Academic Programs Catalog

College of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Graduate Study

The Department of Community Sustainability offers Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degree programs in Community Sustainability and Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management.

Graduate programs in the Department of Community Sustainability provide students the opportunity to create individualized programs that draw from several complementary areas of scholarship. These areas include: community food and agricultural systems; natural resources and the environment; tourism and recreation systems; education and civic engagement; and international development. Today’s communities face complex problems due to ongoing changes to our environmental, social and agricultural/food systems. To aid in meeting these challenges, students’ programs are designed to provide a thorough grounding in integrative, applied research based on multiple paradigms, disciplines and methods.Master’s and doctoral students in the department may choose either degree.  Masters students in both degrees select either the Plan A (research-based) or Plan B (project-based) degree.  A student may not earn a master's degree in both programs.

Students in the graduate degree programs are eligible for a number of graduate certificates.

Students who are enrolled in Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degree programs in the Department of Community Sustainability may elect specializations in resource economics. For additional information, refer to the statement on Interdepartmental Graduate Specializations in Resource Economics.

Students who are enrolled in Master of Science degree programs in the Department of Community Sustainability may elect a Specialization in Environmental Toxicology.  For additional information, refer to the Graduate Specialization in Environmental Toxicology statement.


Community Sustainability - Master of Science

The Master of Science in Community Sustainability provides students with opportunities to engage in integrated and applied research and acquire professional skills.

In addition to meeting the requirements of the university and of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, students must meet the requirements specified below. Students may not be admitted to both the Master of Science degree in Community Sustainability and the Master of Science degree in Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management.

Admission

Applicants must have completed a bachelor’s degree or comparable degree requirements from an educational institution. Relevant experience and strong academic backgrounds in the natural, physical, or social sciences are encouraged for applicants to the Master of Science in Community Sustainability. All applicants for admission are required to submit scores from the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination. Collateral courses may be required to overcome deficiencies in addition to the requirements for the master’s degree. Collateral course work will not count towards the master’s degree.

Requirements for the Master of Science Degree in Community Sustainability

The student may elect either Plan A (with thesis) or Plan B (without thesis). Plan A emphasizes integrated and applied research and is designed as the foundation for doctoral study. Plan B focuses on the acquisition of well-defined professional skills, appropriate for a terminal degree and for professional employment.

A minimum of 30 credits is required for the degree under Plan A and Plan B. The student’s program of study must be developed in cooperation with and approved by the student’s guidance committee and must include the requirements specified below.

               
Requirements for Plan A and Plan B  
1. Both of the following courses (6 credits):  
  CSUS 800 Foundations of Community Sustainability
3
  CSUS 802 Survey of Research Methods 3
2. A minimum of 15 credits in course work in a focus area selected in consultation with the student’s guidance committee. At least 6 credits of this focus area must be in Community Sustainability courses.  
Additional Requirements for Plan A  
1. A minimum of 3 credits of quantitative or qualitative methods to be selected in consultation with the student’s guidance committee.  
2. A minimum of 6 credits of Community Sustainability 899.  
3. Completion and defense of the master’s thesis.  
Additional Requirements for Plan B  
1. A minimum of 3 credits of a techniques or skill-building course relevant to the student’s academic and career goals, to be selected in consultation with the student’s guidance committee.  
2. Both of the following courses:  
  CSUS 895 Case Studies in Community Sustainability
3
  CSUS 898 Master’s Professional Project 3
3. Completion and defense of a paper based on the master's professional project.  



Community Sustainability - Doctor of Philosophy

The Doctor of Philosophy in Community Sustainability is designed to enable students to generate new knowledge in complementary fields responsive to rapidly changing conditions in our natural environment and agricultural systems.

In addition to meeting the requirements of the university and of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, students must meet the requirements specified below.

Admission

To be admitted to the Doctor of Philosophy degree program in Community Sustainability a student must have completed a master’s degree. Relevant experience and strong academic backgrounds in the natural, physical, or social sciences, including independent research experience, are strongly encouraged. All applicants are required to submit scores from the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination.

Requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Community Sustainability

The student’s program of study must be developed in cooperation with and approved by the student’s guidance committee and must include the requirements specified below.

  1. Complete Community Sustainability 800.
  2. Complete 9 credits of course work in advanced research methods, to be selected in consultation with the student’s guidance committee, including at least 3 credits  respectively in quantitative and qualitative methods.
  3. Complete a minimum of 24 credits of course work in two focus areas. At least  9 credits and at least one course in each focus area must be selected from Community Sustainability courses.
  4. Prepare a comprehensive examination program statement that presents the  student’s learning and professional background and goals, and provides a rationale for the  student’s declared focus areas. This statement is prepared in consultation with the student’s guidance committee and is presented to the full faculty for review.
  5. Pass a comprehensive examination based on the student’s comprehensive examination  program statement.
  6. Complete 24 credits of dissertation research and successfully defend the dissertation. Present the results of the research in a  public seminar during the final oral examination.

