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California Institute Of Technology (Caltech) Course/Program Name
Application closes on
National :03 Jan 
International :03 Jan 

BS Geophysics

 Course Level
Bachelors / UG
 Type
Full Time

 Duration
4 Years
 Start month
September

 Tuition fee

International
45846 USD
National
45846 USD

Application fee

International 75 USD
National 75 USD
Department
Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences
Scores accepted
TOEFL-IBT (min)110
SAT (avg)1520
ACT (avg)33

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About this course

The GPS undergraduate program is designed to provide its students with a thorough training in the geological and planetary sciences and, whenever possible, to integrate these studies with the core curriculum courses in mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology that all students take during their first years at Caltech.

Active involvement in research, particularly during the summer, is encouraged for all of GPS's undergraduate students. For geologists, that research will include an emphasis on fieldwork, which the division believes provides the kind of firsthand experience with geological phenomena that cannot be fully gained in a classroom or laboratory.

Learning Outcomes in the GPS Division
The expectation for undergraduate students in the earth and planetary sciences in the GPS Division is that they will:

  • have a basic understanding of the relevant scientific principles and observations,
  • have the basic skills in geology, physics, chemistry, or biology to  address problems in this science,
  • be able to communicate  this scientific knowledge to scientists and the public, and
  • have had experience in doing research.

 

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Eligibility Criteria

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Course Modules

Undergraduate Requirements: Geophysics Option

  • Ge 11 ab, Ge 11 d, Ge 109, and a science writing course.1
  • Ge 111 ab
  • Ma 2 and one of: Ma 3, Ge/Ay 117, Ge/ESE 118
  • Ph 2 a or Ph 12 a, Ph 2 b or 12 b, and one of the following: Ph 2 c, Ph 12 c, ME 11 a, Aph 17 a, Ch 21 c, Ch 25.
  • ACM 95 ab
  • 27 units of advanced science courses selected in consultation with adviser and approved by the option representative. Appropriate choices include (but are not limited to): up to 18 units of Me 11and 12, ME 65, 66, AM 125 abc, Ae/Ge/ME 160, Ph 106 abc, MS 115, MS 133, MS/ME/MedE 116.
  • 36 units of geophysics electives (selected in consultation with adviser and approved by the option representative). Appropriate choices include (but are not limited to): up to 9 units of Ge 40 and Ge 41 abc, Ge 161-168, Ge 261, Ge 263, ME/Ge/Ae 266 ab.

For students beginning their junior year, it is possible to complete the requirements for the geophysics option within two years, but there are benefits from starting with Ge 11 abc in the sophomore year.

Passing grades must be earned in a total of 486 units, including courses listed above. Any student whose grade-point average in science and mathematics courses is less than 1.9 at the end of an academic year may be refused permission to register in the geological and planetary science options.

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How to Apply

How to Apply as a First-Year Applicant
If you have not yet earned a high school diploma (this includes students in high school/college dual enrollment programs) or have not enrolled in college courses for credit after graduating from high school, you will be considered as a first-year applicant.

The following sections list everything you will need—both academically and in terms of forms and information—in order to apply to Caltech.

Academic Preparation Checklist
(If you have not taken all the listed courses, you should at least be enrolled in them at the time of your application.)

  • 4 years of math (including calculus)
  • 1 year of physics
  • 1 year of chemistry
  • 3 years of English (4 years recommended)
  • 1 year of U.S. history/government (waived for international students)

Please note that we do not grant credit for AP, IB, A Level, Pre-U, or college courses taken prior to enrollment. Each student accepted to Caltech will take a math and physics placement exam prior to enrolling. Based on the results of these exams, you may place out of courses and be granted credit for those courses.

First-Year Application Checklist

  • Common Application with Caltech Questions or the Coalition Application (available July 2016 for fall 2017 applicants)
  • $75 application fee or fee waiver (Common App waiver or Caltech-specific waiver)
  • SAT with writing or ACT with writing (official scores from testing agency)
  • SAT Subject Test in Mathematics Level 2 (official scores from testing agency)
  • 1 SAT science subject test: biology (ecological), biology (molecular), chemistry, or physics (official scores from testing agency)
  • 1 math or science teacher evaluation
  • 1 humanities or social sciences teacher evaluation
  • Secondary School Report
  • Academic transcripts

Additional Requirements for International First-Year Applicants
You must apply as an international student if you are not a U.S. citizen or if you do not have permanent residency status at the time of submitting an application to Caltech. All of the above checklist items apply to international applicants except where noted; please have all teacher evaluations and course names on transcripts translated into English. In addition, international students should supply the following:

  • TOEFL scores (required if English is not your native language or if you have not studied for the last two years at a high school where English is the language of instruction. The two years of study must be prior to the application deadline). We do not accept the IELTS.
  • International Financial Aid Statement of Intent Form (required of all international applicants). Caltech is need-sensitive in admissions for international students, and this form affirms whether you will apply for financial aid. As an international student, if you plan to apply for financial aid at any time during your undergraduate career here, you must apply for it at the time that you apply for admission. Even if you do not plan to apply for aid, you must complete the form. Please note: International freshman candidates may apply Early Action only if they are not applying for financial aid. International freshman candidates seeking financial assistance must apply Regular Decision.
  • We accept applications from students who have completed the approved curriculum provided by their home countries. These include, but are not limited to, the IGCSE, O, AS, and A Level curriculums; Cambridge Pre-U, AP, IB, and local public options may be considered as satisfying high-school course requirements. The most competitive international applicants whose schools offer the IGSCE curriculums usually present three A Level exams (the physics exam is required) with grades of at least an A or B. Competitive applicants whose schools offer the IB curriculum will have scores of 6 or 7 on their IB exams, including their "predicted" grades.

Check further details on University website

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