About the School of Meteorology
The School of Meteorology at the University of Oklahoma is the largest such program in the nation, with more than 250 undergraduate students and approximately 85 graduate students. The School offers studies leading to a Bachelors, Masters and Doctoral degrees in Meteorology. Our program is part of the relatively small College of Atmospheric and Geographic Sciences, so you will have a small college feel within a large department and university atmosphere. We are proud of our award-winning student body, which boasts a long list of accomplishments. Our students frequently bring home the majority of American Meteorological Society awards (more than four times the next closest university over a four-year period) and win other national awards, such as NOAA Hollings scholarships and NSF/NASA fellowships.
Unique aspects of the School of Meteorology include our location in the National Weather Center on the University’s research campus, which benefits students by the close proximity and exposure to the breadth of the atmospheric sciences. Our partners within the National Weather Center and on the research campus include:
i) Mission-oriented research with NOAA’s National Severe Storms Laboratory and the Department of Interior’s South Central Climate Science Center
ii) Operational forecasters with NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center and the local office of the National Service
iii) The Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorology (CIMMS) building research collaboration between NOAA and the university
iv) University Strategic Research organizations, such as the Center for Analysis and Prediction of Storms and the Advanced Radar Research Center
Undergraduates have opportunities to apply for internships and shadowing opportunities with several of these organizations.
To learn about the department’s history, please read about the evolution of the School.
Prepare for a Degree in Meteorology
You can begin preparing to earn a degree in Meteorology in a number of ways:
- Take as many math courses as you can, especially in algebra and calculus. Meteorology majors are required to complete the entire calculus sequence for science majors, as well as Physical Mathematics and a senior-level course in statistics.
- If your school offers them, take Physics courses as well as courses in Computer Science (in particular, programming). A BS degree requiresPhysics for Science & Engineering Majors, along with physics labs and a course in computer programming.
- Take chemistry; the introductory chemistry course at OU is much better received by students with some high school preparation.
- Consider taking AP or concurrent enrollment courses in order to earn college credit. Studies have shown that students who take AP courses (regardless of the subject area), have much more realistic expectations of the amount of work necessary to succeed in courses at a university.
- A Bachelor of Science degree through the College of Atmospheric and Geographic Sciences requires two years of high school foreign language (in the same language, with grades of C or better), or two beginning semesters in a foreign language at the college level.
- Prepare for and take the ACT, SAT, and PSAT exams. Retake these tests if you are unsatisfied with your initial scores.
- Gradually increase your study time; many students study fewer than four hours per week; expect to study at least 15 hours per week to succeed in the meteorology degree program.
Careers in meteorology include weather forecasting, research in federal laboratories, teaching and research in colleges and universities, consulting for government and private industry, and broadcasting to broad audiences. In general, advanced degrees in meteorology lead to a wider range of employment opportunities. Please visit the School of Meteorology job board for more information.