Graduate Degree Programs in Sustainability

There are several master's and doctoral degree programs available that focus on the subject of sustainability. Here we discuss a few of these degree options, their common requirements and admission requirements.

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While sustainability is often included in a variety of interdisciplinary graduate programs, such as fields like architecture or engineering, here we explore a few of the different graduate degree programs that focus primarily on sustainability itself. These programs are available at the master's and doctoral degree levels and typically include research and/or hands-on learning experiences. Find out more about a few of the different graduate degree programs in sustainability below.

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Graduate Degree Programs in Sustainability

Master of Science in Sustainability Science

Master of Science (MS) in Sustainability Science degree programs may take as little as 1 year to complete and require a minimum of 33 credits. Some of these programs may include a practicum (internship) experience for hands-on learning and may offer additional concentrations in areas such as environmental quality, urban sustainability, water sustainability and climate change, sustainable agriculture and food systems and renewable energy and efficient design. Core courses for these degree programs may include topics in policy, social systems and ecological systems. These programs may be offered on a full- and part-time basis.

Master of Science in Sustainability Management

MS in Sustainability Management degree programs may also be offered on a full- and part-time basis to allow some flexibility for students. These programs may require 36 credits and be completed in 3 to 9 terms, depending on the full- or part-time format. Students in these programs may be required to complete an applied project during a capstone course for management experience and/or have opportunities for research experience. Some of these programs may require coursework from subjects like sustainable finance, sustainability metrics, energy analysis, decision models, sustainability reporting and sustainability management.

Doctor of Philosophy in Environment and Sustainability

Some Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Environment and Sustainability degree programs may allow students to earn an MS during their studies. At the discretion of faculty, students in the program may gain teaching and/or field experience, but are typically required to complete a dissertation and written/oral examinations. These programs may take anywhere from 15 to 24 quarters to complete. Coursework for doctoral programs also vary based on a students' interests and research, but may include topics in environment and sustainability issues, leaders in sustainability, technical writing, oral presentation and sustainability assessment.

Common Entrance Requirements

Students wishing to apply to graduate degree programs in sustainability generally need to submit the proper applications with their official transcripts, letters of recommendation, a resume or CV and a personal statement. Students applying to master's degree programs need to hold a bachelor's degree, while those applying to a doctoral program may hold a master's and/or a bachelor's degree. Master's degree programs may give students the option to submit GRE scores or not, while doctoral programs may require them. These programs may have a minimum GPA requirement that could range from a 3.0 to a 3.25, depending on the program. Some master's degree programs may include an admissions interview and some doctoral programs may admit students based on the availability of a faculty advisor.

Graduate degree programs in sustainability are available at the master's and doctoral levels and typically culminate in a final capstone course, project or dissertation. These degree programs may have a minimum GPA requirement and usually offer students hands-on learning experiences.

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