Our Curriculum

Meteorology Major – Degree Maps

The program is designed to be completed in four years. Students are encouraged to begin with Calculus I, if they are academically able. The Math department provides a diagnostic test students can take on their own to guide them in choosing an initial math course. It is available here. The results of this test are not binding. Students who have taken the equivalent of Calculus I in high school are encouraged to retake this course at CMU, as this will enhance the likelihood that they will start off with a strong GPA and solid math skills. Students who begin with Precalculus will need to take Calculus II during the summer after the first year in order to graduate in four years. For students beginning with either College Algebra or Intermediate Algebra, five years of study will be required to complete all degree requirements.

Completing these courses in this order would satisfy all requirements for graduation. The Meteorology, Math, and Physics courses must be taken in this order. It is up to you when other Major, University Program, Competency, and BS Plan B requirements are taken. These requirements are described in the rest of this page.

Degree Map (beginning with Calculus I)

Degree Map (beginning with Pre-Calculus)

Meteorology Major – Required Courses and Course Descriptions

This listing does not include the General Education courses required for all majors. For more information on additional degree requirements, please see our official online academic bulletin AND consult with an academic advisor or meteorology professor.

Required Courses (30 hours)

MET 240 Meteorology (3)
Structure of the atmosphere; radiation and global warming; forces causing the wind; moisture, stability, and clouds; thunderstorms and tornadoes; hurricanes and extratropical cyclones. This course is approved for offering in a distance learning format. (University Program Group II-B)

MET 310 Atmospheric Radiation and Thermodynamics (3)
Properties of radiation and radiative transfer in the atmosphere. Thermodynamic properties of dry and moist air. Atmospheric stability. Theory and applications of thermodynamic diagrams. Prerequisites: MET 240 with a grade of C- or better; MTH 133. Pre/Co-requisite: PHY 145.

MET 312 Meteorological Radar and Satellites (3)
Principles of remote sensing of the atmosphere using meteorological radar and satellites. Prerequisite: MET 310 with a grade of C- or better.

MET 320 Cloud Physics (3)
Microphysical processes in warm and cold clouds. Formation and evolution of precipitation in convective and stratiform clouds. Prerequisites: MET 310 with a grade of C- or better; PHY 145; MTH 133.

MET 330 Dynamic Meteorology I (3)
Application of Newton’s laws of motion to various scales of atmospheric phenomena. Vorticity, divergence and vertical motion. Prerequisites: MET 310 with a grade of C- or better; MTH 233; PHY 145. Pre/Co-requisite: MET 340.

MET 335 Dynamic Meteorology II (3)
Quasi-geostrophic theory and its application in weather prediction and diagnosis. Atmospheric waves, baroclinic instability theory. Prerequisite: MET 330 with a grade of C- or better.

MET 340 Synoptic Meteorology I (3)
Analysis of large-scale weather patterns through the application of concepts from physical and dynamical meteorology. Focus on cyclogenesis and frontogenesis. Prerequisites: MET 310 with a grade of C- or better; MTH 233; PHY 145. Pre/Co-requisite(s): MET 330.

MET 345 Synoptic Meteorology II (3)
Advanced analysis of large-scale weather patterns through the application of concepts from physical and dynamical meteorology. Focus on quasi-geostrophic, isentropic, and potential vorticity frameworks. Prerequisite: MET 340 with a grade of C- or better. Pre/Co-requisite: MET 335.

MET 450 Mesoscale Meteorology (3)
Structure and dynamics of atmospheric phenomena on the mesoscale including thunderstorms and mesoscale convective systems. Prerequisite: MET 335

MET 480 Numerical Weather Prediction (3)
Numerical differencing techniques, stability analysis, structure and operation of one to three dimensional weather models, physical parameterizations and their implications. Prerequisites: MET 450, CPS 150 or 180

Additional Requirements I (31 hours)

MTH 132 Calculus I (4)
Limits, continuity, interpretations of the derivative, differentiation of elementary functions, applications of derivatives, antiderivatives, Riemann sums, definite integrals, fundamental theorem of calculus. This course is approved for offering in a distance learning format. Recommended: MTH 106, 107; or MTH 130. (University Program Group II-B)

MTH 133 Calculus II (4)
Techniques of integration, applications of definite integrals, improper integrals, elementary differential equations, infinite series, Taylor series, and polar coordinates. Prerequisite: MTH 132.

