Bachelor of Science Degree
The department offers the Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts Degree in: Environmental Soil/Water Science, which deals with soil and water in relation to plant growth and environmental quality; a Bachelor of Science in three areas: (1) Plant Science with a horticulture and cropping systems emphasis, which deals with tree fruits, berries, vine fruits, vegetables and ornamental plants or field crops such as forages, grains, corn pasture, etc. (2) Plant Science with a research emphasis, which is designed for students who wish to participate in the development of plant-oriented technologies at any level of employment, and for those who intend to pursue a career in private or public research with requiring graduate degrees, and (3) Residential Landscape Design and Construction, which deals with design, construction, and maintenance of residential and small-scale, commercial landscapes. Each of the emphases within this major has been designed to allow students the flexibility to add courses or a minor to meet their own goals. All courses used to fill major requirements must be taken on an A-B-C-D-F basis. A minimum 2.5 GPA is required for courses used for the major. Transfer students are required to take at least 18 credits of major subject courses in residence at USU. A minor may be earned in Agronomy, Crop Biotechnology, Horticulture, Ornamental Horticulture, Climate Change and Energy, and Soil Science. A minimum of 16 approved credits are required (see lists below). All courses must be taken on an A-B-C-D-F basis and passed with a grade of C- or better. For information about receiving a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree, consult the departmental undergraduate advisor.
The Environmental Soil/Water Science Major is intended to provide each student with a fundamental understanding of the basic sciences and mathematics, as well as a strong background in both soil and water sciences. Preparatory requirements include chemistry, physics, mathematics, biology, geology, and statistics. The core courses for Environmental Soil/Water Science emphasize the interactive soil/water processes in the soil’s plant-rooting zone—from the microscopic to the landscape perspective. From this base, each student can design his or her own program of specialization in one of the many aspects of soil science, water science, or the integration of both soil and water sciences. Students may choose complementary classes in the Soil Emphasis, Water Emphasis, or Plant Emphasis in preparation for a variety of career opportunities. The Environmental Soil/Water Science Major is complementary to existing undergraduate programs at Utah State University in Geology, Environmental Studies, Watershed and Earth Systems, and Environmental Engineering.
The Plant Science Major with the horticuture and croppings systems emphasis is designed for students interested in learning more about applied aspects of crop production in the field, nursery, orchard or greenhouse. It also applies to management of plants in the golf course, botanical garden, campus, or other amenity landscapes. Some courses emphasize techniques and systems in plant production/management, while others provide students with an understanding of the underlying principles. Course topics include biology, chemistry, and control of insects, diseases and weeds.
The Plant Science Major with the research emphasis primarily prepares students for advanced study in graduate school. The department has an outstanding record of placing students in excellent graduate programs. The research emphasis provides students with a strong scientific base including mathematics, chemistry, physics, soil science, and biology. These are coupled with plant science courses that teach not only the "how" of plant culture, but the underlying "why".
The Residential Landscape Design and Construction (RLDC) Major prepares students for careers in the design, construction, and maintenance of small-scale, residential landscapes. Within these career areas, students will foster sustainable water-conserving landscape development by consumers. The overall curriculum strives to balance both landscape horticulture and landscape design. The core curriculum includes preparatory courses in chemistry, mathematics, biology, design, and graphics. Required program courses emphasize the plant sciences (i.e., plant materials, landscape management, weed control, and turfgrass management), soil sciences (fundamentals of soil science, soil reclamation, and remote sensing), and design/construction (i.e., residential landscape design, irrigation design, bidding and estimating, landscape construction, computer-based design, and water conservation). The RLDC Major is complementary to the existing undergraduate major in Landscape Architecture.