EAS Department Ranked 54th in US News and World Report Survey of Geoscience Departments

Department Maintains Identical Ranking from Previous Year

In the new U.S. News & World Report rankings, the University of Houston’s Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences remained at the number 54 rank in the category of “Best Graduate Earth Sciences Programs.” These rankings, released for the year 2020 in March 2019, are based on expert opinions about program excellence, as well as statistical measurements of a school’s quality of faculty, research and students.


Within the department, students can choose between three separate graduate programs: geology, geophysics and atmospheric sciences. Within these three specializations are a diverse group of faculty with projects ranging from pure academic research on the Earth’s internal structure to more applied research on climate and hydrocarbon exploration.

In the number 54 slot, EAS remains tied with the same geoscience departments as it was in the previous ranking. Of the departments sharing this ranking, EAS is by far the largest as measured by its 32, full-time, tenured faculty and its offerings of the three specialty areas. 

Other geoscience departments sharing the number 54 ranking with UH EAS include:
University of Rhode Island (7 faculty), Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (9 faculty), University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill (10 faculty), Dartmouth College (12 faculty), University of Tennessee - Knoxville (14 faculty), Syracuse University (16 faculty), University of Florida (18 faculty), University of Oklahoma (22 faculty), and University of Kansas (24 faculty).

One year ago, EAS moved from the number 64 ranking to the number 54 ranking. The large, incremental jump in the space of one year reflects the nine other geoscience departments that are indistinguishable to the evaluators at U.S. News and World Report and share the same number 54 ranking.

The 2020 survey includes 118 geoscience departments in the U.S. The top-ranked geoscience department remains unchanged from the 2019 ranking – the California Institute of Technology. 

Rankings of other NSM departments for 2020 include:

  • UH Department of Mathematics: 86
  • UH Department of Chemistry: 88
  • UH Department of Physics: 100
  • UH Department of Computer Sciences: 102
  • UH Department of Biology: 140