broadening areas of study. The graduate faculty also will require an early evaluation of all Ph.D. candidates regarding the student's potential as a research scientist.

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Graduate students study three dimensional data at the Immersive Visualization Center in the Halbouty Building at TAMU.

Degrees in Geophysics

The degrees of Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy are offered in geophysics. Geophysics includes all areas of scientific inquiry that deal with the physical state of the planets and with the dynamic physical processes that act on and within the planets. 

The deep interior, crust, atmosphere, oceans and space all lie within the province of the geophysicist. To work effectively in so broad an area requires considerable depth and breadth of understanding of physical principles and considerable proficiency in mathematics. Thorough undergraduate training in an earth or physical science is ordinarily regarded as a necessary prerequisite for advanced study.

Petroleum Geosciences Graduate Certificate

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IODP research flagship, the Joides Resolution

Interested in a career in the petroleum industry? See our Petroleum Geosciences Graduate Certificate program.

Current research areas of members of the department include studies in theoretical and computational seismology focusing on the internal structure of the earth, earthquake mechanisms and seismic exploration; studies of the anisotropy and anelastic properties of sedimentary rocks and application to exploration; regional and global seismology; studies in experimental rock deformation focusing on the failure strength of rocks, friction in rocks; mechanics of fault development; fluid-flow properties of faults and dynamics of faulted reservoirs; marine studies of the structure of the oceanic crust and continental margins in the Gulf of Mexico, the Caribbean Sea and the Western Pacific; studies of magnetic anomalies near mid-ocean-ridge systems and the magnetization of oceanic crust; the analysis of magnetic and gravity anomalies and application to exploration and global geophysics; gravity anomalies near trenches, convection in the mantle and global tectonics; vertical seismic profiling; and attenuation of seismic waves.

Members of the department are also involved in geophysical investigations of the sea floor through the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program, which Texas A&M University manages on behalf of the National Science Foundation and the Joint Oceanographic Institute. These investigations include rock magnetism, heat flow, borehole logging and other aspects of marine geophysics.

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