UNLV Graduate School Application
* All applicants must apply through the Graduate College Apply Yourself system to be considered by the Department for admission into our Graduate Program
The Department of Geoscience offers two graduate degrees:
The Doctor of Philosophy degree in Geoscience is designed to prepare students for demanding research-oriented careers in academia, government service, private consulting, and industry. Working closely with their advisor, students focus on original research in one of three emphasis areas: geology, hydrology, or soil science. Research expectations are high; students are expected to develop original lines of research that will lead to three or more original manuscripts that are suitable for submission to a refereed scientific journal. Students are expected to have strong content knowledge in their area of emphasis and three additional sub-disciplines of the geologic sciences. Fundamental knowledge levels are tested first in a diagnostic interview that is used to guide coursework taken by the student, and then later in a comprehensive exam.
Students who complete the PhD in Geology are suited for academic faculty positions, research, or management-level jobs in environmental consulting, energy exploration, mining, state or federal government agencies. The specialization that occurs in the PhD process often determines the range of careers available to a graduate. Working on cutting-edge science in a university, government agency, or teaching at the university level requires a PhD.
The Masters of Science degree in Geoscience is designed to prepare students for a broad range of challenging careers in government service, private consulting, and industry. This thesis-based degree program also serves as a stepping-stone for those students who wish to pursue further graduate studies at the Doctoral level. Working closely with their advisor, students focus on original research in one of several areas of specialization, including: petrology, volcanology, economic geology, structural geology, sedimentology, geochemistry, hydrology, soil science, climate change, petroleum geology, and paleontology. Students are expected to develop original research suitable for submission to a refereed scientific journal. Students are expected to have strong content knowledge in their area of emphasis, which is tested during the culminating defense of their thesis research.
Students who complete the MS in Geology are ideally suited for mid to management-level jobs in environmental consulting, energy exploration, mining, state or federal government agencies. The MS is the professional degree for geoscientists, and the salary for this level is the highest across all sub-disciplines. The jobs for MS-level geologists can range from field-based work such as geologic mapping, to computer modeling, to corporate management. Industries and agencies often provide additional training to MS-level geologists that allows them to perform specialized work, but the educational experience students gain with an MS is sufficient for immediately entering the workforce at mid to high-level positions. Most employers who hire at this level are looking for some amount of specialization (e.g. hydrologist, geophysicist, geochemist, structural geologist), although possessing a well-rounded geoscience education is often attractive for most industries/agencies.
For more information regarding Graduate College forms and deadlines, visit: http://graduatecollege.unlv.edu/forms.