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Washington and Lee University

Washington and Lee University
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About the Major

The Geology Department offers two degrees, the Bachelor of Science and the Bachelor of Arts. The Geology Department also offers and Honors Program.

In addition, students majoring in geology have opportunities to conduct undergraduate research, study abroad and attend professional meetings.

Bachelor of Arts

A major in geology leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree is recommended for students interested in careers outside of science, including business, law, or policy and requires 36 credits. The same sort of rationale to developing a schedule underlies the B. A. Geology Major program as does the B. S. Geology Major, but more Chemistry and Physics are not required.

BA Degree Requirements

Bachelor of Science

The B.S. in Geology is for students preparing for a career as professional geological scientists in academia, environmental sciences, or the energy and mining industry. In many cases, any of these careers will require graduate work in geology. The B.S. fully prepares students for graduate study.

To qualify for the Bachelor of Science Degree in Geology, a student must:

1) Fulfill all requirements for the B.S. in Geology as described in link below.

BS Degree Requirements

2) Submit a short thesis proposal to the department head by June 1 in the summer after their junior year. The proposal should be 1-2 pages in length and contain the following: a) the identity of the student's thesis advisor, b) a written outline of proposed thesis project, including a plan for completing the work, and c) the student's current overall and major GPA status.

3) Complete their thesis by the end of winter term exam week. Students must also meet any other deadlines provided by their primary advisor. Students must obtain a Satisfactory grade as determined by their primary advisor.

4) Present their thesis work in a public forum (thesis defense) at a time determined by the Geology Department faculty, near the end of winter term of senior year.

5) Pass all written portions, and the oral section of their senior year comprehensive exam* at the Satisfactory level.

Please feel free to contact the Geology Department Head with any questions you have regarding the information above.

* Note that comprehensive exams must be taken, and passed, by all candidates for the BS degree, regardless of Honors status.

Honors Program

To qualify for the Honors Program in Geology, a student must:

1) Fulfill all requirements for the B.S. in Geology as described in link below and have an overall GPA of 3.3 and a Geology major GPA of 3.5.

BS Degree Requirements

2) Submit a short thesis proposal to the department head by June 1 in the summer after their junior year. The proposal should be 1-2 pages in length and contain the following: a) the identity of the student's thesis advisor, b) a written outline of proposed thesis project, including a plan for completing the work, and c) the student's current overall and major GPA status3) Complete their thesis by the end of winter term exam week. Students must also meet any other deadlines provided by their primary advisor. Students must obtain a satisfactory grade as determined by their primary advisor.

3) Complete their thesis by the end of winter term exam week. Students must also meet any other deadlines provided by their primary advisor. Students must obtain an Excellent grade as determined by their primary advisor.

4) Present their thesis work in a public forum (thesis defense) at a time determined by the Geology Department faculty, near the end of winter term of senior year.

5) Pass all written portions, and the oral section of their senior year comprehensive exam at the Excellent level.

Please feel free to contact the Geology Department Head with any questions you have regarding the information above.