Natural Resources and the Environment (M.S.)

Natural Resources and the Environment (M.S.)

student studying in the forest

Why get a master’s degree in natural resources and the environment?

An M.S. in natural resources and the environment will prepare you for advancement or a new career that will allow you to make significant contributions toward local, regional and global challenges surrounding the use, management and conservation of our natural resources. UNH’s interdisciplinary program combines advanced research skills and training in the natural sciences, including ecology and biogeochemistry, with a fundamental understanding of economics, policy and resource management. This degree in natural resources and the environment is well suited to careers in the broad areas of environmental and social science consulting, sustainability, resource management, and environmental regulation, as well as doctoral studies.

Why choose UNH for your degree?

Our internationally recognized faculty and outstanding laboratory facilities make UNH the perfect fit for studies in this growing field. You’ll be able to pursue your research interests by specializing in one of five areas within the degree program: environmental conservation and sustainability, environmental economics, forestry, ecosystem science, or wildlife and conservation biology. Our main campus in Durham is located near the White Mountains and the Atlantic Ocean with access to a diverse array of terrestrial, marine and freshwater field sites. The university, which has earned the Carnegie Classification R1, is ranked among the nation’s highest-performing research universities and brings in more than $110 million in competitive external research funding each year.

Potential career areas

  • Ecological, economic or policy research
  • Environmental consulting
  • Environmental education
  • Land-use planning
  • Parks and recreation management
  • Policy analysis
  • Regulatory agencies
  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Sustainable resource management 
     

Contact

Rebecca Rowe

ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
Phone: (603) 862-2810
Office: Natural Resources & the Environment, James Hall Rm 136, Durham, NH 03824

Wendy Rose

BUSINESS MANAGER II
Phone: (603) 862-3933
Office: Natural Resources & the Environment, James Hall Rm 114, Durham, NH 03824

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Curriculum & Requirements

The Department of Natural Resources and the Environment offers a Master of Science program that provides advanced, research-based study in the ecology, biogeochemistry, economics, policy, and management of vital natural resources, including water, soil, forests, wildlife, and agricultural crops. Students take an interdisciplinary approach to their research and use the tools of the natural and social sciences, including geospatial methods, to make fundamental and significant contributions toward local, regional, and global sustainability.

Students are supported by a highly productive and internationally recognized faculty, outstanding laboratory facilities, and a diversity of accessible terrestrial, marine, and freshwater field sites. Research conducted by faculty and graduate students has resulted in UNH being ranked second of 316 North American institutions in scholarly contributions to the field of ecology.

Possible career trajectories are diverse. Some graduates pursue private sector environmental and social science consulting. Others seek positions in planning, environmental protection, research, or resource management with federal or state agencies (e.g., NOAA, USDA, EPA, NRCS), private industry, or with non-governmental organizations. Graduates from the environmental economics option may also find careers in agribusiness or banking. Graduates may choose to pursue advanced study at the doctoral level.

Students may choose to specify one of five options:

  • Ecosystem Science 
  • Environmental Conservation and Sustainability 
  • Environmental Economics
  • Forestry
  • Wildlife and Conservation Biology

Degree Requirements

An M.S. degree is conferred upon successful completion of a program of not less than 30 credits for natural resources and the environment options: forestry, environmental conservation and sustainability, environmental economics, ecosystem science, and wildlife and conservation biology.

Course Requirements or Equivalents

NR 903Approach to Research2
Choose one of the following additional research methods classes:2
NR 905
Grant Writing
BIOL 902
Writing and Publishing Science
BIOL 950
Scientific Communication
Or an alternative with approval from the Graduate Coordinator
NR 993Natural and Environmental Resources Seminar2
NR 996Natural Resource Education (or Teaching Assistantship) 12
Select one of the following Data Analysis courses: 23-4
ANFS 933
Design, Analysis, and Interpretation of Experiments
BIOL 811
Experimental Design & Analysis
DATA 800
Introduction to Applied Analytic Statistics
ECON 926
Econometrics I
EDUC 904
Qualitative Inquiry in Research
ESCI 801
Quantitative Methods in Earth Sciences
MATH 835
Statistical Methods for Research
MATH 839
Applied Regression Analysis
MATH 840
Design of Experiments I
NR 909
Analysis of Ecological Communities and Complex Data
NR 913
Hierarchical Modeling in Ecology
POLT #905
Introduction to Statistical Analysis
PPOL 908
Quantitative Methods for Policy Research
PSYC 805
Research Methodology and Statistics I
PSYC 907
Research Methods and Statistics III
SOC 901
Sociological Methods I: Intermediate Social Statistics
SOC 903
Sociological Methods III: Advanced Social Statistics
SOC 904
Sociological Methods IV: Qualitative and Historical Research Methods
Select one of the following:
NR 899Master's Thesis 36
NR 998Directed Research 44
1

If you are on a Teaching Assistantship, you are not required to take NR 996,  Natural Resource Education.

