Jul 20, 2019  
2018-2019 SDSM&T Academic Catalog 
    
2018-2019 SDSM&T Academic Catalog

Geology, Geological Engineering, and Mining Engineering, PhD


Contact Information

Dr. Laurie Anderson, Department Head
Department of Geology and Geological Engineering
Mineral Industries 303
(605) 394-2461
E-mail: Laurie.Anderson@sdsmt.edu

Dr. Lance Roberts, Department Head
Department of Mining Engineering and Management
Mineral Industries 235B
(605) 394-2344
E-mail: Lance.Roberts@sdsmt.edu

PhD in Geology, Geological Engineering, and Mining Engineering

Students must elect to pursue a specialization in Geology, Geological Engineering, or Mining Engineering. Each specialization has different background and program requirements. For more information see the graduate programs pages for the Departments of Geology and Geological Engineering  and the Department of Mining Engineering and Management .

Degree requirements


Distribution of credits


Geology Specialization and Geological Engineering Specialization

Core requirements: 4 credits
Research requirements: 20-36 credits
Elective requirements: 32-48 credits
Total credits: 72

Mining Engineering Specialization

Core requirements: 3 credits
Research or project requirements: 20-36 credits
Elective requirements: 33-49 credits
Total credits: 72

For all three specializations, at least 36 of the required 72 credits must be taken at the 600-level or above.

Students may apply 24 coursework credits and 6 research credits from a previous MS degree toward the PhD requirements, subject to approval by the student’s committee.

Core requirements


Research requirements


The completion of a doctoral dissertation, approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee and the Dean of Graduate Education, is required for this degree.

*At least 20 credits of 898 are required for the degree. No more than 36 credits of 898 may be counted toward the degree.

Elective requirements


The candidate’s committee is responsible for assisting the student in developing a program of study that prepares the student for his/her intended field as well as provides general knowledge for the discipline.

Geology Specialization


A total of 32 elective credits are required, including courses determined by the student’s advising committee to meet the following objectives:

  • one GEOL/GEOE course emphasizing field methods
  • one GEOL/GEOE course emphasizing analytical methods
  • one GEOL/GEOE course emphasizing computational methods

It is recommended that six (6) to twelve (12) hours of coursework be taken outside the Department of Geology and Geologcial Engineering.

Geological Engineering Specialization


All PhD students in the Geological Engineering specialization are expected to focus in one of the three areas of groundwater/environmental, geomechanics, or energy/mineral resources. A total of 32 elective credits are required, including courses determined by the student’s advising committee to meet the following objectives:

  • one GEOL/GEOE course emphasizing field methods
  • one GEOL/GEOE course emphasizing analytical methods
  • one GEOL/GEOE course emphasizing computational methods

It is recommended that six (6) to twelve (12) hours of coursework be taken outside the Department of Geology and Geologcial Engineering.

Mining Engineering Specialization


A total of 33 elective credits are required, including:

  • At least 15 credits of electives with an MEM prefix
  • At least 21 credits of additional MEM or other electives

Examinations


When the student has substantially completed the required 36 credits of coursework for the PhD, and before work on the dissertation research commences in earnest, the student must complete a combined examination composed of two parts: a qualifying examination and a comprehensive examination. After successful completion of both exams, the student will be admitted to PhD candidacy. Detailed information on both examinations is outlined in the Geology and Geological Engineering Graduate Handbook (available only via on-campus or VPN connection), The Mining Engineering Graduate Handbook, and in the Graduate Education Policies GEP VIII. Ph.D. Degree Requirements 

If the student has not completed all requirements for the PhD degree by the fifth year following the comprehensive examination, his/her active candidacy status will be automatically terminated and the comprehensive examination must be repeated.

Qualifying examination


The qualifying examination will consist of a written examination covering the student’s field of study and related subjects.

Comprehensive examination and admission to candidacy


The comprehensive examination consists of the oral presentation and defense of the student’s dissertation research proposal. All PhD students are required to prepare a research proposal for the research to be accomplished for the dissertation.  

Dissertation defense


A dissertation defense and a final oral examination are required for this degree. The final defense must take place no earlier than 12 months after admission to candidacy.

Additional requirements


For the Geology and Geological Engineering specializations, any physical specimens (and associated documentation) collected, prepared, and cited in a thesis or dissertation are to be deposited in the Museum of Geology as part of the student’s work. Guidelines (available only via on-campus or VPN connection) and forms are available.

In addition to these degree-specific requirements, the student must also meet the requirements and policies applied to all graduate degrees  by the Council of Graduate Education.