Environment and Resources is a program offering master’s and Ph.D. degrees based on the premise that solutions to environmental challenges require interdisciplinary approaches. Faculty and students are oriented to environmental problems rather than to disciplines. Students are encouraged to explore the specific area that interests them by drawing on the insights and methods of multiple disciplines. The focus is on gaining the knowledge needed to understand the intellectual context of their work and the skills necessary to conduct original research. The program fosters experimentation and innovation, not the mastering of a narrowly defined set of prepackaged competencies. The objective is to produce graduates who are prepared to function comfortably in the complex professional and social communities within which solutions to environmental problems must be found.
The program encourages interdisciplinarity through curriculum requirements and the structure of the student’s faculty advisory committee. Students are required to take some courses in diverse disciplinary topics and other courses that are intended to strengthen problem-solving skills. A thesis (M.S.) or a dissertation (Ph.D.) is required of all students. Each student’s faculty advisory committee must consist of persons who collectively ensure interdisciplinary support and evaluation. Students can pursue interests over the full range of environmental studies from physical or biological science focused projects to those emphasizing the social sciences or humanities including policy, environmental history, community action, or social justice. Students who feel a need to follow a more structured course of study may also pursue certificates in culture, history, and environment ; energy analysis and policy; humans and the global environment; or transportation management and policy. Any bachelor’s degree from an accredited four-year institution may be acceptable.
Generally, all application materials for the Nelson Institute's graduate degree programs must be received by January 15 for admission to the following summer session or fall semester, and by October 15 for admission to the following spring semester. Applicants should check with the institute's Academic Programs Office for relevant deadlines.
Degree-program applicants who wish to be considered for university fellowships should submit all application materials by January 2. Applicants may check with the Academic Programs Office before the deadlines to be sure all materials have arrived.
For more information: Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, Academic Programs Office, 70 Science Hall, 550 North Park Street, Madison WI 53706-1491; 608-262-7996; fax 608-262-2273; firstname.lastname@example.org; nelson.wisc.edu/graduate/environment-and-resources/index.php.
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