To receive a master’s degree at Northern Arizona University, you must complete a planned group of courses from one or more subject areas, consisting of at least 30 units of graduate-level courses. (Many master’s degree programs require more than 30 units.)
You must additionally complete:
In addition to University Requirements:
|Minimum Units for Completion||34 - 36|
|Additional Admission Requirements||Admission requirements over and above admission to NAU are required.|
|Emphasis, Minor, Certificate||
Emphasis, minor, and/or certificate are required.
|Thesis||Thesis is required.
|Oral Defense||Oral Defense is required.
|Research||Individualized research is required.
|Progression Plan Link||View Program of Study|
The Master of Science in Environmental Sciences and Policy (MS ES&P) is an interdisciplinary degree program that combines a series of science and policy core courses with a breadth of specialized classes from across the University. Lasting solutions to most environmental problems are likely to be found at the nexus of the natural and social sciences. The MS ES&P program provides applied, cross-disciplinary training to prepare students to solve environmental problems using the scientific method combined with an in-depth knowledge of the political system. Students gain this knowledge through their individual thesis research and coursework in quantitative research methods, natural sciences and political sciences.
This two-year degree program has two distinct emphasis areas: Environmental Sciences and Policy, and Paleoenvironmental Sciences. The core courses for both emphases include: 1) The Environmental Science-Policy Interface (ENV 555), 2) two research methods seminars (ESS 505, 506), 3) one or more quantitative analysis courses, and 4) thesis credits. All ES&P students work closely with a faculty adviser to design and implement individual thesis research. Students in the Environmental Sciences and Policy emphasis generally focus their coursework and research on the science-policy interface and may examine a wide range of environmental problems such as issues related to food security, pollution, or resource management. Students in Paleoenvironmental Sciences emphasis generally analyze ancient environments to gain insights to help predict future environmental dynamics, particularly related to climate change.
The MS ES&P program's rigorous training in the natural and political sciences prepares graduates for successful environmental careers in industry, government, and the non-profit sector. Our graduates can successfully communicate across multiple disciplines and negotiate scientifically and politically sound solutions to the wide range of environmental problems that currently challenge our society. The ES&P curriculum trains students how to assess the costs and benefits of various public policies and actions. The research skills gained by ES&P students help them continue to expand their knowledge long after they graduate from the program. This training and experience helps our graduates assume leadership roles in environmental fields. Finally, the MS ES&P program prepares students for entry into Ph.D. programs in environmental sciences and other related fields if they choose to continue in an academic track.
Student Learning Outcomes
Individual program admission requirements include:
Take the following 34 - 36 units:
Core (15 units)
Select one course in environmental laws, regulations, and policy selected from (3 units):
Paleoenvironmental Sciences Emphasis (19-20 units)
Be aware that some courses may have prerequisites that you must also take. For prerequisite information click on the course or see your advisor.