Online Master of Science (M.S.) in Geology - University of Houston
Skip to main content

Online Master of Science (M.S.) in Geology

This is one of four subplans in EAS that allows a student to obtain an M.S. in Geology or Geophysics with a fully online curriculum.

This program prepares students with prior training in geosciences for professional positions requiring advanced geological backgrounds in academic, educational, governmental, and industrial sectors. Additionally, this degree can further prepare a student with a B.S. for admission to a Ph.D. program in the geosciences.

The UH faculty in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences are internationally recognized for research achievement and teaching. Many of the faculty have significant experience in governmental and industrial geoscience positions in addition to their academic and educational experience.

Admission to the Program

Admission to our graduate program is based on a competitive selection process. Meeting the minimum requirements published does not guarantee admission to our program.

  • Candidates for the Master of Science (M.S.) in Geology are required to have successfully completed a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Geology equivalent to one at the University of Houston.
  • A complete graduate school application must be submitted.
  • Scores from the General GRE examination taken in the last 5 years are optional.
  • Individuals with a lower cumulative GPA from a U.S. institution may be admitted conditionally.
  • Letters of recommendation are also given considerable weight in the evaluation process.
  • Students who did not earn a prior degree from a U.S. institution or a country where English is the medium of instruction (see list in the General Admission Policy) must meet minimum test scores to demonstrate English language proficiency. Visit International Students to learn more.


Candidates are expected to have the necessary science and mathematics background and should have successfully completed coursework deemed equivalent to that of the B.S. in Geology degree at the University of Houston.

The department will determine what deficiencies, if any, are present, and the acceptable means of removing those deficiencies (e.g., course work within and/or outside the department, directed study, research papers). Applicants with a few deficiencies can satisfy those requirements while also taking graduate courses at the University of Houston; these requirements will be listed in an offer letter should the student be admitted. It is normally recommended that a student with 6 or more deficiency courses (e.g., those whose bachelor’s degree was in another discipline) work toward a second bachelor’s degree in Geology prior to graduate work.

Degree Requirements Online Plan II Non-Thesis M.S. Option in Geology

Credit Hour Requirements

Students may satisfy the Online Non-Thesis M.S. Geology degree requirements by satisfactorily completing a minimum of 36.0 approved Credit Hours, to include formal Earth & Atmospheric Science courses (GEOL) at the 6000 level or higher and a Capstone course (or approved substitute). Students are encouraged to consult with the Geology Graduate Faculty Advisor to make their selections of electives.

Core Course Requirements

To ensure breadth in the students M.S. curriculum, all students in Plan II Online are required to take 5 core courses. The five core courses required for Plan II Online degree are:

  • GEOL 6341 - Geochemistry - Credit Hours: 3.0
  • GEOL 6380 - Sequence Stratigraphy - Credit Hours: 3.0
  • GEOL 6350 - Advanced Structural Geology - Credit Hours: 3.0
  • GEOL 6351 - Basin Modeling - Credit Hours: 3.0
  • GEOL 6388 - Geospatial Analysis and Applications - Credit Hours: 3.0


In addition to the 5 core courses (15 credit hours) and the Capstone (3 credit hours) an additional 18 credit hours of formal Earth & Atmospheric Sciences elective courses (GEOL) at the 6000 level or higher must be taken.

Capstone Requirement

Students are required to complete a capstone project and report. Students may petition the graduate advisor to substitute an additional approved elective to replace the capstone.

  • GEOL 7301 - Capstone Project – Credit Hours: 3.0

Approximate Costs for One Graduate Course Online

Online Resident Students

The approximate cost of 3 hours of graduate coursework for a Resident of Texas student (as of spring 2022) is:

  • Tuition and Consolidated Fees (mean): $1,100.00
  • Mandatory Fee – Student Service: $226.00*
  • Online Education Fee: $265.00*
  • Professional M.S. Fee: $1,884.00
  • TOTAL: $3,475.00

Online Non-Resident Students

The approximate cost of 3 hours of graduate coursework for a Non-Resident of Texas student (as of spring 2022) is:

  • Tuition and Consolidated Fees (mean): $2,660.00
  • Mandatory Fee – Student Service: $226.00*
  • Online Education Fee: $265.00*
  • Professional M.S. Fee: $1,884.00
  • TOTAL: $5,035.00

Fees with * only have a small increase per additional credit hours, hence price per course drops with a 3- or 4-course semester load.

For additional information or details, contact Dr. Don Van Nieuwenhuise at