Master of Science in Geoscience

Coastal Plain Geology field trip
Master of Science in Geoscience
Marsh studies
GPR studies on Wrightsville Beach
Master of Science in Geoscience

Program Overview

The Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of North Carolina Wilmington offers a program of study leading to the Master of Science (M.S.) degree in geoscience. The primary goal of the program is the development of professionals capable of conducting research and applied work in the geosciences through the broad study of modern and ancient Earth and ocean processes as well as human-environment interactions.

The program includes thesis and portfolio options, both of which provide a foundation for advanced study or employment in the geological, geospatial technology, oceanographic and environmental fields, as well as the mineral and energy industries and government agencies.

Specific goals of the program are to provide advanced research and education opportunities in the geosciences, and to prepare geoscientists for solving contemporary geoscience problems. Specific objectives are: 1) to develop competence in the geosciences through advanced course work and research; 2) to develop professional competence in the assessment of geoscience problems through the integrated analysis of geological, oceanographic, and geographical data using advanced technologies; 3) to develop a level of research competence in the geosciences that encourages continued effort towards an advanced (e.g., doctoral) degree, professional licensure, or employment as a geoscientist; and, 4) to provide the scientific community with meaningful geologic, geographic, and oceanographic data.

The Department offers teaching assistantships on a competitive basis. The majority of students awarded assistantships also receive out-of-state tuition remissions. To be considered for assistantship funding applications should be submitted prior to January 31st (midnight EST). Assistantship funds for students entering the program in the spring semester are rarely available.  Note: GRE Test score requirements are waived for this program during 2021 due to the pandemic.


Statement from the Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences

The Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences is committed to providing a safe and respectful learning, working, and social environment. We believe that all members of the campus community should interact in a mutually respectful, professional, and fair manner. We oppose and will not tolerate hostile environment harassment nor the rhetoric of intolerance and bigotry of any kind, including but not limited to racism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, misogyny, and religious intolerance. We repudiate verbal and emotional harassment and bullying which undermine, patronize, humiliate, intimidate, or demean others, as these may be as painful and damaging as direct physical threats.

Program Video

For further information contact:

Dr. Andrea Hawkes, Graduate Program Coordinator, 910 962-2350,
Dr. Chad Lane, Department Chair, 910 962-3466,