M.S., Ph.D. Degrees
Minimum Requirements for Degrees: M.S.: 30 credits; Ph.D.: 18 thesis credits
The field of atmospheric science covers a wide variety of disciplines involving the physical and chemical properties and processes of the atmosphere. Emerging trends in atmospheric science stress the interactions of the atmosphere with other components (i.e. land, sea ice, ocean) in the total earth system.
The UAF Geophysical Institute, the International Arctic Research Center and other university research institutes support active research programs in high-latitude atmospheric science that include faculty from the biology, chemistry, physics and other departments. Current research by atmospheric sciences focuses on: atmospheric chemistry/biogeochemistry, climate modeling, cloud and aerosol physics, mesoscale modeling, numerical weather prediction and aviation weather. In addition, scientists affiliated with the research institutes conduct research on ocean-atmosphere interactions, dynamic meteorology, microclimatology, polar meteorology, radiative transfer, cryosphere-atmosphere interactions and remote sensing.
Graduate students are an integral component of this research, both in the laboratory and the field. Research institutes provide excellent environments for research in atmospheric science as well as interdisciplinary research with scientists in other research areas.
Admission to the Department of Atmospheric Sciences generally requires a degree in a scientific discipline, one year of calculus-based physics, math through differential equations and one semester of chemistry. Since atmospheric science is a highly interdisciplinary field, incoming students' backgrounds vary considerably. Thus, acceptance into the program is made on a case-by-case basis.