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M.S. in Geoscience

Program Coordinator: Dr. Brittany Brand | | (208)-426-4154

General Information

Boise State University offers studies leading to the M.S. degree in geoscience to students with a bachelors degree in geology or a related discipline who are seeking to develop the capability for research or professional careers. All candidates for the M.S. in Geoscience at Boise State University must successfully complete and defend a thesis comprising original scientific research. Students may include one or more fields in their studies and in their theses, such as biostratigraphy, economic geology, environmental geology, geomorphology, exploration geophysics, isotope geochemistry, paleoclimatology, paleontology, petrography and petrology of igneous and metamorphic rocks, remote sensing, stratigraphy and sedimentology, structural geology, tectonics, and volcanic stratigraphy.

Students are encouraged to search the Department’s home page for information about potential graduate advisors, ongoing research, thesis topics, and current activities within the research units of the department.

Graduate Program Committee

The Graduate Program Committee of the Department of Geosciences consists of the graduate program coordinators for the thesis-based geophysics, geoscience, hydrologic sciences degrees, and the non-thesis earth science degree, plus the chair of the Department. The duties of the Graduate Program Committee are defined by the Department and are consistent with policies set by the University. These duties include development of recommendations for admission of prospective graduate students, decisions on transfer credits and required background courses, recommendations for the award of departmental graduate fellowships and assistantships, and appointment of Supervisory Committees for graduate students.

Application and Admission Requirements

Application for admission may be made by graduates of accredited institutions holding a baccalaureate degree in geology or related discipline. Regular admission may be awarded to applicants who have earned a minimum grade point average of 3.0 during the last two years of academic work; admission will be based on grade point, GRE scores, letters of recommendation, and with support of a faculty advisor or advocate. Continued enrollment in the program requires a minimum 3.0 grade point (B) average and satisfactory progress toward the degree.

The applicant’s program of study should have included a minimum of:

  • 6 semester hours in Chemistry (Equivalent to CHEM 111 and 112 with labs)
  • 6 semester hours in Calculus based Physics (Equivalent to PHYSICS 211 and 212 with labs)
  • 6 semester hours in Differential and Integral Calculus (Equivalent to MATH 170 and 175)
  • 3 semester hours in Statistics (Equivalent to MATH 254, 360, or 361)
  • 3 Semester hours in Geographic Information Systems
  • 6 Semester hours in geology

Students may be admitted provisionally if their background lacks some prerequisites. A Supervisory Committee may prescribe additional appropriate prerequisite courses for an individual student, subject to approval of the Graduate Program Committee. A prerequisite course may be taken during the early phases of graduate study, but credits earned for this purpose will not apply to the graduate program.

Application materials are available online.


Further questions may be referred to the coordinator, Geosciences Doctoral Program, Boise State University, 1910 University Drive, Boise, ID 83725, telephone (208) 426-4154 or e-mail:

For more information and degree requirements, please refer to the university catalogs.