MTH 223 Linear Algebra and Matrix Theory (3)
Systems of linear equations, matrices, determinants, vectors, vector spaces, eigenvalues, linear transformations, applications and numerical methods. Prerequisite: MTH 132.

MTH 233 Calculus III (4)
Vectors and surfaces in R3, vector-valued functions, functions of several variables, partial differentiation and some applications, multiple integrals, vector calculus. Prerequisites: MTH 133. Pre/Co-Requisites: MTH 223 or 232.

MTH 334 Differential Equations (3)
Definition and solution of first, second, and higher order differential equations. Prerequisites: MTH 133, MTH 223.

PHY 145 University Physics I (4)
Normally the first physics course for majors and minors. Mechanics of single and many-particle systems, conservation laws, statistical concepts, and gravitational interaction. Pre/Co-Requisite: MTH 132. (University Program Group II-B)

PHY 146 University Physics II (4)
Temperature and thermodynamics, electromagnetic interaction, electrical circuits, electromagnetic radiation, and optics. Not open to those with credit in PHY 131. Prerequisite: PHY 145. Pre/Co-requisite: MTH 133.

PHY 175 University Physics Laboratory I (1)
Laboratory experience for PHY 145. Introduction to experimental techniques and the treatment of experimental data. Satisfies University Program Group II laboratory requirement. Pre/Co-Requisite: PHY 145. (University Program Group II-B)

PHY 176 University Physics Laboratory II (1)
Laboratory experience for PHY 146. Introduction to electrical measurements and instrumentation. Introduction to techniques of optical measurements. Prerequisite: PHY 175. Pre/Co-Requisite: PHY 146.

STA 382 Elementary Statistical Analysis (3)
An introduction to statistical analysis. Topics will include descriptive statistics, probability, sampling distributions, statistical inference, and regression. Greater emphasis than in STA 282 will be placed on probability theory and probability distribution. Credit may not be earned in both STA 282 and STA 382. Prerequisite: MTH 130 or 132 or 133.

Additional Requirements II (2-3 hours)

Select one of the following:

CPS 150 FORTRAN Programming (3)
Algorithms, programs, and computers. Computer solution of several numerical and nonnumerical problems. Does not count toward a major or minor in CPS. Prerequisites: One of: MTH 106, 107, 130, 132.

CPS 180 Principles of Computer Programming (3)
Algorithm development and problem solving methods. Design and development of computer programs in a structured programming language. Pre/Co-requisite: One of MTH 130, 132, 133, 217. (University Program Group II-B)

Additional Requirements III (5-8 hours)

Select one of the following options:

Option A

CHM 120 Survey of Chemistry (4)
Elementary concepts in chemistry. For students on curricula needing minimal chemical background or students with no or weak chemistry background who need additional preparation for CHM 131. Cannot be counted on a Chemistry or Biochemistry major or Chemistry minor. This course is approved for offering in a distance learning format. (University Program Group II-B) Recommended: High school Algebra II or MTH 105 (preferably with a B or better).

CHM 127 Introductory Chemistry Laboratory (1)
Elementary laboratory experiments which parallel syllabus in CHM 111 and CHM 120. Recommended for students in dietetics, sports medicine, health education, and elementary/middle school education. Pre/Co-Requisites: CHM 111 or CHM 120. (University Program Group II-B)

Option B

CHM 131 Introduction to Chemistry I (4)
Fundamental concepts of chemistry including stoichiometry, gas laws, thermochemistry, and molecular structure. CHM 131 and 132 are recommended to constitute the standard one-year course for science majors. Recommended: High school Algebra II or MTH 107 (preferably with a B or better); high school chemistry or CHM 120. (University Program Group II-B)

CHM 132 Introduction to Chemistry II (4)
Continuation of CHM 131 including solutions, kinetics, equilibrium, weak acids and bases, thermodynamics, and electrochemistry. Prerequisite: CHM 131. Recommended: a grade of C or better in CHM 131.

General Education Program, Competencies, and BS Plan B Requirements

In addition to the Major Requirements discussed above, students are responsible for satisfying all general education requirements, including courses on the University Program and Core Competency requirements (Freshman and Advanced Composition, Oral English, and Mathematics). Students must earn a minimum GPA of 2.0 on average in their University Program courses in order to graduate. Details on these requirements and how they can be satisfied can be found here.

Lastly, students need to complete additional requirements known as “Plan B” courses in order to receive a Bachelor of Science degree. This amounts to taking 6 hours worth of Social Science courses that are not taken as part of the University Program. Please see the aforementioned webpage here to determine eligible courses.

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