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MS Degree Procedures

Navigating MS Graduate Studies and Research


Major Professor

The Major Professor is chair 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 MS Student Checklist to insure adequate progress toward graduation.

Advisory Committee


Due: End of the first semester

  • Composed of the student’s major professor, who serves as chair, and two other faculty members.
  • The major professor must be a member of the Warnell faculty (no adjunct members may serve), and must be working in the student’s study area.
  • The major professor and at least one other member of the committee must be members of the Graduate Faculty. If more than three members are appointed, a majority of the committee must be members of the Graduate Faculty.
  • Of the two additional members of the committee, one must work in a study area outside the student’s area of concentration. The outside representative may be from another school or college of the University
  • All committee members must hold the rank of assistant professor or above, or the equivalent.

Program of Study


Due: End of the first semester

  • Requires 30 hours of graduate credit
    • 3 hours must be in Scientific Research in Forestry and Natural Resources (FANR 8200)
    • 3 hours in Master’s Thesis (FANR 7300)
    • Maximum of 6 hours may be Research (FANR 7000)
    • 1 hour of Forestry and Natural Resources Seminar Series (FANR 8060)
  • At least 12 of the 30 hours must be in courses open only to graduate students
    • Excludes credit in Master’s Research (FANR 7000) and Master’s Thesis (FANR 7300)
    • No more than 2 hours of graduate seminar or 3 hours of Problems may count toward the 12 hours
  • Students are allowed no more than 3 hours each of Problems or Applied Research under one faculty member, with no more than a grand total of 6 hours in these courses.
  • Only 6 hours of Master’s Research (FANR 7000) and 3 hours of Master’s Thesis (FANR 7300) can be applied to the 30-hour total on the Program of Study.
  • Warnell skills requirement: Experimental Methods in Forestry and Natural Resources Research (FANR 6750) or Statistical Methods II (STAT 6220) or a higher level statistics course.
  • Fisheries and Wildlife majors only: 1 hour of graduate seminar (e.g., WILD(FISH) 8300, ECOL 8220, CBIO 8490, etc.).

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.

Research Prospectus


Due: End of the first calendar year.

Must submit a written research proposal for approval by the Advisory Committee.

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