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Academic Programs

The Florida State University Biogeochemical Dynamics Program offers both master of science and doctor of philosophy graduate degrees in Biological Science, Biomedical Sciences, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Geological Sciences, and Oceanography. The Biogeochemical Dynamics Program is an interdisciplinary research-oriented, graduate-only program within the FSU College of Arts and Sciences which focuses on environmental biogeochemistry.

Applicants to the Florida State University, Biogeochemical Dynamics Program are encouraged to directly contact faculty members whose research interests and expertise correspond to their own. For additional information on the Florida State University admission process, contact the university online at:

Biogeochemistry Additional Information

The Biogeochemical Dynamics Program is an interdisciplinary research-oriented, graduate-only program within the College of Arts and Sciences. We are investigating important areas in environmental biogeochemistry. For example, the chemical structure of organic nitrogen and phosphorus compounds, and of the organic ligands that react with trace metals and metalloids, controls the environmental reactivity, microbial bioavailability, transport, and fate of these critical elements in aquatic systems. Recent advances in analytical geochemistry at FSU and the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (NHMFL) offer unique capabilities to probe the organic components in aquatic systems with unprecedented detail. The recent development of multi-collector inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometers (MC-ICP-MS) allows the use of trace element isotope variations as natural biogeochemical tracers. Combining these capabilities will allow us, for the first time, to obtain a truly molecular-level understanding of trace element complexation and organo-nutrient speciation and cycling in the environment.

The Florida State University Biogeochemical Dynamics program offers both master of science and doctor of philosophy graduate degrees. No undergraduate major or minor is available.


Applicants to the Biogeochemical Dynamics program must hold, or be a candidate for, a baccalaureate degree from an approved college or university and be in good standing at the school last attended. Applicants will have to meet the GPA, GRE, and TOEFL requirements of the department to which they wish to apply: Biological Science,  Biomedical Sciences, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Geological Sciences, and Oceanography.

A student usually enters the Biogeochemical Dynamics program with a degree in some basic science and should have substantial undergraduate work in at least one of the following areas: biology, chemistry, engineering, geology, mathematics, meteorology, or physics. Applicants for graduate study will select an area of specialization in biogeochemistry. The student's prior training should support the chosen area of specialization.

Master's and Doctoral Degrees

Graduate students working toward a degree in Biogeochemical Dynamics will acquire a basic background in all aspects of biogeochemistry and at the same time develop a high level of excellence in their chosen specialty, demonstrated by performing original research and then submitting a thesis or dissertation. Master's candidates in the thesis program must complete at least 33 semester hours of course work. Doctoral candidates complete 18 semester hours beyond the thesis M.S. degree, with considerable freedom in course load commensurate with their interest and prior training. Graduate students in biogeochemistry are encouraged to take courses outside their main department that supplement offerings in biogeochemistry.

Financial Aid

The majority of biogeochemistry students are supported by grant-related research assistantships. There are also a limited number of departmental teaching assistantships, as well as university fellowships. All applicants will be considered for financial assistance unless they decline consideration. Applicants are encouraged to write directly to any faculty member whose areas of research interest them.

FSU Office of Graduate Studies Graduate Funding Opportunities

Thompson Peterson's Guide to Graduate Study - Financial Aid

Post Doctoral Support

The FSU Biogeochemical Dynamics program has an outstanding group of people working diligently to ensure that a student receives the best education he possibly can. Our professors are making great strides in research, gaining both national and international recognition. Faculty members have been elected as Fellows of prestigious organizations such as the National Academy of Sciences and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Faculty members often chair sessions at scientific conferences, participate in international workshops and seminars, and serve as officers for professional organizations. Their research is reported regularly in scientific journals.

Due to the size of the Biogeochemical Dynamics program, students form a cohesive group and enjoy an important sense of comaraderie among themselves and with the faculty. Through both the structured course work and the informal atmosphere outside of regular classroom teaching, students learn how successful scientists tackle difficult problems on the frontiers of oceanographic understanding.

The staff is hardworking, keeping the program running smoothly.

Graduate Application Info

How to Apply

The application process at FSU is completely online. See the checklist below for required application materials and a link to the online application.

The department admits new students year round, though most of the faculty tend to admit students in spring to begin the following fall.

Department application deadlines for Meteorology are:

  • For Fall admission - January 15th
  • For Spring admission - November 1st


Department application deadlines for Geology are:

  • For Fall admission - January 15th
  • For Spring admission - October 1st

Department application deadlines for all other EOAS programs are:

  • For Fall admission - February 15th
  • For Spring admission - September 15th


University deadlines may differ. Please refer to the FSU Graduate Admissions office 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.

For further information about the university admissions process, visit the FSU Office of Admissions. For general information on funding opportunities, news, and events, degree programs, fee waivers, as well as University contact information, visit the Graduate School website. If you have questions about the Oceanography or Aquatic Environmental Science programs, contact the Academic Coordinator.

If you’re interested in specific courses, use the Course Lookup Form to search the Catalog of future, current, and past courses.

Use the following checklist to ensure you have correctly completed the application process: View/Print an Adobe version of this checklist



US or International On-Line Application
(opens in a separate window)
  • Read the instructions for this form carefully
  • Fill out the form completely
  • The online application system will as you for information that his needed both by our department and by the university, including your Statement of Interest
_____ Statement of Interest
  • State your reasons for choosing our department/area and your academic goals
  • You may wish to include information about your academic background and experience
  • This is part of the online application
_____ $30 Application Fee
  • A check or money order should be made payable to The Florida State University
  • This fee is not optional
  • The Office of Graduate Admissions will not process your application without it
  • The Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Science department has no mechanism by which we can request a waiver or pay the fee for you
_____ Official Test Results
  • As soon as possible, request that your GRE (and TOEFL if international) scores be sent to the university
  • FSU’s code is 5219
  • The Oceanography area’s code is 0508
  • The Geology area’s code is 0504
  • The Meteorology area’s code is 0507
  • International applicants must send TOEFL scores
  • These two requirements cannot be waived, postponed, or dismissed
  • The Office of Admissions will not process your application without them

Two Official Transcripts
  • These documents are requried from every university, college or school you have attended
  • The Office of Graduate Admissions will not accept copies


Three Letters of Recommendation
  • There is no specific form for these letters
  • University letterhead is acceptable
  • They may be mailed through the FSU application system or may be mailed directly to the EOAS Department/Oceanography area



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.