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  Dec 18, 2017
 
 
    
2016 - 2017 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Marine Science, MS


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Requirements for the Master of Science degree are listed below.  In addition to completing degree requirements, a student must adhere to a prescribed timeline and document completion of major milestones in the degree program. 


 

Milestone No. of Months for Completion
Major Professor 8
Committee/Research Topic 9
Pre-Qualifying Interview 12
Qualifying Exam/Prospectus Defense 18
Admission to Candidacy 24
Seminar Presentation/Thesis Defense 1-3 months prior to completion of degree requirements
Completion of Degree Requirements 36

 


  1. Major Professor - The student selects a School of Marine Science faculty member as a major professor. read more...  
  2. Advisory Committee - The advisory committee, chosen by the student in consultation with the advisor, consists of at least four members and must be approved by the Associate Dean of Academic Studies before the comprehensive and qualifying exams are scheduled. read more...  
  3. Pre-Qualifying Interview - The student is expected to schedule a meeting early in the program to discuss academic preparation and research ideas with the committee. read more...  
  4. Qualifying Exam and Prospectus Defense - The qualifying examination must be passed and prospectus must be accepted by the student's committee. read more...  
  5. Residency and Enrollment Requirements - Two consecutive semesters, excluding summer sessions, must be spent as a full-time resident student in good academic standing.   read more...  
  6. Required Courses - The SMS core and departmental course requirements must be completed.  read more...  
  7. Admission to Candidacy - A student may be admitted to candidacy when he/she has completed the requirements listed above and has achieved a grade point average of B (3.0) or better. read more...  
  8. Credit Requirements - The degree requires at least 36 credit hours of advanced work. read more...  
  9. Seminar and Defense - The student must present a seminar and successfully defend a thesis.  read more...  
  10. Completion of Degree Requirements - The requirements for the degree, including submission of the approved dissertation must be completed within three years of matriculation.  read more...  

M.S. Bypass Option

A student originally accepted to the M.S. program who clearly demonstrates early potential to successfully conduct Ph.D. level research may petition to bypass the M.S. degree program and proceed directly toward the doctorate. Students interested in the bypass option should file a Notification of Intent to Bypass M.S. Degree form as early as possible and in all cases prior to taking a comprehensive examination at the Ph.D. level, which must be passed by no later than the end of second calendar year following matriculation. A Master's student who plans to petition to bypass the Master's must constitute an examination committee in accordance with the requirements for a Ph.D. program advisory committee prior to the comprehensive exam. Following the successful completion of the comprehensive exam, and by the start of the third calendar year at the latest, the student may submit an Application to Bypass the M.S. Degree to the Academic Status and Degrees Committee.  The application package will include:

  1. An approved Notification of Intent to Bypass M.S. Degree form;
  2. A CV and 1-2 page statement by the student describing the student's achievements and demonstrated potential to conduct independent research;
  3. A 1-2 page statement by the student's advisor describing the student's achievements and demonstrated potential to conduct independent research;
  4. A recommendation by the advisory committee that the student be allowed to bypass the master's degree.

The VIMS Registrar will provide evidence that the student is in good academic standing, has completed the SMS core course requirements for the M.S. degree and successfully completed the comprehensive exam.  Evidence of scholarly potential in the form of independent research, professional presentations, submitted or accepted manuscripts and research proposals will strengthen a student's petition for the bypass. The Academic Status and Degrees Committee will recommend to the Associate Dean of Academic Studies whether or not permission to bypass should be granted. A bypass also represents a change in funding obligations for most students and, for that reason, must be approved by the student's department chair. Appeals of an adverse decision of the Academic Status and Degrees Committee or department chair may be made to the Associate Dean of Academic Studies. In order to apply the doctoral program milestones equitably, the Academic Status and Degrees Committee will determine an "effective completion date" for the doctoral program, which normally will be designated as 72 months from the date of matriculation.