Texas Tech University

Graduate Admissions and Advising

Dr. Jeff Lee
Graduate Advisor: Geography & the Environment

Email: jeff.lee@ttu.edu

Phone: (806) 834-8228

Office: 213 Holden Hall

Department of Geosciences, Mail Stop 1053, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX 79409-1053

Advising Hours: By appointment

Dr. Jeff Lee


Students interested in the M.S. in Geography & the Environment or the Ph.D. in Geosciences (geography track) should register their interest at choosegrad.ttu.edu.  The link provides more information about the graduate program as well as a description of the documents required for preparing an application. Please see our detailed FAQ's for more tips on applying.

Admission to the graduate program in Geography & the Environment is contingent upon:

1) admission by the Graduate School at Texas Tech and

2) admission by the Department of Geosciences.

To submit an application, please visit the Graduate School admissions portal.

APPLY NOW at Prospective Students -
How to Apply: For full consideration, complete applications for Fall semester, including reference letters, should be received by February 1. If you have any questions, please email jeff.lee@ttu.edu. 

Frequently Asked Questions

All Applicants:

Q: Whom do I contact when I have questions?

A: If questions are about the MS or PhD in Geography, contact the graduate advisor. If questions are about the application process, contact the Graduate School. The application is done through the Graduate School, not the Department of Geosciences. Once the application is complete, then the department decides whether to accept the applicant and if departmental funding is to be offered.

Q: How do I apply?

A: Applications are submitted through the Texas Tech Graduate School: https://www.depts.ttu.edu/gradschool/admissions/howtoapply.php

Q: What if problems arise while I am applying?

A: You will need to contact the Graduate School. The Department of Geosciences is not involved in the process of applying.

Q: Are application fee waivers offered?

A: No, we do not waive the application fee, which is charged by the Graduate School, not the Department of Geosciences

Q: Can I apply after the 1 February deadline?

A: Yes, but if you want to be considered for all available funding and scholarship opportunities you must have a complete application by 1 February. Applications received after the deadline are reviewed approximately once per month If you apply after the deadline, it's best to inform the Geography Grad Advisor and your potential mentor.

Q: Do I need to take an English proficiency test?
A: This is a requirement of the Graduate School, not the Department of Geosciences. Information on who needs to take a test and minimum scores needed are found in the “Official Proof of English Proficiency” 


Q: Do I need to contact a potential faculty advisor before applying?

A: This is not required but is recommended.

Q: Is the GRE required?

A: The GRE is optional for applicants.

MS in Geography & Environment

Q: Will I be considered for a teaching assistant position?

A: After the 1 February deadline for complete applications (including letters of recommendation), all applicants will be evaluated, and the faculty will decide whom to offer TA positions based on the number of positions available.

Q: Are research assistant positions available?

A: RA positions come from individual faculty members, not the department. Applicants should contact potential mentors about the possibility of an RA position. Be advised that these are rare for MS students.

PhD in Geosciences, with Emphasis in Geography & Environment

Q: Do I need to contact a potential faculty mentor before applying?

A: It is highly recommended that you have arranged for a faculty mentor before applying. 

Q: What funding opportunities are available?

A: Teaching assistantships in Geography generally are limited to MS students. PhD students who require funding should identify a faculty member with available funding and who is willing to support the student as a research assistant.

Academic Programs

As a discipline, Geography provides a unique framework for understanding our world based on location. Geography is concerned with where things are located, why they are located where they are, and how it all works together to form a tapestry of human and physical landscapes across the surface of the Earth.  The degree program emphasizes coursework in both the social and physical sciences to provide students with a broad understanding of world's physical environment and the human experience in that world. 
Students completing the degree program will have the knowledge, tools, and technical skills necessary to understand and address many of the social and environmental problems facing society and the planet at large. This allows students in geography to pursue their interests in a wide variety of topics including social and cultural change, globalization, urbanization, impacts of climate change, natural resource management, natural hazards, food and water security, resilience, and sustainability.

Both the MS and the PhD degrees carry a STEM CIP code.

Geography & the Environment Master’s Program

Geography & the Environment, M.S.

The 30-hour master's degree has two options: 1) a thesis-based program designed for students who intend to pursue a Ph.D. or research-based career and 2) a non-thesis program intended for students who seek to acquire advanced employment skills. Both programs are designed to provide students with critical thinking skills, specific geographic expertise, spatial analysis techniques, and research experience.


Thesis Option. Students entering the master's program are strongly encouraged to write a thesis. The thesis is an original and significant piece of research. The thesis option requires: GEOG 5309, 5303, 5304, 5340, 5342 + 3 hours elective in GEOG/GIST, 6 hours in the minor or an additional 6 hours in the major, 6 hours of GEOG 6000 (Thesis).


Non-thesis Option. Students entering the master's program may choose to pursue their degree under a non-thesis option. Under this option, a project is assigned to the student according to his/her interests and background and it is designed to demonstrate the student's ability to integrate geographic knowledge and skills. The non-thesis option requires: GEOG 5300, 18 hours in the major (GEOG and GIST courses comprise the major), 6 hours in the minor or an additional 6 hours in the major, 3 hours of GEOG 7000 (for the project).

Geoscience PhD, with an emphasis in Geography & the Environment


Prospective PhD students: The Geography/GIS program typically does not provide teaching assistant positions to PhD students. If you wish to apply for the PhD program with a GEOG/GIST emphasis and you need financial assistance, you should contact individual faculty members to see if there is a possibility of funding, either through research grants or other means.

The Geography & the Environment Program maintains a strong commitment to both teaching and research in the major subfields of the discipline.  Major research areas include, but are not limited to, the following.


About the Geographic Information Science and Technology Graduate Certificate Program

The 12-hour Graduate Certificate in Geographic Information Science and Technology is designed to provide a flexible solution to professionals and recent graduates who would like to further their education in geospatial technology. GIST 3300GIST 5300, or equivalent is required as a prerequisite levelling course. For recent graduates, credit will not be applied toward the graduate certificate for equivalent courses taken at the undergraduate level. For students who have already completed one or more of the core requirements and/or electives at the undergraduate level, the graduate certificate requires 12 additional hours.

Note: Graduate Certificates are separate from MS and PhD programs and require separate bureaucratic actions. Admission to the program requires an application through the Graduate School. In addition, it requires an “Apply to Graduate” form to be submitted early in the semester of graduation.

Contact: Dr. Jeff Lee, 806.834.8228. jeff.lee@ttu.edu