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Environmental Sciences Graduate Degree

  • Summer 2019 – Students Dahlia Al-Haleem and Lauren Chaphe finished the Aquatic Environmental MS program in three semesters. They maintained a 3.75 and 4.0 average. Congratulations !!

  • Investigating carbon sources in glacier ecosystems

  • Studying the population structure of sea turtles at crystal river, Florida

  • Biogeochemical studies in the Amazon River Basin

  • Sampling Gulf of Mexico fish for mercury isotope study

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to Apply

Application Deadline:
Fall – April 1st
Spring – October 15th

***Important Notice for Fall 2022:  The university has waived the GRE for MS applicants. ***


The Aquatic Environmental Science (AQES) degree has several tracks leading to a MS degree.

1. A thesis MS program designed to receive undergraduate science majors. The program requires an MS thesis directed by an EOAS faculty member. These students are generally supported but positions are very limited.
2. A non-thesis track program designed to serve working professionals and undergraduate science majors. The program culminates in a capstone project. These students are not generally supported, but there are many spaces available.
3. A Professional Science Master’s degree for students who are looking for a more MBA-like program.This degree is a non-thesis terminal MS degree with a capstone course that will focus on a project or internship.These students are not generally supported, but there are many spaces available.
4. A joint non-thesis AQES graduate pathway with a the law school, JD/MS. These students are not generally supported but, there are many spaces available.

Aquatic Environmental Science|Profesional Science Master’s|Law/Aquatic Environmental Science

Aquatic Environmental Science(AQES)

Degree Requirements
Non-Thesis Degree Requirements
  • Aquatic Science Master’s degree program is a non-thesis program.
  • Students may attend full or part-time
  • University Graduate Bulletin
  • Thirty six semester hours of graduate level coursework is required
  • At least 21 credits for letter grade (A, B, C…).
  • Students must maintain at least a B average
  • Produce and present a synthesis paper on a topic of interest
  • Aquatic Environmental Science Student Guidelines
Thesis Degree Requirements
Admission Requirements:
  • 3.0 or better upper division GPA, and
  • No minimum GRE requirement. However, the average GRE scores (verbal and quantitative) of recently admitted students are above the 60th percentile.

Program Director
Non-Thesis AES program students are advised by the program director. The director offers guidance regarding course enrollment, progress toward degree, as well as capstone topics.

Professional Science Master’s(PSM)


“The Aquatic Environmental Science Professional Masters degree is the first professional track degree in our department. We are excited about this degree and about the professional masters degrees program. These degrees offer students a non-traditional career path in the expanding opportunities in the geosciences. We plan to add professional master’s degrees in geology and meteorology.” — Dr. Lynn Dudley, Former Chair, Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Science.

Students are now able to earn the equivalent of the MBA degree in the sciences with a Professional Science Masters degree.

This innovative program,originally sponsored by Former Dean Nancy Marcus with help from Associate Dean Lois Hawkes and Jennifer Buchanan in the Dean of Faculties office will prepare students for more management-oriented positions. The new major will have increased emphasis on an internship and the students must take 3 “plus” courses. These will be business, project management and communication courses.

The PSM is an innovative new graduate degree designed to allow students to pursue advanced training in science or mathematics, while simultaneously developing workplace skills highly valued by employers. PSM programs consist of two years of academic training in an emerging or interdisciplinary area, along with a professional component that may include internships and “cross-training” in workplace skills, such as business, communications, and regulatory affairs. All have been devleoped in concert with employers and are designed to dovetail into present and future professional career opportunities.

This program is an adaptation of the Oceanography MS degree within the Department of Earth, Ocean Atmospheric Science. The PSM-AQES degree is a non-thesis terminal MS degree with a capstone course that will focus on a project or internship. This project or internship for the PSM students will be supervised collaboratively by FSU faculty and outside employers. A committee of outside advisors drawn from environmental consulting and engineering firms, state agencies, and centers has been formed. This group will form the basis of these outside employers.

