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Graduate Programs

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The Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences offers offer Master of Science in Geological Sciences and Environmental Geosciences and Doctor of Philosophy degree in Earth and Environmental Sciences. We also offer specializations through the Environmental Toxicology Program and the Ecology, Evolutionary Biology and Behavior Program.

The Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Michigan State University is committed to the principles of equal opportunity and non-discrimination. As such we welcome inquiries and applications from prospective graduate students without regard to race, color, gender, gender identity, religion, national origin, political persuasion, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, height, weight, veteran status, age or familial status.   

As a student in our graduate program you will develop skills to address problems facing the modern environment and problems related to understanding the Earth's past and future. The Department's graduate programs emphasize the study of the biological, chemical, and physical processes of the Earth and the application of knowledge about these processes to solve applied and basic problems.

We welcome the application of motivated students to our Department at any time of the year. Research and teaching assistantships are available for highly qualified applicants and are awarded in fall of each year. In addition, several fellowships and scholarships provide additional financial support for summer stipends, research involvement by undergraduate students, conference travel, and research and field expenses.

Acceptance into the EES graduate program requires a faculty sponsor within EES who will act as the direct research advisor to the student and whom assumes the associated financial responsibilities of their continuation through the degree program. A list of eligible faculty can be found here. The best chances of success for obtaining a sponsor is to contact faculty within your research areas of interest and develop a relationship with them well in advance of the submission of your graduate application. Because of the central role individual EES faculty play in the graduate application process, you are directed to contact prospective faculty advisors—not the graduate secretary or graduate director—with questions about applying to EES and application progress and timelines following submission. Some of the many research opportunities being specifically sought for admission in the 2024 cycle are listed here.

Department Research

  1. Environment
  2. Geochemistry and Geophysics
  3. Education and Cognition

Useful Links


Course descriptions can be found on the MSU Course Description Webpage