Department of Coastal Sciences

Doctor of Philosophy

Admissions On-line

Graduate education in the Department 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. An undergraduate overall GPA of 3.0 in a science-based major and a minimum GPA of 3.5 on all previous graduate work;
  2. Submission of results of the general section of the Graduate Record Examination;
  3. 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
    coastal.sciences@usm.edu

  4. 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 eighty-four (84) hours beyond a B.S./B.A. degree or a minimum of fifty-four (54) graduate hours beyond the M.S. degree and meet the requirements of the Graduate School of The University of Southern Mississippi.

The following are major additional requirements and milestones for doctoral students:

  1. Chooses a major professor and establishes a four-member graduate advisory committee by the beginning of the third semester;
  2. By the end of the first semester after formation of the advisory committee, the committee meets with the student to consider his/her academic record and to assess the student's suitability to pursue additional graduate studies. This assessment fulfills the requirement for a qualifying examination as determined by the Graduate Council of The University of Southern Mississippi;
  3. Develops a program of study (projection of coursework taken during tenure in Coastal Sciences) in consultation with major professor and advisory committee by the end of the third semester of residency;
  4. Submits a research prospectus approved by the graduate advisory committee by the end of the fourth semester;
  5. Passes an oral and/or written comprehensive examination administered by the advisory committee by the end of the sixth semester in residency which is;
  6. Presents an acceptable copy of the dissertation to the graduate advisory committee at least ten days prior to a dissertation defense at a publicly announced meeting; and
  7. Maintains a 3.0 GPA through the course of study.
Program of Study
Coursework Hours

Students entering with the MS degree are required to complete:

 
  COA 791 Research in Coastal Sciences 16
  COA 898 Dissertation 12
  Research Tools (Determined by major professor and advisory committee) 15
  Electives (Determined by major professor and advisory committee) 11

Students entering with the BS degree are required to complete:

 
  COA 791 Research in Coastal Sciences 28
  COA 898 Dissertation 12
  Research Tools (Determined by major professor and advisory committee) 15
  Electives (Determined by major professor and advisory committee) 29

COA 791 - Research, COA 797 - Independent Study, and COA 898 - Dissertation do not count as electives or as research tools for the Ph.D.

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.

Kalin Lloyd
Coordinator of Graduate Studies
Department of Coastal Sciences
703 East Beach Drive
Ocean Springs, MS 39564
228-872-4201
Kalin.B.Lloyd@usm.edu