The MS degree is offered for students motivated toward a management or administrative career in natural resources. The MS may be obtained through either a Plan A (research thesis) or Plan B (nonthesis) program, as described in the School of Graduate Studies Utah State. The Plan A option requires a thesis based on original research conducted by the student. The Plan B option is recommended for professional forestry, rangeland, or wildlife managers who do not desire research training. The PhD degree is intended for students seeking a natural resources research or academic career. Comprehensive exams (both oral and written) are required in the doctoral program.
The minimum requirement for an MS degree is 30 credits, including at least 24 credits in residency and 6 credits of thesis research. The minimum requirement for a PhD degree is 60 approved graduate credits in addition to an MS degree, or 90 approved graduate credits with no MS degree. At least one year (a minimum of 32 credits), including a minimum of two consecutive semesters, of full-time registration must be in residence at USU.
With committee approval, graduate credit may be transferred from accredited graduate schools, provided the minimum residency requirement (including thesis and dissertation credit) at USU is met. Transfer credit, which must not have been used for any other degree, will be shown on official USU transcripts at completion of the degree.