Rochester Institute of Technology

Sustainable Systems, MS


One Lomb Memorial Drive

Rochester, NY 14623

United States





Program Information

Degrees Offered:

Master of Science in Sustainable Systems

Format: Campus

Program Description:

The MS degree in sustainable systems focuses on sustainable production systems, which create goods and services using processes that are non-polluting; conserving of energy and natural resources; economically viable; and safe and healthful for workers, communities, and consumers. Coursework and research takes a systems level and interdisciplinary approach to solving sustainability problems, as opposed to single disciplinary and locally optimized approaches destined to yield marginal positive impacts.

Graduates of this program are prepared to pursue careers in their chosen fields with an understanding of basic sustainability principles and the expertise to analyze and solve complex sustainability issues. For example, students entering the program with a degree in information systems may go on to work in the eco-IT field while students with an economics background may work in the area of life-cycle economic analysis of alternative energy systems.

Students must complete a minimum of 30 semester credit hours of combined coursework and research. This includes a minimum of 24 semester credit hours of coursework and 6 semester credit hours of thesis or research. Full-time students may complete the degree in one year (two semesters plus one summer term).

There are six required courses:

5001-802 Fundamentals of Sustainability Science
5001-804 Industrial Ecology
5001-803 Economics of Sustainability
5001-805 Technology, Policy, and Sustainability
5001-806 Risk Analysis
5001-808 Multi-criteria Sustainable Systems Analysis

Elective courses, selected in consultation with the student’s adviser, may come from a wide variety of courses offered by GIS or one of RIT’s colleges.


Middle States, New York State

International Student Requirements:

International applicants whose native language is not English must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Minimum scores of 600 (paper-based) or 100 (Internet-based) are required. International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores will be accepted in place of the TOEFL exam. The minimum acceptable score is 6.5.

Facts & Figures

Financial Aid: Yes

International Financial Aid: Yes

International Financial Aid Description: For graduate study, many of the 70 graduate programs offer assistantships. Additionally, more than 9,000 student jobs are available on campus each year.

# of Credits Required: 30

Classification: Master's College or University I

Loans Offered: Loans may be available. Applicants may apply by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Candidates may work with RIT's Financial Aid Office to determine aid eligibility and funding options.

Locale: Large Suburb

Find Schools