All students are encouraged to prepare at least one paper from the dissertation research suitable for submission to a professional and/or refereed academic journal.



Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management - Master of Science

The Master of Science degree in Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management provides students with opportunities to engage in integrated and applied research and to acquire professional skills for the study, management, administration and planning of tourism and protected areas under the overarching concept of community sustainability.

In addition to meeting the requirements of the university and of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, students must meet the requirements specified below. Students may not be admitted to both the Master of Science degree in Community, Agriculture, Recreation and Resource Studies and the Master of Science degree in Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management.

Admission

Applicants must have completed a bachelor’s degree or comparable degree requirements from an educational institution. Relevant experience and strong academic background in the natural, physical, or social sciences are encouraged. Applicants are required to submit scores from the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination. Collateral courses may be required to overcome deficiencies in addition to the requirements for the master’s degree. Collateral course work will not count towards the master’s degree.

Requirements for the Master of Science Degree in Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management
  
The student may elect either Plan A (with thesis) or Plan B (without thesis). Plan A emphasizes integrated and applied research and is designed as the foundation for doctoral study. Plan B focuses on the acquisition of well-defined professional skills, appropriate for a terminal degree and for professional employment and development. A minimum of 30 credits is required for the degree under Plan A or Plan B. The student’s program of study must be developed in cooperation with and approved by the student’s guidance committee and must include the requirements specified below.

               
Requirements for Plan A and Plan B  
1. All of the following courses (9 credits):  
  CSUS 800 Foundations of Community Sustainability
3
  CSUS 802 Survey of Research Methods 3
  CSUS 814 Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management:   
        Theories and Applications 3
2. A minimum of 12 credits in course work in a focus area selected in consultation with the student’s guidance committee. At least 6 credits of this focus area must be in Community Sustainability (CSUS) courses.  
               
Additional Requirements for Plan A  
1. A minimum of 3 credits of quantitative or qualitative methods to be selected in consultation with the student’s guidance committee.  
2. A minimum of 6 credits of Community Sustainability 899.  
3. Successful completion and defense of the master’s thesis.  
               
Additional Requirements for Plan B  
1. A minimum of 3 credits of a techniques or skill-building course relevant to the student’s academic and career goals, to be selected in consultation with the student’s guidance committee.  
2. Both of the following courses (6 credits):  
  CSUS 895 Case Studies in Community Sustainability
3
  CSUS 898 Master’s Professional Project 3
3. Completion and defense of a paper based on the master’s professional project.  



Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management - Doctor of Philosophy

The Doctor of Philosophy degree in Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management is designed to enable students to generate new knowledge in the complementary fields of tourism and protected area management under the overarching concept of community sustainability.

In addition to meeting the requirements of the university and of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, students must meet the requirements specified below.

Admission

To be admitted to the Doctor of Philosophy degree program in Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management, a student must have completed a master’s degree in any field. Relevant experience and strong academic backgrounds in the natural, physical, or social sciences, including independent research experience, are strongly encouraged. All applicants are required to submit scores from the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination.

Requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management

The student’s program of study must be developed in cooperation with and approved by the student’s guidance committee and must include the requirements specified below:

                 
1. Both of the following courses (6 credits):    
  CSUS 800 Foundations of Community Sustainability
3  
  CSUS 814 Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area    
        Management: Theories and Applications 3  
  If a student already has credit in CSUS 814, these credits must be replaced by another 3 credits of research or a course relevant to one of the student's two focus areas.
   
2. Complete a minimum of 9 credits of course work in advanced research methods, to be selected in consultation with the student’s guidance committee, including at least 3 credits respectively in quantitative and qualitative methods.
   
3. Complete a minimum of 21 credits in course work grouped in two focus areas each of which must have a minimum of 9 credits. Of these, at least 9 credits in total and at least one course in each focus area must be selected from Community Sustainability (CSUS) courses unless the student has previously completed a Master of Science degree in Sustainable Tourism and Protected Area Management.
   
4. Prepare a comprehensive examination program statement that presents the student’s learning and professional background and goals, and provides a rationale for the student’s declared focus areas. This statement is prepared in consultation with the student’s guidance committee and is presented to the full faculty for review.    
5. Pass a comprehensive examination based on the student’s comprehensive examination program statement.
6. Complete 24 credits of doctoral dissertation research and successfully defend the dissertation. Present the results of the research in a public seminar during the final oral examination.    
                 
All students are encouraged to prepare at least one paper from the dissertation research suitable for submission to a professional and/or refereed academic journal.