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South Dakota School of Mines & Technology

— Science and Engineering since 1885 —

South Dakota School of Mines & Technology

    South Dakota School of Mines & Technology
   
 
  Nov 21, 2017
 
 
    
2017-2018 SDSM&T Academic Catalog

Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, M.S.


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Contact Information

Dr. William Capehart, Program Coordinator
Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences Program
Mineral Industries 201
(605) 394-1994
E-mail: William.Capehart@sdsmt.edu

Faculty

Associate Professors Capehart, French, Kliche; Assistant Kunza; Emeritus Professors Detwiler, Helsdon, Hjelmfelt and Smith. Instructor Clabo.

Masters of Science Study in Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences

The Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences (AES) program offers graduate courses leading to the Master of Science degree in Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences with specializations in meteorology or environmental science, and the doctor of philosophy degree in Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences.  See here for more detail in the AES Doctoral Program:  Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences, Ph.D.  

Meteorology Specialization

The meteorology specialization in the AES graduate program is designed to give students experience in atmospheric science-related research while developing a broad understanding of the factors influencing atmospheric phenomena, including solar and terrestrial radiation, fluid dynamics, mesoscale processes, regional climate processes, thermodynamics, microphysical and electrical processes in clouds, and atmospheric chemistry. Instruction is offered in the interpretation of conventional weather, satellite and radar data; observations collected by state-of-the art research instrumentation; and output from numerical models of atmospheric processes. Program requirements are specified below

Environmental Science Specialization

The environmental science specialization in the AES graduate program is designed to give students experience in environmental science research while learning about global environmental change, biogeochemistry, aquatic ecology, atmosphere biosphere interactions, hydrology, experimental design and analyses, and environmental modeling.  Program requirements are specified below.

Admission to the Masters of Science in Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences 

A student applying for admission to the master’s degree program in the Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences Program should have a baccalaureate degree in meteorology or atmospheric sciences, environmental science, biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, or engineering.  For the meteorology specialization, undergraduate courses in physics and in mathematics through ordinary differential equations are required and experience with computer programming is recommended.  For the environmental science specialization an undergraduate course in calculus is required and courses in biology, chemistry, and physics are desirable.  Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores from the General Test are required for all students except School of Mines graduates. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores are required of all applicants from colleges outside the U.S.

Thesis and Non-Thesis Options

The M.S. AES Program has both thesis and non-thesis options.   The thesis option requires a total of 32 credit hours of which a minimum of 6 credit hours (but no more than 9 credit hours) of research credits reserved for completing a thesis.  The non-thesis option requires 32 credit hours of which 3 credit hours are reserved for an M.S. research project. 

Requirements for the M.S. degree in Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences


Thesis Option requirements (both Meteorology and Environmental Science Specializations):


  • 32 credit hours of course work and thesis research as approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee.
    • Fifteen credit hours of coursework in atmospheric and environmental sciences (AES prefix) at the 500-level or above.
    • Registration in 2 credits of AES 690 Seminar (offered in the spring semester only).
    • Six to nine additional credit hours of non-atmospheric and environmental sciences electives at the 400-level or above (300-level non-atmospheric sciences courses can be accepted if approved by the Council on Graduate Education), or atmospheric and environmental sciences electives at the 500-level. (For specific policies on transferring undergraduate credits to the M.S. degree program, review Graduate Education Enrollment Policies ).
    • Thesis research - 6-9 credit hours.
  • Selection of a graduate committee and completion of a Program of Study by mid-term of the second semester at SDSM&T.
  • Completion of a master’s thesis. The thesis must adhere to the format and content guidelines as set forth by the graduate school, and be approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee and the Dean of Graduate Education.

Specific requirements for the Meteorology Specialization


All students are required to complete AES 406/506  (Global and Environmental Change) and a course focused on computer applications for research.  This includes one of AES 419/519  Computing Methods in Atmospheric Sciences, or another appropriate course involving computer applications as approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee.

Students entering the program with a bachelor’s degree in fields outside of atmospheric sciences or meteorology must take the following courses: 

Specific requirements for the Environmental Science Specialization


All students under the Environmental Science specialization are required to complete AES 406/506 Global Environmental Change .  Additional coursework will be decided by the student’s graduate advisory committee and outlined in the student’s program of study.

Non-Thesis Option requirements (both Meteorology and Environmental Science specializations):


  • 32 credit hours of coursework and thesis research as approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee
  • Up to 3 credits may be counted for research related activities.  AES 788  (Master’s Research Project)
  • 2 Credit Hours Applied to AES 690  (Seminar)
  • A scholarly paper will be required for the non-thesis option
  • For the Meteorology Specialization, the following courses are required at the graduate (500) level:
  • For the Environmental Science Specialization, the following courses are required at the graduate (500) level:

Accelerated MS option (both Meteorology Environmental Sciences specializations)


SD Mines undergraduate students admitted to the “accelerated” program may apply up to 9 credits of approved 400/500/600 level AES course work taken as undergraduate or approved electives for the B.S. degree requirements to the M.S.  All elective courses must be approved in advance of registration by major professor or program coordinator.   (For specific policies on transferring undergraduate credits to the M.S. degree program, review Graduate Education Policies on M.S. Degree Requirements )

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