Former Dean Marcus saw a bright future for this new degree, stating: “The Professional Science Masters degree is a nationally recognized degree type that prepares students to be successful in non-academic science sectors of the workplace, e.g. in industry, government, and non-profit organizations. It combines training in a basic science discipline with training in skills in high demand, e.g. communications, teamwork, and management.”

The Professional Masters Degree in Aquatic Environmental Science will serve as a parallel track to the Aquatic Environmental Science (AQES) MS degree.

To quote the FSU Graduate School “The Professional Science Masters (PSM) is equivalent to the MBA for the sciences and designed to integrate studies of natural sciences, mathematics, management and law to better prepare students for professional positions outside academia. This two-year degree includes four key elements: 1) industry advisory board; 2) in-depth study in a science-driven field; 3) industry internship (or project); and 4) professional development courses intended to emphasize written and oral communications, leadership, business, and team-building skills.”

The PSM AQES program is a non-thesis program and students are not generally supported by the department through teaching and research assistantships.

Law/Aquatic Environmental Science

Joint Graduate Pathway Law and Aquatic Environmental Science/Oceanography

The College of Law and Department of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sceince (EOAS) joint graduate pathway in Law and Aquatic Environmental Science, J.D./M.A.E.S., permits students to complete both pathways concurrently after receiving prior written approval from the faculty adviser for each pathway for each program. All applicants must have completed or expected have completed a bachelor’s degree prior to Law School matriculation. All applicants who have taken courses in environmental science, biology, or chemistry will be more competitive for admission into the joint pathway.

Students who are applying for admission into the joint pathway, prior to their first year of Law School, will need to apply to each program separately. Additionally applicants are responsible for informing both departments of their desire to pursue a joint pathway. Applicants for the College of Law apply at applicants for the M.A.E.S program apply through the Florida State University graduate application portal at Upon admission to both programs, the students should immediately submit a letter of intent and a complete joint pathway application to the Admissions Office of the College of Law.

Students can also begin their study at the College of Law, and then apply for both the M.A.E.S program and the joint the way once enrolled for their first year in the Law program. Upon admission, they may concurrently take courses in both Law and aquatic environmental science. applicants desiring pursue the joint pathway in this fashion must submit all necessary documentation and the joint pathway application to the Admissions Office of the College of Law by May 15th of  their first year in the Law program.

Applicant should contact the EOAS department directly to obtain the specific information on the necessary GRE requirements. EOAS may waive the GRE requirements based on the applicants LSAT score.

How to Apply
  1. Visit the Florida State University College of Law Office of Admissions to obtain a joint pathway application necessary documents for the department of Earth ocean and atmospheric sciences
  2. Complete the documentation.
  3. Do not send or have documents pertaining to the joint pathway sent to the department of Earth ocean and atmospheric sciences. all documents must be returned to the College of Law Office of Admissions by May 15th
Applicants will need to
  • Provide a completed Joint Pathway Application Form.
  • Have official test scores on file with the Florida State University.
  • Provide a letter of intent explaining their interest in the joint pathway
  • Provide two letters of recommendation. Letters provided during application to Florida State University College of Law are acceptable.

Application Inquries

Application Checklist
Advisor: Jimmy Pastrano
(EOAS 3008C)
Phone: (850) 644-7443

University deadlines may differ. Please refer to the FSU Office of Graduate Admissions for University deadlines. You are advised to submit your application and supporting materials at least three months in advance of the semester you wish to enter. You may apply later than these department guidelines, but there are less likely to be openings available.


It is in your best interest to complete your application as early in the admission season as possible.
Incomplete folders are not considered.


In addition, after reviewing the list of faculty inlcuded in our departmental brochure, you may directly contact the faculty member(s) whose research interests most closely parallel your own. The department does not admit students without a faculty sponsor.