Thank you for your interest in our Geography M.S. or Ph.D. degrees. Our program is ranked 29th out of 64 Geography Departments ranked by Academic Analytics. We have a collegial faculty who are highly productive, ranking 13th or 14th in categories such as grants and journal articles. Our department also has several established clusters of excellence with an international reputation. Our faculty have obtained grants from the National Science Foundation—including two highly prestigious CAREER awards—and many other nationally competitive sources.
Graduate-student research focuses on various thematic areas such as Human Geography (including human-environment interactions), Physical Geography (with strengths in biogeography, climatology, and geomorphology), and Geographic Techniques (GIST, remote sensing). We have a varied and vibrant graduate program with more than 50 graduate students pursuing research around the globe. Moreover, our graduate students come from across the United States and several other countries. Our students are supported and encouraged to network at regional and national conferences, and many have won "best student paper" awards and other marks of distinction.
Faculty and students in the Department of Geography aim to understand and improve the human habitat through our individual and collective research, teaching, and service. We strive to discover, interpret, transmit, and apply knowledge concerning the natural and social processes that pattern Earth's surface. As scientists and scholars, we are committed to creating research programs that improve public welfare, embrace the highest intellectual standards, and advance geographic understanding. Our graduate programs provide students with the foundations for professional success, and prepare them--especially the Ph.D. students--to assume roles as stewards of the discipline of geography.
Our M.S. program is designed for 4 semesters of full-time study, while Ph.D. students are expected to pass preliminary exams in their 4th semester and obtain the doctorate within 1-2 additional years (depending on the research protocols), so that total time to degree for Ph.D. students is between 6 and 8 semesters of full-time study.