Undergraduate Catalog 2021-2022

Earth Sciences B.S. – Meteorology Emphasis

College of Natural and Health Sciences

Contact: Timothy Grover, Ph.D., Department Chair

Location: Ross Hall 3235

Telephone: 970.351.2647

Website: www.unco.edu/nhs/earth-atmospheric-sciences/

Advising Information:

Students must consult with their assigned major advisor each semester prior to registering.

To find your advisor, log into ursa.unco.edu; go to 'Student' tab and click 'View Student Information' link. If no advisor is listed, contact the major program for advisor information.

The program consists of three parts:

  1. Liberal Arts Curriculum (LAC) Credits
  2. Required Major Credits
  3. University-Wide Credits

Program Description:

The UNC meteorology program has two goals: a strong foundation in the sciences preparing students for graduate school and providing the experience necessary to be ready to take a job in weather forecasting.

The science of meteorology seeks to understand the atmosphere and its phenomena by considering the forces that act on it, the processes that determine its behavior and the interaction between it and the earth beneath. This program provides a broad background in meteorology and stresses practical interpretation of weather data and the importance of meteorology to many aspects of human endeavor.

Graduates of the meteorology program will be prepared for entry-level positions as meteorologists with government agencies and private companies, as weather forecasters with the United States Air Force and as team members with firms concerned with environmental monitoring. Meteorology is also an excellent major for individuals planning careers in either civilian or military aviation. The program provides the background necessary for admission to graduate programs in the atmospheric sciences.

The course requirements assure that our graduates meet all of the requirements for certification with the American Meteorology Society (AMS) and the National Weather Association (NWA).

Program Admission Requirements:

Academic Good Standing

Program Requirements:

  • The course of study for this major, including both required and elective courses, must be developed in consultation with and be approved by the student's academic advisor.
  • A 2.0 grade point average in the courses taken as part of this major is required for graduation. 
  • In accordance with University Policies, coursework earned more than 10 years prior to the date of matriculation to UNC may not be used to satisfy any major or minor requirements.  Any exception to this policy is at the discretion of the academic program.

Degree Requirements — 120 Credits

1. Liberal Arts Curriculum — 31 credits

To complete the degree in 120 credits as outlined, the program recommends the below LAC courses that also count toward the 81 required major credits.

Any additional coursework completed outside of the recommended list below may extend the length of the program of study.

Written Communication — 6 credits

ENG 122 (3) and SCI 291 (3) are recommended to fulfill the Written Communication requirement and will fulfill both LAC and major requirements.

See Written Communication courses

Mathematics — 3 credits

MATH 131 (4) and MATH 132 (4) are recommended to fulfill the Mathematics requirement and will fulfill both LAC and major requirements.

See Mathematics courses

Arts & Humanities, History, Social & Behavioral Sciences, U.S. Multicultural Studies, and International Studies — 15 credits

To complete the LAC in the minimum number of credits, be sure to choose at least one course with an IS designation and one course with an MS designation.  

Select any courses to fulfill this requirement from the currently approved LAC course list.

See Arts & Humanities, History, and Social & Behavioral Sciences courses

Natural & Physical Sciences — 7 credits

CHEM 111 (4), CHEM 111L (1), MET 205 (4) and PHYS 240 (5) are recommended to fulfill Natural & Physical Sciences requirement and will fulfill both LAC and major requirements. 

See Natural & Physical Sciences courses

See Liberal Arts Curriculum

2. Required Major — 81 credits

Take all of the following courses:

CS 120Introduction to Programming


CHEM 111Principles of Chemistry ILAS1


CHEM 111LPrinciples of Chemistry I LaboratoryLAS1LASL


ENG 122College CompositionLAW1


ESCI 330Earth Science Statistical Analysis


ESCI 349Earth Science Professional Seminar


MATH 131Calculus ILAX1


MATH 132Calculus IILAX1


MATH 233Calculus III


MET 205General MeteorologyLAS1LASL


MET 215Intro Meteorological Analysis


MET 221Weather Forecasting Seminar


MET 315Physical Meteorology I


MET 320Physical Meteorology II


MET 401Dynamic Meteorology


MET 402Synoptic Meteorology


MET 420Advanced Weather Prediction


MET 451Climatology


MET 460Mesoscale Meteorology


PHYS 240General Physics ILAS1LASL


PHYS 241General Physics II


SCI 291Scientific WritingLAW2


NOTE: MET 221 must be taken for twice, for a total of 2 credits.

Choose nine credit hours from the following courses:

Must be selected in consultation with the student’s advisor.

MET 452Paleoclimatology


MET 462Extreme Mountain Weather


MET 465Radar and Satellite Meteorology


MET 495Special Topics in Meteorology

1- 4

OCN 301Physical and Chemical Oceanography


ESCI 474Principles of Surface and Groundwater Hydrology


ESCI 491Geoscience Field Issues

1- 6

ESCI 496Earth Science Study Abroad

1- 6

3. University-Wide Credits — 8 credits*

Complete additional credits to achieve the minimum credits needed for any degree at UNC; for this program, that will typically be 8 credits.

*Note: Students who apply the recommended courses to both the liberal arts curriculum and the major requirements will have an increased number of university wide electives to apply to this degree. See your advisor for details.

NOTES: MET 221 must be taken twice, for a total of 2 credits. Federal government requirements for employment as meteorologists and Graduate School admission in the atmospheric sciences usually require MATH 335.