Master of Science (MS)/Thesis or Non-Thesis Option

The Master of Science, with thesis, requires a minimum of 32 semester-hours of coursework. Typically, 22 or more hours will be taken in the department; four of these hours will be credited for the thesis, and the other coursework will be in supporting field(s) of interest.

Coursework in the supporting fields in the MS-Thesis program may be in any academic area that contributes to a students career objectives. Examples include agricultural leadership, agricultural communications, change management, extension education, international agricultural development, research methods and sociology. A residence requirement of nine semester hours of coursework in one semester or in two consecutive five-week summer terms must be completed.

Students whose career objectives are concerned with formal or informal education in agriculture may seek the Master of Science-Non-Thesis option: e.g., teaching agricultural sciences, working as an Extension educator, in leadership fields, in training and development or international agricultural development. The 36 semester-hours of coursework consist typically of 18 to 24 semester hours in the department and the remainder in support areas: e.g., courses in agricultural leadership, methods of adult and extension education, educational administration, or other social sciences. A residence requirement of 12 semester hours of coursework in must be completed.

Master of Agriculture (MAg)-Distance Education only

Students pursuing careers in fields such as instructional design, agricultural leadership or rural community development might seek the Master of Agriculture in Agricultural Development. The program prepares individuals for leadership roles in education, natural resource management, cooperative extension service, and many other professional careers in agriculture and life sciences. This non-thesis degree program is completed at a distance that emphasizes the development of problem-solving skills involved in applying science and technology to benefit humanity.

One-half or more of the 36 semester hour program consists of courses in the department. Distance courses are completed to meet the 12 semester hour residence requirement. Because of the diverse nature of the careers selected by MAgr graduate students, degree plans will vary considerably and are generally unique for each individual.

An internship is a unique feature of the MAg program. To demonstrate problem solving capabilities, a professional internship may be completed to provide meaningful, applied, and practical experience. An internship is generally completed at the end of formal coursework, and involves either paid or un-paid employment with a cooperating business or agency. Planned in concert by the student, university adviser and business supervisor, the internship normally lasts from three to six months. A professional paper is required. One to three credits may be earned for the internship and professional goals.

Steps to Fulfill Master’s Degree Requirements

  • Sample Master of Science Degree Plan
  • Sample Master of Agriculture Degree Plan

Office of Graduate and Professional Studies Home Page

Planning Your Steps to Graduation

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