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Department of Ocean, Earth & Atmospheric Sciences:Undergraduate Program


Dr. John McConaugha, Advisor

Students in the ocean and earth science program focus on the global systems that control environmental conditions. They also learn to develop solutions to complex environmental problems by working in multidisciplinary teams. All majors in the department complete courses in the basic sciences and mathematics, core courses in earth systems science, and a capstone field research experience. In addition, students complete a suite of specialty courses according to one of the following emphases.

Oceanography Emphasis
The oceanography emphasis is designed for students considering graduate work or employment in the pure and applied fields of oceanography. Students select specialty courses in one of these subdisciplines: biological oceanography, chemical oceanography, or physical oceanography.

Geology Emphasis
The geology emphasis is designed for students with a wide range of professional goals in the sciences, engineering, business, and the arts. Students considering graduate work or employment in pure and applied fields of geology, including environmental geology, geological oceanography, hydrogeology, geophysics, and geochemistry, should build their backgrounds to support certification as a professional geologist.

Earth Science Education Emphasis
The earth science education endorsement option is designed for students preparing to teach earth science in secondary schools. This program meets the requirements for teacher licensure in Virginia.

More information HERE

Additional information contact:

Dr. John McConaugha - Associate Professor & Undergraduate Advisor

Email: jmcconau@odu.edu Phone: 757-683-4698

Apply here:




  • Written Communication 6
  • Oral Communication (satisfied by OES 441) 3
  • Mathematics (requires MATH211 or higher) 3
  • Language and Culture0-6
  • Information Literacy and Research(requires CS121G or higher; satisfied by ECI 304 for Earth Science Education track) 3
  • Human Creativity3
  • Interpreting the Past 3
  • Literature 3
  • Human Behavior 3
  • Philosophy and Ethics 3
  • Nature of Science (CHEM 121-123 required). 8
  • Additionally, 3-4 credit hours of Natural Science and Technology are met in the major.
  • Impact of Technology 3

Students must select one of the following 5 options:

  • Biological Oceanography Emphasis

-Curriculum Sheet

  • Chemical Oceanography Emphasis

-Curriculum Sheet

  • Physical Oceanography Emphasis

-Curriculum Sheet

  • Geology Emphasis

-Curriculum Sheet

  • Earth Science Education Emphasis

-Curriculum Sheet