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  Aug 21, 2017
 
 
    
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2009-2010 Downtown Campus Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Environmental Sciences MS


 ►  Graduate School Rules  apply to this program

 

Program Director: John Wyckoff
Associate Program Director: Jon Barbour
Office: North Classroom, 3622
Telephone: 303-556-4520
Fax: 303-556-6197
E-mail: Jon.Barbour@ucdenver.edu
Web site: www.cudenver.edu/ges/mses.html

Faculty (Concurrently Appointed)

Professors:
Larry Anderson, chemistry
Lloyd Burton, School of Public Affairs
Lynn Johnson, civil engineering
John Lanning, chemistry
Martin Lockley, geography and environmental science
Diana Tomback, biology

Associate Professors:
Leo Bruederle, biology
Frederick Chambers, geography and environmental science
Greg Cronin, biology
Brian Page, geography and environmental science
Anu Ramaswami, civil engineering
Timberly Roane, biology
Deborah Thomas, geography and environmental science
John Wyckoff, geography and environmental science

Assistant Professors:
Michael Green, biology
Rafael Moreno, geography and environmental science
Brian Muller, planning and design
Bryan S. Wee, geography and environmental science

 

Environmental sciences is a multidisciplinary study of the environment, housed in the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences. The academic fields involved in environmental sciences include chemistry, biology and ecology, physics, geology, geography, anthropology, engineering, political science, law, economics and the health sciences. Students planning to pursue the MS in environmental sciences must either have earned a bachelor’s degree or have taken significant course work in the natural/physical sciences or engineering and completed several other prerequisites (see the following graduate information). Graduate-level certificates in environmental sciences are also offered. The certificates may be earned stand-alone or as options in the MS in environmental sciences.

Environmental careers encompass a broad range of professions, from those with a strong foundation in the natural/physical sciences or engineering to those based in the social sciences and/or humanities. Students interested in environmental issues and careers should investigate the whole field before deciding which course to follow. At the Downtown Campus, the MS in environmental sciences emphasizes the natural/physical sciences and engineering with the addition of the social sciences and humanities.

The MS in environmental sciences degree is designed to provide training in engineering, natural/physical sciences and socioeconomic analysis. The goals of the program are to (1) enhance the interdisciplinary communication and analytical skills of the student, and (2) provide a multidisciplinary approach for more intensive study of a particular environmental issue. Students will receive instruction in the physical and biological dynamics of various ecosystems, environmental engineering and socioeconomic issues associated with environmental analysis.

Graduates of the environmental sciences program are involved in many different areas, such as reviewing environmental impact statements, monitoring groundwater quality and communicating with the public. Many students have found employment in various agencies (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Geological Survey, Colorado State Department of Public Health and Environment) and private-sector environmental and engineering firms.

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Requirements for Admission                                                                       

The program is for students who either have baccalaureate degrees or significant background in one of the natural/physical sciences or engineering. In addition, minimum undergraduate science and math requirements are:

  • one semester of calculus and one semester of upper-division statistics (if applicant is missing the statistics course, he/she can be admitted but must take ENVS 5600, Applied Statistics, or an approved statistics course as an elective before receiving the MS in environmental sciences degree)
  • two semesters general chemistry with lab
  • one semester physics
  • two semesters general biology with lab

If only two semesters of the six prerequisite courses are lacking, students may be admitted, but must take them in the first year in the program. Applicants who have fulfilled all prerequisites have a better chance of acceptance. Applicants may be required to take additional prerequisite courses (necessary for completing particular core or elective courses). The prerequisite courses will not count toward the MS environmental sciences degree. As part of the admission review process, applicants are required to submit a graduate application, a minimum of three letters of recommendation, transcripts from all institutions previously attended, and general GRE scores. UC Denver has a minimum requirement of a 3.0 undergraduate GPA for applicants to the Graduate School. The program admits new students for the fall semester and the number of students admitted to the program depends, in part, on space availability. Applicants must submit all materials by the April 1 deadline.

Financial Aid

There are three kinds of financial aid available: tuition assistance; research assistantship positions funded by grants to specific program faculty; and the regular package of financial aid (primarily loans) available through the financial aid office on the Downtown Campus. Incoming students will be automatically considered for program-distributed tuition assistance at the time of admission to the program. Continuing students will be regularly apprised of available aid and positions. Students interested in research assistantships should consult individual faculty with whom they wish to work regarding potential assistantship positions. All other aid should be requested through the UC Denver Financial Aid Office, North Classroom, 1030, Campus Box 125, P.O. Box 173364, Denver, CO 80217-3364. Telephone: 303-556-2886.

Internships

Students in the MS in environmental sciences program are strongly encouraged to contact the Experiential Learning Center for internships and paid positions related to environmental sciences. The Experiential Learning Center is located in the Tivoli Student Union, Suite 260. Telephone: 303-556-2250. Many students have had internships in federal agencies, such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Geological Survey.

Master’s International Program

The master’s international (MI) program is a cooperative effort between the U.S. Peace Corps and UC Denver that provides students with the opportunity to earn a master of science in environmental sciences degree and at the same time gain a Peace Corps experience. The objective of the program is to have students interested in international environmental issues gain firsthand overseas experiences and earn credit toward their degree.

To qualify for the program, students must meet the admissions requirements for the university master’s degree program and the requirements established by the Peace Corps for volunteer service. In some cases, enrolled students will be able to apply to the Peace Corps as a program applicant during their first semester of graduate study. Students in the MI program must complete the same degree requirements as non-MI students in the MS in environmental sciences program. A diverse pool of applicants and participants to the program will be encouraged.

