SUNY Oneonta

Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

Professors: Blechman (Chair), Ebert; Associate Professor: Hasbargen, Godek; Assistant Professors: Brunstad, Fall, Karmosky, Sen; Lecturers: Clepper, Kandel


The Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Department has designed its undergraduate offerings to provide 1) preparation for students who are interested in careers in one of the Earth and atmospheric science areas, so that they may compete effectively on the graduate and professional levels with students from other undergraduate departments nationwide; 2) terminal degree programs for students interested in the area as a liberal arts major, but not as a career; and 3) a wide variety of service courses for non-science majors who may be interested in selected topics or portions of the disciplines.


Bachelor of Science


Earth Science



Adolescence Education Earth Science

(Students interested in majoring in Adolescence Education Earth Science should refer to the Education section.)


Earth Science


Water Resources

Requirements for the Major

Earth Science: a broad program that includes eight required courses distributed in the areas of Earth Science, Geology, Meteorology, Oceanography, and Astronomy for a total of 26 s.h. plus selections of two additional courses from these areas, for a total of 32-34 s.h. of credit in the major. It also requires one year each of introductory chemistry and physics, an introductory statistics course, one additional selection in mathematics, and one selection in biology, chemistry, physics, or environmental science. This major is commonly taken as a dual major with Adolescence Education Earth Science.

Geology: 40-44 s.h. of geology courses including an introductory course, earth history, geological data and analysis, paleontology, structural geology, mineralogy, petrology, sedimentary geology, hydrology, and geomorphology. A selection of one additional geology elective for 3-4 s.h. must be taken. A capstone experience is also required. Related work requirements are one year of math, chemistry, and physics. There is a 4-6 s.h. research or field experience capstone.

Meteorology: 38 s.h. of meteorology courses, including introductory meteorology, climatology, physical meteorology, mesoscale meteorology, atmospheric dynamics, remote sensing of the atmosphere, and weather analysis and forecasting. Related work includes 15 s.h. of mathematics, 8 s.h. of physics, 4 s.h. of chemistry, an introductory geology course, and introduction to hydrology or oceanography.

Requirements for the Minors

Earth Science: 12 s.h. including an introductory geology course, introduction to meteorology, introduction to oceanography, introductory astronomy, plus 6-8 s.h. of electives selected from geology, meteorology, earth science or astronomy.

Geology: 10 s.h. including an introductory geology course, and earth history, plus 9-16 s.h. of electives selected from geology, one of which must be tectonics.

Water Resources: 12 s.h. including an introductory geology course, introduction to hydrology, watershed management, applied hydrology, plus 6 s.h. of electives not in student’s major selected from geology, earth science or chemistry.

Supplemental Information

The Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Department is housed in a 65,000 square foot building shared with Biology. The department has exclusive use of five laboratories, three classrooms, and two student computer clusters. Holdings include maps, aerial photos, minerals, rocks, fossils, and weather data.

Geological equipment includes a scanning,electron microscope, a X-ray fluorescence spectrometer, Raman spectrophotometer, petrographic microscopes, hydrologic laboratory and field equipment, geophysical instruments, electromagnetic induction instrument, gravimeter, ground penetrating radar (GPR), surveying equipment, total station, differential GPS, hand-held GPS units, as well as standard thin-section equipment.

Meteorological equipment includes a rooftop weather station that relays weather data to the meteorology laboratory and a computer room for observations, forecasts, and satellite pictures of national and worldwide cloud patterns. A broadcast studio/lab for televised weather forecasts, a portable radiosonde system, and a unique "skylab" augment traditional instruction.

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