M.S. Geology Degree


The Half Dome in YosemiteAn approved program for each candidate may be designed in consultation with the advisor on the basis of each individual's objectives. The program shall include at least 30 semester units earned beyond the bachelor's degree in 200-level (ie: graduate level) and 100-level (ie: upper division undergraduate level) courses approved for graduate credit. This total includes 4 semester units of thesis research. At least 12 units must consist of 200-level courses. All students are required to take a 2-unit seminar (GEOL 285). All candidates are required to submit a master's thesis.

All candidates must complete the equivalent of the requirements of the San José State University B.S. Geology degree, including a minimum of four weeks of field camp, as well as two semesters each of Calculus, Chemistry, and Physics.

The oral examination for the Master of Science degree is scheduled with the student's thesis advisor. The candidate must demonstrate competency in written English. An oral presentation of thesis research is to be made before an open meeting of the Geology Department. The thesis must be approved by the student's thesis committee and submitted in final form, as outlined in the Thesis Section of the San José State University catalog, to the Graduate Division of the university in accordance with the published deadlines.


Course Requirements


Core- Complete 12 Units from the following selection: 12-24
  • GEOL 213- Advanced Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology
  • GEOL 214- Sedimentary Petrology and Petrography
  • GEOL 222- Advanced Sedimentary Geology
  • GEOL 231- Advanced Structural Geology
  • GEOL 234- Advanced Geomorphology
  • GEOL 237- Advanced GIS/GPS Mapping
  • GEOL 238- Advanced Hydrogeology
  • GEOL 242- Advanced Paleontology
  • GEOL 255- Advanced Geology (Topics Vary)
Electives- Other 100-level or 200-level courses, selected with advisor approval. 0-12
Seminar- Two units required. May be taken twice for credit. 2-4
  • GEOL 285- Seminar (Topics Vary)
Thesis- Four units required. One per semester recommended. 4
  • GEOL 299- Master's Thesis



View the full guidelines for earning an M.S. degree in Geology at San José State University (PDF).