2

Or other alternative with approval from the Graduate Coordinator.

3

The thesis option will provide a research-based thesis that is the foundation for a peer-reviewed publication.

4

The directed research option shall consist of a project, designed and conducted by the student, culminating in a scholarly paper or report that is suitable for publication in the respective field of scholarship.

An approved program of study plan is required during the first semester.

Key Learning Objectives:

  • Knowledge and skills outcomes to ensure graduates of the MS program have mastered their discipline: demonstrate knowledge of theory and practice, as well as critical thinking skills and creativity, in conducting ecological, economic, and policy assessment of natural resource and environmental issues and developing solutions to environmental problems;
  • successfully employ the field, laboratory, data analysis, and social science skills necessary to perform research concerning natural resources and their management;
  • design, propose, and execute research addressing fundamental or critical issues in natural resources;
  • contribute to scholarship through publication and presentation of research findings using diverse media.

Professional outcomes to ensure graduates of the MS program successfully compete for jobs in the public and private sectors:

  • demonstrate mastery of theory and empirical knowledge in their research concentration and, more generally, in the relevant natural and/or social;
  • use written and oral skills to communicate effectively with colleagues, stakeholders, and the public;
  • integrate theory and practice to analyze, assess, and solve environmental and social problems and answer questions across diverse scales from local to global;
  • develop and employ interdisciplinary relationships and approaches to addressing environmental issues;
  • interact with professional peers honestly and ethically, and in ways that show cultural sensitivity, inquisitiveness, and propensity for teamwork.

Deadline

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

  • Fall: February 15
  • Spring: December 1
  • Summer: N/A
  • Special: N/A

Application fee: $65

Campus: Durham

New England Regional: MA

Accelerated Masters: Yes (for more details see the accelerated masters information page)

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.

Transcripts from all previous post-secondary institutions must be submitted and applicants must disclose any previous academic or disciplinary sanctions that resulted in their temporary or permanent separation from a previous post-secondary institution. If it is found that previous academic or disciplinary separations were not disclosed, applicants may face denial and admitted students may face dismissal from their academic program.

Letters of recommendation: 3 required

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

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.

Applicants should visit the Natural Resources program website and review the list of faculty in their area of interest. The applicant should contact potential faculty advisors to discuss their interests and determine whether the faculty member(s) may be willing and able to serve as the student’s advisor before applying to the program. See the Natural Resources Faculty List for a current list of faculty.

GRE Optional

The GRE scores are optional, if you wish to provide scores please email the scores directly to the department once you have submitted your application online.

International Applicants

Some academic departments recommend that international applicants, living outside of the United States, and planning on pursuing a research based degree, submit a preapplication form before submitting a full application. If your desired program is not on the form, departments prefer a full application be submitted. Preapplication requests 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.

Explore Program Details

Our graduate advising faculty and their research interests are listed here.

Key Learning Objectives: 

  1. Knowledge and skills outcomes to ensure graduates of the MS program have mastered their discipline:
  • demonstrate knowledge of theory and practice, as well as critical thinking skills and creativity, in conducting ecological, economic, and policy assessment of natural resource and environmental issues and developing solutions to environmental problems;
  • 2) successfully employ the field, laboratory, data analysis, and social science skills necessary to perform research concerning natural resources and their management;
  • 3) design, propose, and execute research addressing fundamental or critical issues in natural resources;
  • 4) contribute to scholarship through publication and presentation of research findings using diverse media.

 

  1. Professional outcomes to ensure graduates of the MS program successfully compete for jobs in the public and private sectors:
  • demonstrate mastery of theory and empirical knowledge in their research concentration and, more generally, in the relevant natural and/or social;
  • use written and oral skills to communicate effectively with colleagues, stakeholders, and the public;
  • integrate theory and practice to analyze, assess, and solve environmental and social problems and answer questions across diverse scales from local to global;
  • develop and employ interdisciplinary relationships and approaches to addressing environmental issues;
  • interact with professional peers honestly and ethically, and in ways that show cultural sensitivity, inquisitiveness, and propensity for teamwork.

 

 

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