Graduate Programs

Oceanography: Ph.D.


Oceanography program faculty and students conduct research on physical, geological, biological and chemical problems in estuarine, coastal and marine environments. Historically, the program’s focus has been estuarine, coastaland continental shelf studies in the mid-Atlantic region. Our research studies have made the nearby Delaware, Chesapeake and Delmarva coastal bays some of the most extensively studied estuaries in the world. In addition, faculty and students have had increasing interests in issues related to global environmental change in a number of other regions of the world.

Estuarine waters, salt marshes and sediments provide ideal sites for work on the cycling of particulate material, trace metals, nutrients and organic matter. An integrated picture of contrasting estuarine behavior is emerging from studies of circulation, chemistry, sedimentary geology and planktonic biology in these contrasting environments. Faculty and students investigate topics at scales as large as paleohistorical circulation patterns, and as small as chemical cycles in algal mats. Multidisciplinary studies of the hydrology and ecology of intertidal groundwater seepage and the controls of harmful and noxious algal blooms are also explored. Together with the Center for Remote Sensing, faculty and students study the impact of land-use changes on wetlands and estuarine waters and the effects of oceanic circulation on climate. The oceanography program fosters an environment where a diverse faculty and student body work together to understand marine and environmental processes in the interest of solving environmental and societal problems.


Application Deadlines


December 1: Priority consideration for admission and funding

July 1: Final deadline to apply


December 1: Final deadline to apply

UD Tuition

The 2024-2025 UD graduate student tuition rate per credit hour is $1,069.