Hydrology (M.S.)

Hydrology (M.S.)

frozen river and snow landscape

Why get a master’s degree in hydrology?

Hydrologists find, manage and conserve the water resources needed by society; facilitate the mitigation of natural disasters; and plan for climate change. The demand for skilled geoscientists in the United States and worldwide is expected to double in coming years. Students with a hydrology M.S. are well equipped for jobs in either the public or private sector that require knowledge of hydrologic fluxes, field and laboratory analytical techniques, quantitative and geospatial data analysis, and scientific communication. 

Why choose UNH’s hydrology program?

Hydrology students at UNH gain experimental, numerical and analytical skills in rigorous classes and research projects focused on sites in New England and around the world. The Department of Earth Sciences is one of the key academic centers of UNH’s renowned programs in Earth and environmental sciences, with many students working with faculty in the Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space (EOS), the Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping (CCOM), and the School of Marine Science and Ocean Engineering (SMSOE).

Potential careers areas

  • Academic research 
  • City planning 
  • Computer modeling 
  • Education 
  • Environmental hazard assessment 
  • Flood mapping 
  • Governmental agencies (e.g., EPA, USGS, NOAA) 
  • Natural resource management 
  • Remote sensing 
  • Surveying and cartography 
  • Water resource management

Contact

Department of Earth Sciences
56 College Road
214 James Hall
Durham, NH 03824

P: (603) 862-1718
E: earth.sciences@unh.edu

Curriculum & Requirements

This program is intended for students with an interest in ground- and surface-water hydrology, water quality, quantitative and statistical hydrology, and water resource management. Durham, where the university is located, is situated where the Oyster River enters Great Bay, one of the most important estuaries of the Gulf of Maine. Only ten miles away are the Atlantic beaches and Portsmouth, a deep water harbor.

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
FallCredits
Core Curriculum 1 Course 4
Elective 1 Course 3-4
ESCI 997 Seminar in Earth Sciences 1
 Credits8-9
Spring
Core Curriculum 2 Course 4
Elective 2 Course 3-4
ESCI 998 Proposal Development 1
 Credits8-9
Second Year
Fall
Elective 3 Course 3-4
ESCI 899 Master's Thesis ( or Elective for Directed Research Option) 3-4
 Credits6-8
Spring
Elective 4 Course 3-4
ESCI 899
or ESCI 898
Master's Thesis
or Directed Research
2 or3
 Credits5-7
 Total Credits27-33

Students in the thesis option must satisfactorily complete at least 30 graduate credits, which include the credits accumulated in the core curriculum. Students in this option must complete a 6 credit master's thesis (ESCI 899) and give an oral presentation of the results.

Students in the non-­thesis option must satisfactorily complete at least 34 graduate credits, which includes the core curriculum, a 2­-credit directed research project (ESCI 898 Directed Research), and a written and oral presentation of that research.

Hydrology

The core curriculum for the major in hydrology normally includes:
ESCI 805
Principles of Hydrology
ESCI 810
Groundwater Hydrology
Required Courses:
ESCI 997
Seminar in Earth Sciences (first year)
ESCI 998
Proposal Development (first year)
Select Master's Thesis or Directed Research:
ESCI 899
Master's Thesis
ESCI 898
Directed Research

In each of the options listed above, additional electives are to be selected from 800-­ and 900­-level courses in the department and/or from courses numbered 700 and above in related disciplines outside of the department (e.g., civil and environmental engineering, natural resources, chemistry, mathematics and statistics, and computer science). More detailed information is available from the department.

Deadlines

Applications must be completed by the following deadlines in order to be reviewed for admission:

  • Fall: Jan. 15 (for funding); April 1 (final)
  • Spring: Dec. 1
  • Summer: N/A
  • Special: N/A

Application fee: $65

Campus: Durham

New England Regional: CT ME MA VT

Accelerated Masters: Yes

New Hampshire Residents

Students claiming in-state residency must also submit a Proof of Residence form. This form is not required to complete your application, but you will need to submit it after you are offered admission or you will not be able to register for classes.

Transcripts

If you attended UNH after September 1, 1991, and have indicated so on your online application, we will retrieve your transcript internally; this includes UNH-Durham, UNH-Manchester and UNH Non-Degree work. 

If you did not attend UNH, or attended prior to September 1, 1991, then you must request one official transcript be sent directly to our office from the Registrar's Office of each college/university attended. International transcripts must be translated into English. We accept transcripts both electronically and in hard copy:

  • Electronic Transcripts: Please have your institution send the transcript directly to grad.school@unh.edu. Please note that we can only accept copies sent directly from the institution.
  • Paper Transcripts: Please send hard copies of transcripts to: UNH Graduate School, Thompson Hall- 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824. You may request transcripts be sent to us directly from the institution or you may send them yourself as long as they remain sealed in the original university envelope.

Letters of recommendation: 3 required

Recommendation letters submitted by relatives or friends, as well as letters older than one year, will not be accepted.

Test Scores: GRE Required

GRE required. Request official test scores to be sent directly to the Graduate School by the testing service. Test scores more than five years old are not acceptable. Student copies and photo copies of scores are not considered official. Our CEEB code is 3918.

For general information about test scores required for admission into our programs please visit our Test Scores webpage.

Personal Statement/Essay Questions

Prepare a brief but careful statement regarding:

  1. Reasons you wish to do graduate work in this field, including your immediate and long-range objectives,
  2. Your specific research or professional interest and experiences in this field.

Important Notes

All applicants are encouraged to contact programs directly to discuss program specific application questions.

International Applicants

The University of New Hampshire recommends that international applicants who are living outside of the United States, and are planning on pursuing a research based degree, submit a preapplication form before submitting a full application. Your preapplication request will be carefully reviewed and a decision usually provided within 3 weeks. If your preapplication is approved then it is recommended you then submit a full application. If you are currently living in the United States (on a H1B visa, etc.), or you plan on pursuing a professional master’s degree, then you do not need to submit a preapplication.

Prospective international students are required to submit TOEFL, IELTS, or equivalent examination scores. English Language Exams may be waived if English is your first language. If you wish to request a waiver, then please visit our Test Scores webpage for more information.

Explore Program Details

take the next step

student outside building on campus
LEARN HOW TO APPLY
Students on the lawn at Thompson Hall
SCHEDULE A VISIT
student at career event
REQUEST INFORMATION