Top Schools with Environmental Science Graduate Programs

Read about the top schools that provide environmental science graduate programs. Obtain access to university rankings, degree options and locations, and compare similarities and differences between schools.

School Information

These nationally-ranked schools offer both master's and doctoral degree programs in a wide range of specialties. Most programs are interdisciplinary by nature, and students' work and research can directly influence local, state or federal environmental policy. Learn more about these opportunities.

1. Columbia University in New York, New York

School Highlight: Columbia University was ranked fifth overall in a U.S. News and World Report 2015 best national colleges survey.

The school's environmental science department awards a Ph.D. in earth and environmental sciences and a master's degree in climate and society. Graduate students pursuing environmental studies have access to the department's research branch and the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, as well as several other institutions, which provide research opportunities, resources and archives. The Ph.D. program is a full time, 5-year program with specializations in 12 areas, including atmospheric science, paleontology and ecophysiology. The master's program in climate and society is a 1-year, intensive program that focuses on climate variability and its environmental impact.

2. State University of New York (SUNY) - College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) in Syracuse

School Highlight: SUNY's Syracuse campus was ranked in Mother Nature Network's 10 best environmental programs in the U.S.

It's home to the College of Environmental Science and Forestry, which offers graduate students extensive research opportunities. Students have access to the school's many centers and field stations located around the world, so research is an important part of the program.

The college offers a diverse range of master's and doctoral programs in seven areas of specialty, including a Master of Professional Studies and a Master of Science in environmental studies. Students in either degree program can choose from such specific areas of concentration as fish and wildlife biology and management, environmental physiology, environmental interpretation and ecology.

Top Graduate Programs in Environmental Science

School NameDistinctionLocation
Boston University Students have access to a wide range of facilities through the Earth & Environment Department, including an Experimental Permafrost Laboratory and Soil Hydraulics Facilities. Boston, MA
Brigham Young University Environmental science students can join the Environmental Science Club and also have access to four scientific labs. Provo, UT
Brown University Brown tied for 16th place on U.S. News & World Report's 2015 listing of best graduate schools offering earth science programs. Providence, RI
Cornell University U.S. News & World Report' ranked Cornell #15 on its list of best value schools in 2015. Ithaca, NY
Harvard University U.S. News & World Report ranked Harvard #8 among all national universities in 2015. Cambridge, MA
New York UniversityThe department also offers a minor in Animal Studies New York, NY
Ohio State University Students can choose between two programs of study Columbus, OH
Ohio University The second year of two year program is reserved for research and comprehensive examinations Athens, OH

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