Geology and Geological Engineering Graduate Programs
The graduate programs in the Department of Geology and Geological Engineering equip geologists, geological engineers, and paleontologists with strong technical backgrounds, significant research opportunities, and superior field experiences, so they are well prepared to live and work in a diverse global environment. We offer graduate study opportunities at both the MS and PhD level with a MS in Geology and Geological Engineering, a MS in Paleontology and a PhD in Geology and Geological Engineering (including paleontology). Degree requirements are available at http://geology.sdsmt.edu/courses, Students may also participate in the interdisciplinary Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences PhD program available on campus.
Prospective students are encouraged to contact specific faculty members regarding research interests prior to applying for admission. Assistantship and fellowship support is available and is based on academic performance and/or financial need. The Ivanhoe International Center at SDSM&T provides assistance to international students applying for graduate admission. Opportunities for international research are available through faculty research programs in Turkey, China, Mongolia, Iceland, Brazil, and other locations.
MS in Geology and Geological Engineering
Students in the MS degree program may specialize in either geology or geological engineering and complete a research project culminating in the defense of a MS thesis. A non-thesis degree option is available with permission of the Department Head.
Graduate students in the Geological Engineering specialization typically conduct research in areas related to water quality and resources, ground water, environmental resource protection, geologic hazards, remote sensing, geotechnical/engineering geology, energy and mineral resources, or environmental and exploration geophysics.
Graduate students in the Geology specialization typically conduct research in energy and mineral resources, geochemistry, petroleum geology, sedimentation/stratigraphy, mineralogy/petrology, geophysics/geodynamics, GIS/remote sensing, and structure/tectonics.
MS in Paleontology
The Department of Geology and Geological Engineering offers a MS degree in paleontology, the only such advanced degree in the United States. For the MS in paleontology, students complete a research project culminating in the defense of a MS thesis; a non-thesis option is not available for this degree program. The MS in paleontology offers many opportunities for field-based research as well as courses in museum studies.
Faculty expertise includes marine micropaleontology, vertebrate paleontology, and invertebrate paleontology. Areas of research include biostratigraphy, biogeography, paleoclimatology, trace element and isotopic paleontology, and evolutionary paleoecology. Resources available to graduate students in paleontology include the extensive collections of the Museum of Geology.
PhD in Geology and Geological Engineering
The PhD. degree program emphasizes the completion of a dissertation that makes a unique and significant research contribution. Students may specialize in geology (which includes paleontology) or geological engineering.
Doctoral students work with faculty mentors to develop a specialized program of study in an active research area within the department, including ground water, water quality and resources, environmental resource protection, geologic hazards, geotechnical/engineering geology, energy and mineral resources, environmental and exploration geophysics, geochemistry, petroleum geology, sedimentation/stratigraphy, mineralogy/petrology, geodynamics, GIS/remote sensing, paleontology or structure/tectonics.