Transferring To Our Undergraduate Program
One big thing most of our incoming transfer students are interested in is field experience. And that's hard to miss in our program. We start field experience at the freshman level with Geo 230-Introductory Field Geology and Maps and most of our classes have associated field trips or field work. We regularly run a Spring Break Field Trip as a two-credit course. Geo 429, our Summer Field Course in Southwestern Montana, or a senior research project, is the usual culmination to our undergraduate program. Many of our transfer students come from parts of the country where rocks are either poorly exposed or undeformed and monotonous; that's not the case in the Northern Rocky Mountains. We have well-exposed sections of sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rocks from the Precambrian to present. We also have very modern lab facilities that provide the venue for undergraduate, graduate and faculty teaching and research.
In our undergraduate and graduate programs we get students involved in projects, via classroom experience or research, that start with good experimental design, include some field work, and conclude with lab analysis and/or computer analysis as appropriate. Whether your interests are in traditional field geology,climate change, hydrogeology, environmental geology, geochemistry, geophysics, paleontology, or a combination of those disciplines we have a program that should work for you.
If you intend to transfer to our program there is really nothing special to consider. Call, write, or email the department ahead of time if you have any questions; email any faculty member who seems to do interesting work. When you arrive we'll assign you an advisor from the geosciences faculty who will help you with the ins and outs of UM's requirements. If you are wondering about which courses to finish before transferring to UM the best general advice is to take a look at UM's undergraduate catalog and try to fulfill as many general education requirements and lower division science requirements as you can; that leaves you room for our geosciences courses. If you are transferring in at the junior or senior level keep in mind that the University of Montana requires graduates to have 39 credits of junior and/or senior level coursework; thus you should accumulate upper-division credits.