Division of Coastal Sciences

Master's of Science

Admissions On-line

Graduate education in the Division of Coastal Sciences is implemented through the relationship between the student and a Major Professor. The Major Professor is the primary mentor, provides office/laboratory space, and aids his or her students in obtaining assistantship funding and other resources necessary to complete their degree program. Therefore, before applying, students are encouraged to contact faculty members with similar interests in order to identify a faculty member willing to act as the Major Professor.

Admission Requirements

Regular admission is based on several criteria, including but not limited to the following:

  1. Submission of complete undergraduate transcripts and the results of the general section of the Graduate Record Examination;
  2. A letter of intent stating interests and career goals as well as three letters of recommendation from qualified individuals. (The essay and letters of recommendation should be sent to the Office of Student Services at GCRL);

    Office of Student Services
    Gulf Coast Research Laboratory
    703 East Beach Drive
    Ocean Springs, MS 39564
    fax: 228-872-4295

  3. A minimum score of 560 on the paper test or 220 on the computer test on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) for applicants whose native language is other than English.

Program Requirements

Students must complete a minimum of thirty (30) graduate hours and meet the requirements of the Graduate School of The University of Southern Mississippi.

The following are major additional requirements and milestones for M.S. students:

  1. Chooses a major professor and establishes a three-member graduate advisory committee by the end of the third semester;
  2. Develops a Program of Study (projection of course work taken during tenure in Coastal Sciences) together with the major professor and advisory committee by the end of the second semester;
  3. Submits a research prospectus to the graduate advisory committee by the end of the third semester;
  4. Passes an oral and/or written comprehensive examination administered by the advisory committee by the end of the third semester; and
  5. Presents an approved thesis to the graduate advisory committee at least ten days prior to a thesis defense at a publicly announced meeting.
Program of Study
Coursework Hours
COA 691 Research in Coastal Sciences 6
COA 698 Thesis 6
Electives (Determined by Major Professor and Advisory Committee) 18*
COA 691 - Research, COA 697 - Independent Study, and COA 698 - Thesis do not count as electives for the M.S.

Students wishing to be considered for graduate assistantships for the academic year must have their completed package to the Graduate School no later than March 1. Applications received after this date will be considered providing space is available or retained for consideration the following next term.