Tornado | Degree in Meteorology

If you are interested in pursuing a career as a meteorologist or have a strong interest in weather and climate and their impact on human lives, our major in meteorology and climatology is right for you.

This program meets the American Meteorological Society (AMS) formal qualifications for the job title "meteorologist" and the Federal Civil Service requirements for employment by the National Weather Service.

What You Will Learn

  • weather forecasting – In addition to lecture and class exercises, you can participate in national forecasting competition WxChallenge and our client-based forecasting service METC 426.
  • geographic information systems (GIS) and related technology – This technology is growing rapidly in popularity and is common in meteorology. This includes satellite and radar analysis, remote sensing, and cartography.
  • quantitative data analysis – You’ll gain experience with statistics and mathematical analysis.
  • teamwork – You’ll learn how to work effectively with others through collaborative class projects.


As a Ball State Meteorology and Climatology student, Hope Kleitsch has found a place to pursue her dream. After several years of weather forecasting for NewsLink Indiana, “Waking Up with Cardinal Weather,” and more recently 21 Alive WPTA, it’s easy to say the camera loves her.

Read more about Hope's journey into professional forecasting. 

What It’s Like to Major in Meteorology and Climatology at Ball State 

If your goal is to be a broadcast meteorologist, we have several opportunities to help you. You’ll work with our nationally recognized Department of Telecommunications to get comfortable in front of the camera.

You will also have hands-on broadcast opportunities such as your own spot on student-run TV station Cardinal-Vision 57 or an opportunity to work with east-central Indiana news show NewsLink Indiana.

If you’ve always been fascinated by the work of storm chasers, our storm chasing class gives you practical and on-site experience in this exciting aspect of meteorology.

During the summer, you spend four days in class and about 18 days in the Great Plains chasing storms. On your chase day, you will have a morning meeting with your classmates to determine your destination. As the class progresses, your teacher becomes more like an advisor and chauffeur as your team of students leads the way.

Learn More

Doing research early in your college career is what will set you apart from the competition. We encourage all our students to engage in research as soon as possible. Whether it’s working on an in-class project such as mapmaking or monitoring storms or helping professors with their research, you will get lots of hands-on experience here.

Some projects undergraduate students have been involved in include:

  • Midwestern drought causes and impacts
  • how society copes with hazardous weather events (such as ice storms)
  • client-based forecasting
  • curriculum development and methods of learning
  • cartography

Our Meteorology and Climatology Lab is the focal point for the analysis of real-time meteorological and climatological data. Four televisions run different weather broadcasts to keep you up to date. And we have an archive of local weather records dating back to 1932. 

Our program is big enough for you to get what you need but small enough for you to get to know your faculty and fellow students.

Our faculty members teach all of our classes themselves, not graduate assistants.

Major Requirements

Completing our program will earn you a bachelor of arts or bachelor of science in meteorology and climatology.

This major consists of 84-89 credits, plus the courses you will take as part of the University Core Curriculum. Classes in this major


Total to graduate: 120

  • Major Courses: 84-89
  • University Core Courses: 31-36


A few of the classes you will take include:

  • METC 435 Satellite and Radar Meteorology
  • METC 447 Thermodynamic Meteorology
  • METC 450 Mesoscale Meteorology
  • METC 451 Dynamic Meteorology
  • METC 490 Field Observations of Severe Local Storms

For a complete list of all courses and their descriptions, please see our Course Catalog.

View Catalog

What Can You Do with a Degree in Meteorology and Climatology?

Graduates who have studied meteorology and climatology have found jobs in commercial and government sectors. Many of our alumni have landed jobs with radio and television stations, state emergency management agencies, and private forecasting companies in both the United States and Canada.

Specific job titles our graduates have had include:

Paying for Your Education

Apply to Ball State

Admission to Ball State is selective, and we carefully evaluate all applications on an individual basis. Applying is easy. Use our convenient, comprehensive, and secure online application.

Apply Now


One of the best ways to understand why Ball State stands out is to come see it for yourself. You can schedule a visit through our Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Make sure to tell them you’re interested in our program. Or if you’d like to speak with someone in our department directly by phone or email, please contact us.

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