Academic Programs Catalog

College of Social Science

Interdepartmental Graduate Specializations

Graduate Specialization in Environmental Science and Policy (this program is in moratorium effective Fall 2018 through Fall 2019)

The Graduate Specialization in Environmental Science and Policy, which is administered by the College of Social Science, is available as an elective to students enrolled in doctoral degree programs in departments and programs emphasizing environmental science or policy. The goal of the specialization is to provide doctoral students with opportunities to develop cross-disciplinary literacy, learn to integrate information from diverse disciplines, and conduct analyses of environmental issues in ways that support better decision-making about environmental issues.  The specialization encourages students to develop analytical skills that span both disciplines and spatial and temporal scales and equips them to communicate across disciplines. It prepares students to engage in research, teaching and service focused on complex environmental problems and to develop and disseminate sound analyses to improve environmental decision-making.

Students who are interested in this specialization must contact an advisor for the Graduate Specialization in Environmental Science and Policy in the Environmental Science and Policy Program. To be admitted to the specialization, a student must also be admitted to a doctoral program at Michigan State University.

With the approval of the department and college that administer the student’s degree program, courses that are used to satisfy the requirements for the specialization may also be used to satisfy the requirements for a doctoral degree.

Requirements for the Graduate Specialization in Environmental Science and Policy

Complete all the following courses (9 to12 credits):

  1. ESP    801    Physical, Chemical and Biological Processes of the Environment  (3)
  2. A 3-credit 800-900 level natural science/engineering course from a list of approved courses available on the Environmental Science and Policy program Web site.
  3. A 3-credit 800-900 level social science/policy course from a list of approved courses available on the Environmental Science and Policy program Web site.
  4. Capstone Experience. One of the following:
    1. ESP    804    Environmental Applications and Analysis  (3)
    2. Participate in an internship, approved in advance by the advisor for the program.
    3. Write a white paper, approved in advance by the advisor for the program.
  5. Attend monthly student seminars as directed by the advisor for the program.

Students may apply to waive either the natural science or social science/policy course requirement if they demonstrate competence. Students should contact the advisor for the program to apply for a waiver.