The Department of Geosciences strives for an integrated, interdisciplinary study of the whole Earth. The department offers a B.S. undergraduate degree program in Geosciences with emphasis in six different sub-disciplines or concentrations: Professional Geology, Geography, Environmental Geoscience, Broadcast Meteorology, Professional Meteorology, and Geographic Information Systems.
B.S. Professional Geology
This is a study of the physical, biological, and chemical aspects of the Earth. Students are trained to work as geologists in various fields such as oil, mining, environmental consulting companies, as well as local and state government agencies. This curriculum is designed to allow successful performance on the Geologist-In-Training ASBOG examination administered by the Mississippi State Board of Professional Geologists.
This is a study of the distribution of physical features and human interaction with the Earth. Geographers seek to understand why things are located where they are, how people interact with their environment, the movement and changes in physical and cultural phenomena over space and time, and what makes regions distinctive.
B.S. Environmental Geoscience
This is a study of the conservation and management of Earth resources and remediation of natural and human hazards. Students are exposed to a broader cross-section of earth science classes than the Professional Geology program. This track is not designated to fulfill the requirements of the ASBOG examination.
B.S. Broadcast Meteorology
This program focuses on preparing students for a career in radio/television weathercasting. The coursework does not meet the requirements for the American Meteorological Society’s Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval because it lacks some of the math and physics requirements. Individuals can, however, be qualified to earn the National Weather Association Seal of Approval after working in the industry for three years.
B.S. Professional Meteorology
This program focuses on the study of atmospheric processes and climatic variability. Upon completion of the program (operational emphasis), students will have met the coursework requirements for the National Weather Service, the private meteorology sector, or continue their education in graduate school. Students choosing the program with the broadcast emphasis can also work for the National Weather Service and also earn the American Meteorological Society’s Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval.
B.S. Geographic Information Systems
This is a study of spatial analysis and topological relationships of geographic data. Students develop solid skills in remote sensing, cartography, global positioning system, GIS, as well as object-oriented programming and relational-database/geodatabase design.
Geospatial and Remote Sensing Minor
Technology revolutions have driven the expectations of remote sensing and geospatial technologies to an all-time high for a new generation of users across a vast number of disciplines. Advances in computational technologies, visualization products, and sensor technologies have led to the development of unprecedented capabilities in geospatial technologies, such as remote sensing and geographic information systems. With the plethora of remote sensing technologies, the industry is poised to develop operational remote sensing applications that fundamentally impact management of resources. Mississippi State University has developed broad, multi-disciplinary efforts in spatial technologies of many types, and is a leader among universities in education and outreach activities to prepare the next generation for utilizing these technologies. One of the primary limitations in the development of this industry is the need for a better-educated workforce that can understand and utilize the tools of these spatial technologies. Education in geospatial and remote sensing technologies is by nature multi-disciplinary; therefore, a minor program that crosses departmental and college boundaries has been developed to address these needs. This undergraduate minor can thus serve the needs of MSU students with diverse backgrounds from a variety of disciplines. Students may strategically assess which courses within their disciplinary academic program can be used for the minor, thus satisfying the needs of both and maximizing their education experience.
The minor should represent a student’s mastery of basic GIS and Remote Sensing coursework. A minimum of 3 hours of coursework is required in each of these areas:
- Geographic Information Systems
- Remote Sensing
- Advanced Geospatial Technologies