M.S. in Environmental Science & Engineering
A Master of Science degree in Environmental Science and Engineering (ESE) is offered by the Division of Environmental and Biomolecular Systems in close cooperation with the Center for Coastal Margin Observation and Prediction. A M.S. in ESE prepares students for careers in environmental monitoring, restoration, management, and regulation. It also can be useful preparation for higher degrees in the environmental sciences, law, or business.
The ESE curriculum provides a unified and interdisciplinary understanding of natural and engineered environmental systems, with emphasis on aquatic media, including surface waters, soils, sediments, and the subsurface. Coursework addresses scales from molecular to nano, cellular, community, and ecosystem. The program emphasizes fundamental concepts from science and engineering, including chemical equilibrium and kinetics, microbial genomics and proteomics, and computer modeling and simulation.
The curriculum is designed to ensure a common foundation of core concepts and skills, but also to allow considerable flexibility for customization to provide the optimal educational experience for each student. Core concepts and skills are taught through a series of three required core courses, with the remaining coursework consisting of advanced electives, readings groups, and special topics courses selected in consultation with the student's advisory committee.
To provide focus to the student's course of study, and guidance in the selection of courses, the ESE M.S. program is divided into three tracks. The tracks have different required core courses, but they overlap in the selection of elective courses. Complete documentation is available in PDF format under Current Degree Requirements.
- Environmental Science and Engineering
- Environmental and Biomolecular Systems
- Estuarine and Ocean Systems
All three of the ESE M.S. tracks can be obtained with or without a thesis. The non-thesis option may include some non-thesis research or internship credits. The M.S. thesis option requires a written thesis, composed of original research, and an oral defense. Most M.S. students are admitted to non-thesis tracks, but some enter directly into thesis tracks. Non-thesis M.S. students can convert to a thesis track, and M.S. students can be promoted to the Ph.D. program, although the latter requires a formal application. Typical times to complete the M.S. in ESE (for full time students) are 1 academic year for the non-thesis option and 2 years for the thesis option.
Most students accepted into the ESE M.S. program have Bachelors (or equivalent) degrees in the physical or biological sciences, engineering, or related disciplines (e.g., computer science). Prospective students with different backgrounds are encouraged to inquire, if they have professional or other experience that might provide adequate background. Requirements for admission to this program include all the general requirements are described on the Admissions web page.
M.S. students may be full time or part time. To matriculate, students should follow the instructions on the Admissions web page.