Students at NOAA

The University of Maryland offers MS and PhD degrees in atmospheric and oceanic science. Our program is one of the few in the country that provides both excellent academics and proximity to government agencies, creating opportunities for research collaboration and future employment.

Our MS/PhD program is typically for full-time students who work intensively with an advisor within the department to complete a significant research project during the course of their degree. This program requires completing core coursework and passing the department's comprehensive examination process.

There are currently 70 students in the AOSC graduate program, and about 80% are Ph.D. students.

Students from a wide variety of backgrounds are encouraged to apply: We accept students with a bachelor's degree in meteorology, oceanography, physics, chemistry, engineering, mathematics, biology, or other programs with suitable emphasis on science.

The university requires a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 (out of 4.0) for financial aid. Our department offers fellowships, research assistantships or teaching assistantships to the most qualified applicants on the MS/PhD track.



The National Research Council's 2010 ranking of Ph.D. programs places the department firmly in the top ten Earth Science programs nationwide and higher than any other institution on the East Coast.

Students are able to collaborate with and learn from experts from nearby research institutions and government agencies. Professors often invite guest instructors to deliver lectures on the latest techniques, algorithms & model developments.


The Department is particularly strong in Atmospheric Chemistry and Air Pollution, Mesoscale to Global Numerical Weather Prediction, Data Assimilation, Earth Sciences and Climate, Physical Oceanography, Remote Sensing, and Dynamics with Predictability.

These strengths are reinforced by strong collaborations leading to joint research topics with NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Maryland Departments of the Environment and of National Resources, the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) of the National Weather Service, the NOAA Satellite (NESDIS) and Air Research Laboratories, all of which are near the campus.


In addition to our proximity to government research institutions, College Park's location near Washington, D.C. offers the best of both worlds. Our campus provides the benefits ample green space (a sprawling central mall lined with trees and even an eighteen-hole golf course) while the amenities that only a large city can offer (arts, culture, sports, dining) are just a short Metro ride away. Visit the "Where is College Park?" page for more information.


Contact us with questions and comments at: aosc-apply@umd.edu