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Division of Natural Sciences & MathematicsDepartment of Geography & the Environment

Degree Programs

Geography & the Environment

The Basic Structure

Your program will consist of formal course work and independent study through which you develop and prepare your independent research, i.e. thesis. It is this research component that largely distinguishes your graduate program here. You will work with a faculty advisor and a faculty committee to determine the appropriate course work and nature of the independent study.

Faculty Advisor

Soon after beginning your graduate program, you will need to identify a faculty member who will serve as your advisor. The advisor should be a full-time tenured or tenure-track faculty member in the Geography Department with a research record and interest appropriate to your proposed research area of specialization. The advisor assists you in developing the program of course work, oversees the thesis, maintains your student file and keeps the department chair and director of graduate studies informed of your progress. Faculty Committee

Once you have identified an advisor and a working research topic, you and your advisor should begin to assemble the rest of your faculty committee. The Masters degree candidate's thesis committee is comprised of at least three members: an advisor and two other committee members. All members of the committee must be full-time appointed faculty at DU and have research records appropriate to the student's area of specialization.  One exception can be made in that an adjunct faculty member, post-doctoral appointee, professor from another institution, or another qualified person--including someone without a doctorate but with other appropriate qualifications--can serve as a special committee member.  This exception must be supported by a strong rationale, have the support of the student's unit, and be approved by the Associate Provost for Graduate Studies.  If an exception is requested, a statement of rationale and the proposed special member's CV must accompany the committee proposal form.

The committee should approve your program of study no later than the beginning of the second quarter of your program of study.

Students should refer to the Graduate Policy Manual for more detailed information.