|The School of Science was organized in 1943 according to the provisions of the University Act of 1942, and was authorized to grant the degree of Bachelor of Science in the fields of Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Mathematics, and Physics. A Division of General Studies was set up later, independently, with the purpose of offering a series of introductory or basic courses leading an incoming student to a better understanding of the physical, intellectual, and social world in which we live. The School of Science and the Division of General Studies were fused to form the College of Arts and Sciences of the Mayagüez Campus in 1959.
Graduate instruction at UPRM began in 1957 with the establishment of the Puerto Rico Nuclear Center. The construction of this facility in Mayagüez led to the beginning of graduate studies in the fields of nuclear science and technology, radiological physics and mathematics. At present the College offers graduate instruction leading to the degree of Master of Science in Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Marine Sciences, Mathematics and Physics as well as the Master of Arts in Hispanic Studies and the teaching of English as a second language. In 1972, the College initiated a program leading to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Marine Sciences. The Mayagüez Campus is the only institution in Puerto Rico offering a Ph.D. in this field. The Applied Chemistry Ph.D. program started on 2004. A multidisciplinary doctorate degree in Computer Information Science and Engineeering is offered in collaboration between the Mathematics and the Electric and Computer Engineering Departments.
Depending on individual department regulations, the student may have various options for fulfilling degree requirements. Most departments require a thesis, while some may also offer the option of a project report or grant the degree under a non-thesis option.