Degree Title and Name: Master of Science in Geography
Program Name and Number: Geography – MS4239
Department/Unit: Department of Geography
Delivery Mode: Athens Campus
Term(s) of Entry: Fall (preferred; and to be considered for financial aid); Spring may be possible for students not seeking financial aid
Program Overview: Students in the M.S. program emphasize the physical geographic subfields, the natural or social science aspects of environmental geography, and/or the geospatial techniques. They use the scientific method and quantitative techniques to study geographical questions and solve geographical problems. Within the M.S. curriculum the department has particular strengths in biogeography, geomorphology, climatology, meteorology, environmental geography, environmental planning, geographic information systems (GIS), and cartography. Students pursuing an M.S. degree in Geography may also earn the GISc certificate – CTGISG.
In this two-year program, M.S. students must complete a thesis as well as course work, which includes two seminars. The first year emphasizes course work and the development of a research question under the guidance of the student’s selected thesis supervisor. Students take the research and writing course in their first fall semester to help prepare them for the thesis research and writing experience. Students defend their thesis proposal at the end of the second semester to their three-member advisory committee. Any remaining courses are taken in the second year along with credit hours for researching and writing the thesis, conducted under the mentorship of the student’s thesis advisory committee. The thesis defense and the advisory committee’s final approval of the thesis typically occur in the student’s fourth semester. Because the master’s is our highest degree, our graduate students receive considerable careful and focused attention from our accomplished and award-winning faculty.
This program prepares students for professional positions in government, nonprofit organizations, or the private sector, and for further studies toward a Ph.D.
Program Learning Outcomes:
- Students will demonstrate the ability to identify, analyze, interpret, and draw conclusions about geographical information, data, processes, and problems
- Students will demonstrate proficiency in the use of such geographical research tools as GIS, cartography, remote sensing, and spatial statistics
- Students will be able to formulate a research methodology, execute a formal research project, and place their work in context of previous research
- Students will demonstrate the ability to communicate and discuss facts, ideas, geographic information, and research results in the oral and written presentation of their thesis research, including by graphical and quantitative means
Opportunities for Graduates: Graduates with an M.S. in Geography have a wide variety of professional opportunities in addition to pursuing doctoral degrees. Graduates may work in local, state, or federal government agencies, nonprofit organizations, consulting companies, educational institutions, and private industries as GIScience, global navigation (GPS), remote sensing, cartography, environmental, natural science, or social science specialists or managers. Some positions have a fieldwork component.
Link to Program: https://www.ohio.edu/cas/geography/grad/ms.cfm
Link to Program Handbook: https://www.ohio.edu/cas/geography/grad/courses-resources/handbook/index.cfm
The M.S. in Geography is designed to be a two-year program and requires:
- 40 credit hours (minimum) consisting of at least 28 hours of course work (count includes required courses) and 12 hours of thesis research; a maximum of two courses from outside the department may count toward the degree
- Geographic Research and Writing (GEOG 5000)
- Two seminars, with at least one from a physical geography or geographical technique subfield
- At least one geographical technique course
- 12 additional hours in course work, including at least two courses designated by the department as appropriate for the MS degree
- Successful defense of both a thesis proposal (end of first year) and the thesis (end of second year)
Culminating Experience: Successful defense and completion of a thesis
Applicants are expected to have a minimum GPA of 3.00 in the highest degree earned to date. In addition to the application materials required by the Graduate College, interested students must submit with their application a one- to two-page statement that describes their interest in both the field of geography and our graduate program, as well as a separate resume or curriculum vitae. Other application requirements include GRE scores and the submission of three letters of recommendation by individuals who can comment on the student’s preparation and potential for graduate studies. The Department of Geography welcomes dual-degree graduate students. Students should apply to start in fall semester to be considered for funding. To receive full consideration for funding decisions, all application materials must be submitted by February 15.
International Students: This program permits full-time enrollment in residence at Ohio University, and an I-20 may be issued based on admission to this program.