MI program participants entering the Peace Corps will complete approximately 12 weeks of preservice training. Upon successful completion of training, program participants will become Peace Corps volunteers and begin a two-year tour of service in their country of assignment. Before beginning their Peace Corps assignments, program participants will be expected to meet academic requirements of the program. The program will be designed to prepare them for Peace Corps service and volunteer activities generally.

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Program Requirements


The MS in environmental sciences is a 39-hour program that provides students with two alternate plans: Plan I requires a thesis, while Plan II is a nonthesis program. General requirements for the program include: a set of core courses (15 semester hours), the MS in environmental sciences seminar course (ENVS 6002, 3 semester hours), an environmental policy course (3 semester hours), and elective courses (12 semester hours minimum). Students choosing Plan I must also complete 6 hours of thesis, while those choosing Plan II must complete 6 hours of additional elective course work. Students opting for Plan II are encouraged to enroll in 3 hours of independent study (ENVS 6840) as one of their electives.

The degree is offered through the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences with the cooperation of the College of Engineering and Applied Science. In addition, some courses offered by the College of Architecture and Planning, the School of Public Affairs and the Business School are relevant and applicable to the program.

Required Core Courses


Total: 15 Hours


The core courses are to be taken first upon entry into the program. They are the foundation for other courses in environmental sciences.

Seminar Course


Students are required to register for ENVS 6002, Environmental Sciences Seminar, in the first semester they are enrolled in the MS in environmental sciences program. The seminar serves as an introduction to the program and helps students to develop research skills and further their professional development.

Policy Courses


Students are required to enroll in at least one course (3 semester hours) that deals with environmental policy. The environmental policy requirement of the master’s program is intended to expose students whose background is largely in the natural sciences or engineering to the legal, political and social aspects of environmental issues. To satisfy this requirement, students must enroll in one of the following courses (other courses may be acceptable if approved by the program director):

Choose one:

Total: 3 Hours


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Elective Courses


(See the MS in Environmental Sciences Web site for a complete list of elective courses for the MS in environmental sciences program.)

Students, with the coordinator and/or an advisor, will complete a program plan that will include 12-21 semester hours of elective requirements that will meet their interests. Students may choose to use four of the electives to fulfill one of the following options offered in environmental sciences: air quality, ecosystems, environmental health, geospatial analysis, hazardous waste and water quality. Students must have the prerequisites for each course and must meet the requirements listed in the notes below. Contact the option advisor for the particular option of interest before starting. Upon graduation, the option will be noted on the student’s transcript.

Following are the requirements for each environmental sciences option:

AIR QUALITY OPTION


Option Advisor: Larry Anderson
Telephone: 303-556-2963
E-mail: Larry.Anderson@ucdenver.edu

Total: 6 Hours

Electives

Choose two:

Total: 6 Hours

Option Total: 12 Hours

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ECOSYSTEMS OPTION*


Option Advisor: Gregory Cronin
Telephone: 303-556-6036
E-mail: Gregory.Cronin@ucdenver.edu

Required Courses

Total: 6 Hours

Electives

Choose two:

Total: 6 Hours

Option Total: 12 Hours

* BIOL 5445, Applied Environmental Biology, required as a prerequisite for the ecosystems option.

 

ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH OPTION*


Option Advisor: Deborah Thomas
Telephone: 303-556-5292
E-mail: Deborah.Thomas@ucdenver.edu

Required Courses

Total: 6 Hours

Total: 6 Hours

Option Total: 12 Hours

* ENVS 6200, Risk Assessment, required as a prerequisite for the environmental health option.

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GEOSPATIAL ANALYSIS OPTION*


Option Advisor: Rafael Moreno
Telephone: 303-556-3762
E-mail: Rafael.Moreno@ucdenver.edu

Total: 6 Hours

Total: 6 Hours

Option Total: 12 Hours

* GEOG 3080, Introduction to Mapping and Map Analysis, is required as a prerequisite of the geospatial analysis option.

For more information, contact the option advisor or Jon Barbour at 303-556-4520, Jon.Barbour@ucdenver.edu.

 

HAZARDOUS WASTE OPTION*


Option Advisor: Anu Ramaswami
Telephone: 303-556-4734
E-mail: Anu.Ramaswami@ucdenver.edu

Required Courses

Total: 6 Hours

Total: 6 Hours

Option Total: 12 Hours

*C E 5401, Introduction to Environmental Engineering, required as a prerequisite for the hazardous waste option.

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WATER QUALITY OPTION*


Option Advisor: John Wyckoff
Telephone: 303-556-2590
E-mail: John.Wyckoff@ucdenver.edu

Required Courses

Total: 6 Hours

Total: 6 Hours

Option Total: 12 Hours

*CHEM 5700, Environmental Chemistry, is required as a prerequisite of the water quality option.

 

Notes:


  1. Many of the courses have prerequisites; student must check the catalog for prerequisite requirements for these courses. Some options have a prerequisite course requirement.
  2. One course may not be used for more than one option, even if it is listed in several options. Other courses may be offered that will be acceptable as electives with approval of the option advisor and the director of the program.
  3. No more than three courses may be from any one discipline (excluding ENVS); i.e., chemistry, biology, civil engineering.
  4. Courses used by the student to fulfill a core requirement may not be used to fulfill the options.
  5. All work submitted for the environmental sciences options must have a grade of B (3.0) or better.
  6. All courses for the environmental sciences options must be completed at the Downtown Campus.
  7. Courses applied to either a certificate* or an MS degree may later be applied toward the other if all pertinent course work is completed within a five-year time period.

* The above options of the program may be taken to earn a corresponding environmental sciences certificate. However, certificates may be earned without entrance into the MS in environmental sciences program. (See the Environmental Sciences Graduate Certificate  description).

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