Dec 01, 2022  
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Geology, Ph.D.

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Degree Information

Admission Application Deadlines:

Minimum Total Hours:
60 (post-master’s)
90 (post-bachelor’s)
Program Level: Doctoral
CIP Code: 40.0601
Dept. Code: GLY
Program (Major/College): GLY AS
Approved: 1976

Contact Information

College: Arts and Sciences
Department: Geology

Contact Information:

*Deadline for students seeking assistantship/fellowship support is one month earlier. Foreign student applicants should provide their materials as early as is feasible to permit time to meet immigration and visa requirements if admitted.

Geology incorporates the fundamentals of biology, chemistry, mathematics, and physics to study the earth and the processes that affect our planet.

Admission Information

Must meet University Admission and English Proficiency requirements as well as requirements for admission to the major, listed below.

  • 3 letters of recommendation,
  • personal statement,
  • listing of previous coursework,
  • transcripts, and
  • GRE is required, but no minimum specified.

Curriculum Requirements

Total Minimum Hours:

60 hours post master’s
90 hours post bachelors


Core Requirements (15 Credit Hours)

Structured coursework, of which at least fifteen hours must be at 6000 level, selected with the advisor from the following list, or other graduate course as approved by the Graduate Director:

Other Course Requirements (33 Credit Hours)

Determined at the discretion of the student’s committee

May include

Qualifying Exam and Admission to Candidacy

Admission to candidacy will be based on the results of a general examination administered by the student’s committee. The format of the exam will be determined by the committee at least one week prior to the onset of the examination. Normally, it will consist of a written section or sections, followed by an oral examination chaired by the student’s research advisor. After admission to candidacy, all doctoral students will make at least one formal presentation of their research prior to graduation. Any appropriate venue is acceptable, e.g., Dept. colloquium, oral or poster sessions at a scientific meeting of at least regional scope.

General examinations and presentations of dissertation proposals should be completed no later than the end of the second year in the doctoral major or at the time determined by the student’s committee. The examining and dissertation committees are the same and will be comprised of no less than five members, at least three of which must be USF faculty, and at least one member from outside the department.

Dissertation (12 Credit Hours)

Other Information

A minimum of 90 credit hours will be required for students pursuing a Ph.D. degree from a B.S. degree. This includes any graduate credits earned prior to admission to the doctoral major. Compared to the requirements starting from a M.S. degree as described in the paragraph below, 30 additional credit hours are required for students starting from a B.S. degree. Students are recommended to satisfy the requirements similar to that of a MS degree during the first two years of the Ph.D. study.

All doctoral students must maintain good standing in the Office of Graduate Studies (overall GPA =3.0) and maintain satisfactory academic progress toward the degree. Any student who receives a C in a structured course will be placed on academic probation. This probation can be terminated by achieving grades of B or higher in the subsequent semester of full-time enrollment. If a second grade of C is received, the student is terminated from the doctoral major. Only courses in which the student receives at least a B may be counted toward the structured-course requirement. There is also a requirement that Ph.D. students have at least two semesters of full-time residence. While meeting the residency requirements, candidates must be full-time students in good academic standing.

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