Agricultural Sciences (M.S.)

Agricultural Sciences (M.S.)

Agricultural Science UNH

Why get your master’s degree in agricultural sciences?

An M.S. in agricultural sciences will help you advance your career in an agriculture-related field, whether you’re working in agricultural production, agribusiness, policy areas in the government or nonprofit sectors, education and/or research. Our master’s program focuses on the advanced study of plant and animal agriculture, aquaculture, agro-ecosystems, food production and distribution systems, all crucial aspects of the role agriculture plays in feeding the world. With the growing demand for well-trained agricultural researchers and professionals, a master’s degree in agricultural sciences will help you pursue leadership roles in collaborative and interdisciplinary initiatives that address agricultural issues and opportunities.

Why choose UNH for your degree?

UNH is among the nation’s highest-performing research universities, having earned a Carnegie Classification R1. Our research portfolio brings in more than $110 million in competitive external funding each year. Federal and state funding is available for research on diverse aspects of sustainable agriculture, foods and agricultural sciences. You’ll have the opportunity to partner with state and regional growers and producers and collaborate with leading researchers worldwide. As a graduate student at UNH, you’ll have the opportunity to work in several top-notch teaching and research facilities, including the New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station, one of the university’s largest research organizations.

Potential career areas

  • Agribusiness 
  • Commercial plant/animal production 
  • Crop management consulting 
  • Education 
  • Extension services
  • Farming
  • Food/plant/animal sciences
  • Land-use policy analysis
  • Plant/animal inspection 
  • Plant breeding 
  • Policy making 
  • Research

Contact

Department of Agriculture, Nutrition, and Food Systems
University of New Hampshire
Kendall Hall
129 Main Street
Durham, NH 03824
(603) 862-2130

Curriculum & Requirements

The Master of Science (M.S.) in Agricultural Sciences graduate program offered by the Department of Agriculture, Nutrition, and Food Systems (ANFS) offers a flexible course of study that provides education and research experience in plant and animal agriculture, aquaculture, food systems, and related fields.

Emphasis is placed on acquiring basic and practical knowledge and research experience in one or more of the diverse components of plant and animal agricultural systems including: breeding and genetics, physiology, environmental interactions, organismal health, agroecology, and pathology. Student are exposed to production systems, including field based, hydroponics, and aquaculture, as well as post-harvest practices. The agricultural sciences graduate programs prepare students to become highly knowledgeable and competent in professional fields related to agriculture, and leaders in collaborative and interdisciplinary efforts to address local, regional, national and/or global agricultural issues.

With a M.S. in Agricultural Sciences, students are prepared to pursue careers in college teaching and research positions in industry and government. Students may work in plant and animal agriculture, aquaculture, food production and distribution systems, teaching, public service, research in federal, state, and private organizations, or related fields.

The M.S. program is thesis-based, with the expectation of providing substantial research experience and the opportunity to publish new knowledge in the field of interest.

Master of Science (M.S.) in Agriculture Sciences students plan a program of study in conjunction with their advisor and Master’s Thesis Committee, including required courses and competencies. A minimum of 30 credits, including 6-10 research credits (ANFS 899 Master's Thesis), are required.  A thesis proposal is developed within the first year for approval by the thesis committee. All M.S. students must write a thesis which must be accepted by the advisor(s), committee members, and the Graduate School. The degree is completed when the student has completed the required coursework, presented and passed a thesis defense, and the thesis is approved by the Master’s Thesis Committee and accepted by the Graduate School.

Up to 8 credits of graduate credit from another institution may be transferred, provided the credits were not counted toward another degree, and the course grade was a B or higher. Petitions requesting transfer credit must be supported by the advisor and graduate committee and approved by the UNH Graduate School.

