How long does it take to earn a degree?
Master’s degrees typically take two to two-and-a-half years to complete. The time required to earn a Doctoral degree can vary, but ranges from four to six years.

What is the difference between TAs and RAs?
A graduate teaching assistant (GTA or TA) is provided a tuition waiver and stipend for teaching a course or assisting with a course taught by a professor/instructor.  A graduate research assistant (GRA or RA) is provided a tuition waiver and stipend for working on a research project that is supported by their advisor’s research funding.  Starting graduate school as a TA gives you teaching experience and allows you more time to decide what area of research you are interested in.  The School of Meteorology will initially offer TA positions and a student could remain a TA during their entire MS program as long as they find a project to work on that culminates their interest along with a faculty member that has a project but without funding.  The TA option is an excellent opportunity and often students are admitted as a TA and then transition to an RA.  Being a full-time TA does require additional responsibilities with teaching and research at the same time.  Starting graduate school as an RA allows you to get started on your research right away which may be preferred.   The School of Meteorology faculty and/or adjunct faculty from affiliated institutions offer RA positions when funding is available.

Whom can I work for as a graduate student?

The School partners with several organizations in the National Weather Center to allow opportunities for students to receive RA offers from research scientists who are employed by entities such as NOAA, CIMMS, etc. and serve as adjunct faculty members within the School. Of course, regular faculty members also serve as advisors for Meteorology graduate students as their funding allows.

Should I visit the campus?
Yes. Visiting OU will give you a chance to meet professors and students. However, a visit is not required. The School of Meteorology is located on the 5th floor of the National Weather Center (NWC). The NWC is home to a unique combination of University, State and Federal organizations that all work in harmony. Students benefit from interacting with world-renowned scientists who are employed by the organizations located within the same building as their classes.

Does the School of Meteorology sponsor conference travel for graduate students? 
Yes – our graduate students are encouraged to attend and present at conferences related to their research.  The School,  faculty, adjuncts, and affiliates strive to support professional travel whenever possible.

When will I receive a decision?
We will notify you if you are accepted or declined admittance into our program. However, if you have applied for Fall enrollment and have not had any communication from our department by late Spring/early Summer, you may want to contact us to inquire about your admission status.  Offer letters may be sent as early as March and as late as June.

What sort of stipends does a GRA or GTA receive?

Stipends  2018-2019

(begin Aug 16, 2018)

(3% increase)

Stipends  2019-2020

(begin Aug 16, 2019)

(3% increase)

Monthly 12-month Monthly 12-month

Level 1 Entry to MS or PhD










Level 2 Completed MS or completed 30 credit hours towards a PhD in Meteorology


















Level 3 Completed the SoM PhD coursework requirement


















Level 4 Passed the General Exam