While the need for field technicians and biological scientists remains high in the field of natural resource management, there has been increasing demand for higher-level managers with experience in policymaking, communication, human resources, and conflict resolution. Professionals seeking to advance their careers by increasing skills in these areas are perfectly matched with the Natural Resource Policy & Administration degree or certificate program.
Online Master’s in Natural Resource Policy and Administration (MS, non-thesis)
The online Master of Science in Natural Resource Policy and Administration is offered by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) in the School of Forest Resources and Conservation. This program is designed for natural resource or environmental science professionals who are interested in advancing their careers by earning a graduate degree. The ability to take this program entirely online means that students will not have to sacrifice their commitments to career and family in order to earn the degree.
Graduates of natural resource degree programs are well‐equipped for careers focused in biology, statistics, ecology, geology, and other sciences, but lack a strong basis in the administrative aspects of careers in government, state/federal agencies, NGOs, and private firms. Stakeholder and industry feedback has been unanimous with regards to the need for training, for traditional and non‐traditional students, in policy, analysis, human management, and organizational administration. This concentration offers a means of obtaining the prerequisites to higher‐level administration careers for natural resource professionals as well as students seeking to round‐out their education in natural resources.
The non-thesis Forest Resources and Conservation MS program in Natural Resource Policy and Administration consists of 30 credits, of which at least 15 must be part of the approved set of courses for the Natural Resource Policy and Administration concentration. Students may choose from other SFRC courses or any graduate course offered by UF, with the approval of your advisor. Electives should typically be related to natural resources, environmental policy, economics, or organizational management.
Five of the following seven courses are required, total 15 credits:
- FOR 6934, Practical Legal Concepts in Natural Resources
- FOR 6005, Conservation Behavior
- FOR 6543, Natural Resource Economics & Valuation
- FNR 6669 Policy and Economics of Natural Resources
- FOR 6934, Conflict, Collaboration, and Community Engagement in Natural Resources
- FOR 6934, Human and Organizational Management in Natural Resources
- FOR 6934, Managing Public Lands and Waters
An additional 15 elective credits are required to complete the 30 credit degree. During the degree, students may register for a maximum of 6 credits of FOR 6905 for credit towards an independent study as agreed upon by the faculty advisor and/or proxy advisor.
Academic programs are required to give a final examination to students as part of their MS graduation requirements. The examination format (e.g., written or oral), length, breadth, location, and subject matter will be determined by the Major Advisor plus an additional SFRC faculty member in concert with the student. The content will be centered on subject matter drawn from the student’s coursework. A second SFRC faculty member, to be identified by the Advisor and student working together, will be required to participate in the student’s examination. The examination should be taken during the last semester of enrollment, but no later than one month prior to the end of the term. See Graduate School deadlines for specific dates.
Students completing the MS non-thesis with concentration in Natural Resource Policy and Administration will develop or strengthen their knowledge and skills, including:
1) Content knowledge in the following areas:
– implications of natural resource policy and economic theory to resource management
– application of policy and economic theory in regards to legislation and administration of natural resources
– how to conduct stakeholder assessments, surveys, and other public interactions
2) Communication skills, with regards to conflict and collaboration management
– application of best practices to communicate effectively with public and stakeholders in written form
3) Critical Thinking
– identify, evaluate, and manage human dimension issues (conflicts)
– analyze natural resource policies and economics
Current Tuition Rate
$565 per credit hour
Tuition rates apply to in-state, out-of-state, and international students equally. For students using state employee tuition waivers, or for students who are considered “on-campus,” Distance Learning fees of $28/credit hour may apply.
Elective courses taken outside of the Forest Resources and Conservation program will have tuition rates set by the individual department offering the course.