Top Wildlife Biology Graduate Programs: List of Schools

Read about highly ranked schools where you can study wildlife biology at the graduate level. See what makes these schools special, and decide if one of them might be right for you.

School Overviews

Wildlife biology applies various disciplines, such as ecology, chemistry and mathematics, to the study of animals and other organisms in their habitats. Graduates of a master's or doctoral program in wildlife biology can work as game wardens, pest control professionals, habitat managers, endangered species specialists, soil conservationists, educators or researchers. The two schools below are recognized for their graduate degree programs in biology, and offer master's and doctoral degree programs that include wildlife biology classes.

1. University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

School Highlight: All accepted graduate students at the University of Minnesota's Department of Natural Resources Science and Management will be considered for financial aid in the form of teaching assistantships and research fellowships.

The University of Minnesota's graduate programs in biology were ranked 34th by U.S. News & World Report in 2014. Wildlife ecology and management is available as a concentration through the natural resources science and management program. The program includes a strong emphasis on the intersection of ecology, forestry, genetics and natural resource policy.

Classes in the Master of Science (M.S.) in Wildlife Ecology and Management program include wildlife handling and immobilization, ornithology, herpetology and Environmental Conflict Management. A Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Wildlife Ecology and Management may appeal to those interested in pursuing research or higher education teaching careers.

2. University of Arizona in Tucson

School Highlight: The National Science Foundation listed the University of Arizona #19 on its 2011 ranking of public universities with more than $625 million in research.

The University of Arizona was ranked 38th among graduate biology programs in 2014 by U.S. News & World Report. Two degrees in wildlife biology are offered by the School of Natural Resources and the Environment. Coursework and research areas for the M.S. in Natural Resources with a concentration in wildlife conservation management involve biogeography, watersheds and rangeland management. The Ph.D. in Natural Resources with a concentration in wildlife conservation and management is offered for those planning a career in wildlife biology research or education at the college level.

Top Wildlife Biology Graduate Programs

College/University Name Distinction Location
Brigham Young University U.S. News & World Report ranked BYU #14 on its list of Best Value Schools in 2015. Provo, UT
Colorado State University The Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology Department has more than 2,400 active alumni working in the natural resources field. Fort Collins, CO
Michigan State University Students in the Department of Fisheries and Wildlife can participate in seven study abroad programs. East Lansing, MI
Texas A & M University The university was ranked #31 on U.S. News & World Report's 2015 list of Best Value Schools. College Station, TX
University of Florida Graduate students can participate in the Wildlife Graduate Student Association. Gainesville, FL
University of Maryland - College Park Students have the opportunity to work with scientists at the Smithsonian Institution, the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. College Park, MD
University of Missouri - Columbia The School of Natural Resources has more than 50 faculty members and several outreach extension facilities. Columbia, MO
University of Tennessee Entrance to the graduate program in Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries is competitive, and students need a faculty advisor to enroll. Knoxville, TN

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