Core Course Requirements
ANFS 901Introduction to Agriculture, Nutrition, and Food Systems Graduate Studies 11
ANFS 997Agriculture, Nutrition, and Food Systems Seminar 21
Competency Requirements 3
In addition to the core requirements, students will be expected to demonstrate competency in areas of experimental design and analysis, and in scientific writing and communication. Supportive course offerings include:
BIOL 902Writing and Publishing Science2
ANFS 933Design, Analysis, and Interpretation of Experiments4

Each student, in consultation with their graduate committee, will define one or more areas of informal specialization, and will take additional courses appropriate for their area(s) of specialization.

Additional Information/Requirements

All students in the Agricultural Sciences Graduate Programs are expected to present their research in ANFS departmental seminar at least twice (including the defense seminar). Students are also encouraged to present at professional conferences and acquire teaching and/or mentoring experience.

Annual Evaluation

The annual evaluation of graduate students ensures that students receive the mentorship they deserve and are making progress toward completion of their degrees. The annual evaluation of graduate students consists of a collaborative effort between faculty adviser and student to:

  • Complete a self-assessment;
  • Present a professional quality CV suitable for awards, job applications, and internships;
  • Produce a narrative of service or other activities not captured on a CV;
  • Develop annual goals.

Deadlines

Applications must be completed by the following deadlines in order to be reviewed for admission:

  • Fall: Jan. 15 (priority*), Aug. 1 (final) *Applications completed by Jan. 15 will be given priority consideration for admission and financial support. Applications completed after Jan. 15 will be considered based on openings and funding.
  • Spring: Oct. 15 (final)
  • Summer: N/A
  • Special: N/A

Application fee: $65

Campus: Durham

New England Regional: MA RI

Accelerated Masters Eligible: No

New Hampshire Residents

Students claiming in-state residency must also submit a Proof of Residence form. This form is not required to complete your application, but you will need to submit it after you are offered admission or you will not be able to register for classes.

Transcripts

If you attended UNH after September 1, 1991, and have indicated so on your online application, we will retrieve your transcript internally; this includes UNH-Durham, UNH-Manchester and UNH Non-Degree work. 

If you did not attend UNH, or attended prior to September 1, 1991, then you must request one official transcript be sent directly to our office from the Registrar's Office of each college/university attended. International transcripts must be translated into English. We accept transcripts both electronically and in hard copy:

  • Electronic Transcripts: Please have your institution send the transcript directly to grad.school@unh.edu. Please note that we can only accept copies sent directly from the institution.
  • Paper Transcripts: Please send hard copies of transcripts to: UNH Graduate School, Thompson Hall- 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824. You may request transcripts be sent to us directly from the institution or you may send them yourself as long as they remain sealed in the original university envelope.

Letters of recommendation: 3 required

Recommendation letters submitted by relatives or friends, as well as letters older than one year, will not be accepted.

Test Scores: GRE Required

GRE required. Request official test scores to be sent directly to the Graduate School by the testing service. Test scores more than five years old are not acceptable. Student copies and photo copies of scores are not considered official. Our CEEB code is 3918.

For general information about test scores, including waiver requests and current COVID related impacts, please visit our Test Scores webpage.

Personal Statement/Essay Questions

Prepare a brief but careful statement regarding:

  1. Reasons you wish to do graduate work in this field, including your immediate and long-range objectives.
  2. Your specific research or professional interest and experiences in this field.

Important Notes

All applicants are encouraged to contact programs directly to discuss program specific application questions.

International Applicants

The University of New Hampshire recommends that international applicants who are living outside of the United States, and are planning on pursuing a research based degree, submit a preapplication form before submitting a full application. Your preapplication request will be carefully reviewed and a decision usually provided within 3 weeks. If your preapplication is approved then it is recommended you then submit a full application. If you are currently living in the United States (on a H1B visa, etc.), or you plan on pursuing a professional master’s degree, then you do not need to submit a preapplication.

Prospective international students are required to submit TOEFL, IELTS, or equivalent examination scores. English Language Exams may be waived if English is your first language. If you wish to request a waiver, then please visit our Test Scores webpage for more information.

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