Graduate Certificate Program Hydrogeology

Two researchers taking a water sample in a bog

Hydrogeology Graduate Certificate Overview

The Graduate Certificate in Hydrogeology provides practicing geologists an opportunity to upgrade their hydrogeology credentials while continuing to hold full-time jobs.

Degree Details

  • GC
    Graduate Certificate
    On campus
    Total Credits
    Start Term

Hydrogeology Graduate Certificate: Why PSU?

Join our team of expert scientists right at the center of a geological paradise that will get into the field and into Portland’s science community. Our experienced faculty takes pride in providing you with quality education and mentoring that prepares you for a successful career in the geosciences.

Our location in Portland, midway between the coast and the Cascade Range, offers you unmatched opportunities to study geology, from extinct and active volcanoes to landslides, the Columbia River flood basalts, glaciers atop Mount Hood, and subduction-related events along the coast.

Our faculty excel at both teaching and research, with areas of expertise that include geochemistry and petrology, geophysics, geoscience education, hydrogeology, quaternary geology and geomorphology, urban geology, and geologic hazards, tectonics, and planetary science.

With specialized studies in hydrogeology, geomicrobiology, environmental geology, engineering geology, geomechanics, glaciology, and applied stratigraphy, you can branch out or deepen your knowledge in an area that best fits your interests and career goals.

You will also have opportunities to work closely with faculty in their research labs and on projects with local businesses, government, and regional universities.

Our student clubs, including Portland State's chapters of the Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists and the Association of Petroleum Geologists, provide you with opportunities to network with professionals and learn about the work being done in the field.

What can I do with a graduate certificate in Hydrogeology?

This Certificate is designed for professionals and students interested in the field of hydrogeology. It can represent a portion of a professional geologist’s recognized training, as well as a portion of the background needed by registered geologists in the state of Oregon. Practicing geologists can use this Certificate, which indicates added skills and background, for professional development. This Certificate program also may be used toward a graduate degree.

Relationship to PSU Graduate Programs

Courses completed for this Graduate Certificate may be applied toward graduate degrees at PSU provided they meet the appropriate standards for use in the degree, including acceptable grades and completion within seven years of the master’s degree award.

Course Requirements

Students will take 4 courses total, choosing 1 course (4 credits) from each of the following 4 sections (16 credits total):

Section 1)

  • G543 Ground Water Geology (Required)

Section 2)

  • G650 Research Methods I - Literature Review (Reading)
  • G651 Research Methods II - Scientific/Technical Writing
  • G523 Statistics and Data Analysis in the Geosciences

Section 3)

  • G524 Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
  • G525 Field GIS
  • G548 Chemical Hydrogeology
  • G561 Environmental Geology
  • G580 Basin Analysis
  • G581 Field Geology

Section 4)

  • CE566 Environmental Data Analysis
  • CE565 Watershed Hydrology
  • CE568 Advanced Methods in Hydrologic System Analysis
  • CE571 Subsurface Contaminant Transport
  • CE572 Environmental Fluid Mechanical Transport
  • CE573 Numerical Methods in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering
  • CE576 Environmental Fluid Mechanics
  • CE578 Water Quality Modeling
  • CE579 Fate and Transport of Toxins in the Env
  • CE580 Chemistry of Env Toxins
  • CE585 Environmental Cleanup and Restoration
  • CE586 Environmental Chemistry
  • CE587 Aquatic Chemistry
  • CE589 Advanced Environmental Fluid Mechanics
  • CE590 Soil and Groundwater Restoration
  • ESM520 Ecological Toxicology
  • ESM525 Watershed Hydrology
  • ESM527 Watershed Biogeochemistry
  • ESM535 Natural Resources Policy and Management
  • ESM552 Env. Regulatory and Non-Regulatory Approaches
  • ESM563 Water Quality Policy and Management
  • ESM566 Environmental Data Analysis
  • ESM567 Multivariate Analysis of Env Data
  • ESM579 Fate and Transport of Toxins in the Env
  • GEOG514 Hydrology
  • GEOG580 Remote Sensing and Image Analysis
  • GEOG593 Digital Terrain Analysis
  • GEOG594 GIS For Water Resources*

*If G524 or G525 is taken toward this certificate then GEOG594 may not be taken from this list to count toward these 4 credits.

Courses must be completed within seven years of the award of the Graduate Certificate, and a cumulative GPA of 3.00 must be attained in all courses to be used for the Certificate. At least two thirds of the credits for the Graduate Certificate, or 15 credits, whichever is larger, are required to be taken at Portland State University.

Required Courses

  • G 543 Groundwater Geology
  • G 548 Chemical Hydrogeology
  • G 501/601 Research: Written Paper


  • G 561 Environmental Geology
  • G571 Advanced Engineering Geology
  • GEOG 546 Water Resource Management
  • GEOG 594 GIS for Water Resources
  • CE 570 Groundwater Modeling
  • CE 571 Stochastic Subsurface Hydrology
  • CE 572 Environmental Fluid Mechanics
  • CE 578 Water Quality Modeling
  • ESR 579 Fate and Transport of Toxics in the Environment


Portland State University is fully accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).