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Academic Resources for Graduate Students

Major Professor

The major Professor is chairman of the student’s Advisory Committee and is the student’s primary source of advice on academic, scientific, and professional matters. The major professor will most likely be involved with a number of graduate students and other matters, so it is incumbent upon the student to use the school’s web site, the Graduate School Bulletin, and the graduate student checklist to ensure adequate progress toward graduation.

The Advisory Committee

An advisory committee must be appointed for all master’s degree students before the end of the first semester and for all PhD students before the end of the first year of residence. The advisory committee is responsible for planning the program of study, approving a thesis or dissertation topic, assisting in direction of the student’s research, participating in all appropriate preliminary and final examinations, and approval of the thesis or dissertation. A student’s advisory committee may not be composed entirely of adjunct faculty and must include at least one regular faculty member not in the student’s program area. The composition of advisory committees varies by degree objectives.

Program of Study

All students seeking a graduate degree must file a program of study. This is a listing of all courses the student is expected to take during the course of his or her degree program. An overall average of 3.0 must be maintained on all courses on the program of study, with no grade below a C on any course. Requirements for course work depend on the specific degree and subject area. The program of study must be approved by the student’s advisory committee, the graduate coordinator, and the dean of the Graduate School. Graduate School policy concerning master’s and PhD programs of study are covered in the Graduate School Bulletin. The program of study may be amended during the course of study because of conflicts, unavailability of courses, or justified changes in the student’s degree objectives. Any changes must be approved by the major professor, graduate coordinator, and the dean of the Graduate School.

The MFR and MNR degrees require a minimum of 33 hours of course work, but do not require a thesis, Scientific Research in Forestry and Natural Resources (FANR 8200), or any specific number of hours in courses open only to graduate students. Applied Research in Forestry and Natural Resources (FANR 9200) is recommended for the MFR or MNR degree, but is optional at the discretion of the Advisory Committee. Of the 33 hours required, 12 must be courses offered in the School of Forestry and Natural Resources and 9 must be outside the School. No graduate student will be allowed more than three hours graduate credit for problems courses under the same professor. Problems courses are those not requiring formal classroom instruction. 
MFR/MNR Checklist

The MS degree requires at least 30 hours of graduate-level courses, at least 12 hours of which must be in courses open only to graduate students.  One hour of Forestry and Natural Resources Seminar Series (FANR 8060) is required and may be counted toward the 12 hours of graduate-only coursework.  No more than two hours of graduate seminar or three hours of problems courses may be used to satisfy the 12-hour requirement; additional hours of seminar or problems courses may be used toward the 30 hours of graduate coursework. Neither Master’s Research (FANR 7000) nor Thesis (FANR 7300) may be used toward the required 12 hours of graduates-only courses. Up to six hours of Master’s Research (FANR 7000) may be applied to the 30-hour total, and three hours of Thesis (FANR 7300) is required in the 30-hour total.

All prospective candidates for the MS degree are required by Warnell to enroll in Scientific Research in Forestry and Natural (FANR 8200). FANR 8200 should be taken during the first year in residence.

Experimental Methods in Forestry and Natural Resources Research (FANR 6750) or Statistical Methods II (STAT 6220) or a higher level statistics course is required of all MS students. This requirement can be satisfied by an equivalent graduate level course taken elsewhere. Biology students are strongly encouraged to enroll in the STAT 6300 series of classes because this series is designed to address experimental design issues relevant to biological research. Majors in Fisheries and Wildlife are required to take one hour of graduate seminar. No graduate student will be allowed more than three hours graduate credit for problems courses under the same professor. Problems courses are those not requiring formal classroom instruction. 
MS Checklist

The PhD degree requires a minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate-level credit which must form a logical whole and consist of at least 16 semester hours of 8000- and 9000-level courses, exclusive of credit in Doctoral Research (FANR 9000), Dissertation (FANR 9300), and independent study courses. The academic course work to be taken by a student enrolled in the PhD program shall be determined by the student's Advisory Committee. To fulfill the residency requirement, 30 consecutive semester hours of full-time course work over a period of not less than two semesters must be completed on campus.

Any PhD student lacking previous substantive research experience must enroll in Scientific Research in Forestry and Natural Resources (FANR 8200) or an equivalent course. The standard for determining adequate previous research experience will be the acceptance for publication of research performed by the student in a refereed scientific journal.

One hour of Forestry and Natural Resources Seminar Series (FANR 8060) is required and may be counted toward the 16 hours of 8000- and 9000-level coursework; however, no more than two hours of graduate seminar may be used to satisfy the 16-hour requirement.  Majors in Fisheries and Wildlife are required to take 1 hour of Graduate Seminar FISH/WILD 8300.  No more than 3 hours of problems courses may be applied to the 16-hour requirement and no more than 3 hours graduate credit is allowed for problems courses under the same professor.  Additional hours of graduate seminar or problems courses may be used toward the 30 hours of graduate coursework with Advisory Committee approval. 

Experimental Methods in Forestry and Natural Resources Research (FANR 6750) or Statistical Methods II (STAT 6220) or a higher level statistics course is required of all PhD students. This requirement can be satisfied by an equivalent graduate level course taken elsewhere. Biology students are strongly encouraged to enroll in the STAT 6300 series of classes because this series is designed to address experimental design issues relevant to biological research.

