Forestry MS Program

Master’s Graduation Requirements

The master’s degree in forestry is designed for students with an undergraduate degree in forestry or in one of the biological, physical or social sciences basic to forestry. Students with previous professional education in forestry may wish to undertake preliminary preparation for both research and teaching, or may wish to obtain greater depth in a specialized area.

Those without a bachelor’s degree in forestry may wish to further their education in forest science or to attain professional competence by completing course work in forestry.

Work required of students without a forestry degree who want a professional forestry education includes courses in dendrology, utilization of forest resources, resource measurements, forest inventory, forest fire control and use, ecology, silviculture, forest information systems, watershed management, forest management, forest economics, and public resource policy. Some of these courses do not carry graduate credit.

Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant discipline from an accredited institution
  • Undergraduate GPA: 3.2 on a scale of 4.0 in last 60 hours
  • Graduate Record Exam score (GRE): no minimum scores required
  • Minimum TOEFL scores: 550 (paper-based test), 79 (Internet-based test)
  • Experience in research or management of natural resources. Practical skills are strongly considered.

Students whose GPAs do not meet the requirements will be evaluated individually. Applicants will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Degree Requirements

Thesis Option

Course Requirements

  • 30 hours of graduate credit, with at least 15 hours comprised of 8000- or 9000-level courses.
  • Not more than 12 hours of the minimum 30 hours are permitted for research, problems, special investigations and special readings.
  • Students must maintain a GPA of 3.0 (A=4.0) in all course work presented for the degree.
  • A minimum of one credit hour of graduate seminar must be included in each student’s graduate program (For a graduate students emphasizing forestry, Forestry Seminar (FOREST 9087) is the only required course in the graduate student’s program of study).
  • All graduate students are expected to attend all forestry seminars regardless of whether the student is enrolled in the seminar course.
  • Each student’s coursework requirements, including the selection of specific courses, will be listed in the student’s plan of study and approved by their graduate committee.

Thesis Committee

A thesis committee is composed of three members of the MU faculty: a major adviser from the academic program, a second reader from the academic program and an outside reader who is a member of the graduate faculty from a different MU graduate program.

Thesis Requirements

Students with thesis option must

  • submit a plan of study within six month of initial enrollment,
  • present a written proposal of their research or project proposal to be reviewed and approved by members of the students’ Masters Committee within one year of initial enrollment in the emphasis area, students,
  • submit a written thesis or project report following the guidelines specified by the Graduate School. All students must present a public oral defense of their dissertation or project announced at least two weeks prior to the defense date. Electronic media may be used to facilitate the defense for online/distance education students when appropriate.

A master’s thesis shall be completed before the final examination. Thesis requirements and defense are as defined by the MU Graduate School. A final oral examination is given to all candidates before completion of the degree.

Every candidate should review the Dissertation & Thesis Guidelines from the Graduate School and should consult the Emphasis Area Coordinator for academic program style requirements.

Non-thesis Option

None.

Others

Graduate research programs leading to the MS in Natural Resources with an emphasis in Forestry are designed to prepare students for careers in academic institutions, consulting firms, industry, and state and federal agencies.

Forestry graduates interested in research or teaching may concentrate much of their course work in one or more of the related sciences with a thesis appropriate to forestry. Dissertation research may be directed toward the solution of problems faced by the practicing forester or may consist of fundamental investigations pertinent to the solution of such problems.

Specialized graduate education is available in agroforestry, biometrics, community and landscape ecology, economics, entomology, fire ecology, hydrology, geographic information systems, physiological ecology, physiology, policy, silviculture, soils, forest management, stand dynamics, water quality, wood quality and tree-ring analysis.

Students often conduct joint research with natural resource specialists at the Northern Research Station (U.S. Forest Service), the Missouri Department of Conservation, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, the National Park Service, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Students without a Forestry Undergraduate Degree

Those without a baccalaureate degree in forestry may wish to further their education in forest science or to attain professional competence by completing course work in forestry. Work required of students without a forestry degree who want a professional forestry education includes courses in dendrology, utilization of forest resources, resource measurements, forest inventory, forest fire control and use, forest ecology, silviculture, forest information systems, watershed management, forest management, forest economics, and public resource policy. Some of these courses do not carry graduate credit.