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Geological Oceanography

Students in geological oceanography take basic courses which cover topics in marine geophysics and plate tectonics, petrology of oceanic rocks, sedimentation processes in the ocean, and paleoceanography and paleoclimatology. Students may select from advanced courses in these fields as well as in volcanology, paleomagnetism, micropaleontology and stratigraphy, isotope geochemistry, and deep-sea sedimentary environments.


Program Requirements

Master of Science: OCG 695; 6 credits of OCG 500-600 level courses outside of the geological oceanography discipline (not including OCG 695); participation in a regular ocean research cruise; thesis. Candidates for M.S. degrees must satisfactorily complete 30 credits (24 course credits and 6 research credits).

Doctor of Philosophy: OCG 540 and any two of 501, 521, 561; OCG 695; six credits of OCG 600 level courses (excluding problems and research courses and OCG 695); participation in a regular ocean research cruise; comprehensive examination; dissertation. A Ph.D. qualifying examination is required of all doctoral students. This requirement is satisfied by completing, with a grade of B or better, OCG 540 and any two of 501, 521, 561. Ph.D. candidates must satisfactorily complete 72 credits (42 course credits and 30 research credits).

In consultation with the individual's program committee, the student elects additional courses from those in the course list and from offerings of related departments, such as ocean engineering, in other colleges of the University. Electives serve to strengthen the student's grasp of oceanography and of the sciences basic to oceanography, and are a preparation for individual research. Deficiencies in basic undergraduate science courses must be made up without graduate credit.

There is no general requirement for proficiency in foreign language, but the individual student's major professor may require the demonstration of ability in one or more foreign languages.



Robert D. Ballard, geology of continental margins, volcanic, and hydrothermal processes at the mid-ocean ridge, development of ROV systems

Steven N. Carey, volcanology and marine volcaniclastic sedimentation

Steven D'Hondt, geobiology

Christopher Kincaid, solid earth geophysics

Katie Kelle, igneous geochemistry and crust/mantle evolution

John King, paleomagnetism, rock magnetism, palynology

Rebecca Robinson, geochemistry, paleoceanography

Chris Roman, underwater vehicles, robotics

Yang Shen, marine geophysics, seismology

Arthur Spivack, geochemistry, dynamics and evolution of the chemistry of the ocean atmosphere and sediments


Marine Research Scientists

Dwight Coleman, high resolution marine geophysics for underwater archaeology

Robert Pockalny, tectonics and fault geophysics


Faculty Emeritus

Jean-Guy Schilling, volcanology, isotope and trace element geochemistry, mantle dynamics

Haraldur Sigurdsson, petrology of igneous rocks, ocean ridge and island arc volcanism