All prospective candidates for the PhD degree are required by Warnell to enroll in one semester hour of Supervised Professional Practicum in Forestry and Natural Resources (FANR 9990). FANR 9990 provides graduate students with instruction and experience in university-level teaching and includes the presentation of university-level lectures and/or laboratory sections under faculty supervision. The course carries 1 hour credit and may be waived if the student has equivalent course work or experience. The Graduate Coordinator must approve waivers.

A student who bypasses the Master’s degree must complete a minimum of 16 semester hours of 8000- and 9000-level courses, exclusive of credit in Doctoral Research (FANR 9000), Dissertation (FANR 9300), plus an additional 4 semester hours in courses openonly to graduate students. 
PhD Checklist

Prospectus

M.S. and Ph.D. students must submit a written research proposal, approved by their Advisory Committees, before significant research work is undertaken and no later than the end of the first year.

Examinations

The purpose of the written and oral preliminary examinations, in the case of the PhD, and the final oral examination, in the case of the MFR , MS, and PHD, is to provide the candidate with an opportunity to demonstrate knowledge in an oral and written manner, and to insure that the WSFR’s advanced degree holders have attained a level of knowledge and understanding commensurate with their degree status.
Students who fail written or oral examinations will be allowed one re-examination. A minimum of 30 days should elapse between examinations. Upon failure of any part of the PhD preliminary examination, the committee may elect to re-examine the student. This can be done on either the subject areas in which the student performed poorly, or on all subject areas.

 

Graduate Assistantships

Assistantship Eligibility

Degree-seeking students accepted by the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources for Fall and Spring matriculation are automatically considered for a Warnell Assistantship if completed applications are received by the deadlines (see below); however, numbers of assistantships will vary with available funding from year to year. Consideration for Graduate School Assistantships is also automatic but only available to students admitted for Fall matriculation.

Assistantship Types

1. Graduate School Assistantships

Graduate School Assistantships are funded through the UGA Graduate School for the first 5 semesters, including summer. During this time, the recipient is required to assist his or her Major Professor in research. Warnell will support a Master’s student for a maximum of 2 more semesters, including summer, for and a Doctoral student for a maxiumum of 5 more semesters. When on Warnell support, the student will be expected to TA once per academic year.

Competitions for Graduate School Assistantships are administered by the Graduate School under rules published in the Graduate School Bulletin, and only research degrees are eligible for consideration. The Graduate Coordinator selects candidates for the competition from the top applicants to the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources.  Only applications complete by January 1 and recommended for acceptance by faculty will be eligible for consideration.

2. Warnell Assistantships

Warnell assistantships are funded by the School, and are awarded solely on the basis of merit.  The recipient’s duties include assisting faculty members in teaching and research. Standard length of support for a Master’s student is 2 years, and for a Doctoral student is 3 years. Students are obligated to TA one semester per academic year for the duration of departmental support. To be eligible for consideration, applications must be complete by February 1 (for fall admission) and October 1 (for spring admission) and the applicant must be recommended for acceptance by a faculty member.

3. Research Assistantships

Graduate Research assistantships are funded by research grants.  Recipients are selected by the Principal Investigator (PI) of the grant and are required to assist the PI in research.  Research assistantships may be awarded at any time during the year. 

4. Teaching Assistantships

The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs will award a limited number of Teaching Assistantships to students who apply. Students will be notified by email when the online application is available. Teaching Assistantships extend from the first day of class to the last day of final exams for the semester in which the assigned course is taught.All students who wish to gain experience in teaching may apply for a teaching assignment through the online Teaching Assistant application.

5. Other Funding Opportunities

USDA National Needs Graduate Fellowship: Designed to develop competent and capable managers and researchers who can pipeline into successful careers in forest economics, management and planning. 

 

Assistantship Stipend

The assistantship stipend amount depends on the funding source. Graduate School Assistantships and Warnell Graduate Assistantships are granted at 40 percent time (0.4 EFT). Research Assistantship stipends vary depending on the funding source.  Teaching Assistantships are paid at 35 percent time (0.35 EFT).  No graduate student may work more than 50 percent time. Students on assistantship must register for 18 hours of graduate credit per semester, including summer.

 

.33 EFT

.40 EFT

.50 EFT

Stipend — MS & MFR/MNR*

$17,985/yr or $1,498/mo $21,800/yr or $1,816/mo $27,250/yr or $2,270/mo

Stipend — PHD*

$19,437/yr or $1,619/mo

$23,560/yr or $1,963/mo

$29,450/yr or $2,454/mo

Hours of Work Required

13 hrs/week 16 hrs/week 20 hrs/week

Tuition Waiver

YES YES YES

*Rates for FY 2022

 

Assistantship Offer Letters/Renewals

1. Graduate assistants and their supervising professors must give careful attention to the duties listed and dates covered by the original offer letter, which serves as the assistantship contract. Desired alterations of an executed contract to fit contingencies and individual plans will be considered on a case-by-case basis by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.

2. Renewal of an assistantship requires approval by the major professor and requires action by the student and major professor. The appropriate renewal forms will be made available to major professors, who then will complete the budget portion and hand off the form to the student to complete personnel information and indicate acceptance of the renewal.

3. During the contract period, there is no provision for annual leave or vacation. The graduate assistant’s supervisor should be notified as soon as possible of an absence caused by illness. Absence for other reasons must receive prior approval.

 

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