United States Masters in Conservation Biology Graduate Programs
A Masters in Conservation Biology Graduate Program may be perfect for you if you want to deepen your understanding of the environmental problems associated with the decline of ecosystems and the loss of biological diversity. Let’s face it; worrying about climate change and the extinction of the condors won’t solve anything. The world needs conservation scientists because they study ecology, wildlife systems and conservation biology in different settings. Professionals in this field are tasked with managing, improving, and protecting the country's natural resources. Does understanding more about conservation and studying natural environments or wildlife populations appeal to you? Are you solution-focused with a concern for the environmental interactions between animals, plants, and humans? If so, take a look inside a Conservation Biology Masters Program!
Masters in Conservation Biology Program Essentials
If you are considering enrolling in a Conservation Biology Masters Program, you need to have your Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university. In some cases, a background in ecology, genetics and evolutionary biology is preferred. You also may need to submit official undergraduate transcripts and GRE test scores. In some cases, it may be recommended that you take the Biology Subject test and, you may also be expected to have a Statement of Academic Purpose and three letters of recommendation from academic sources.
Most Masters in Conservation Biology degree programs take at least 2 years of study to complete. Along the way, you learn about advanced topics in conservation through courses, environmental seminars and field excursions. You may also be required to write a thesis or conduct an independent research project before program completion. This is called a ‘capstone’.
FUN FACT: In 2015, there were nearly 50 bachelor’s and master’s degree
programs in forestry, urban forestry, and natural resources and ecosystem management accredited by the Society of American Foresters[i].
How to Find a Masters in Conservation Biology Grad Program
Grad Schools.com has easy to use search tools to help you find the program that aligns with your interests. You can start off with a location search; use the city, state or country to see where you might prefer to study. Then review the listings. You can also request info from each graduate school from the site, so send off a few notes and then, from there, narrow it down. Browse all Campus listings
Types Of Conservation Biology Masters Degree Programs
Students completing a master’s degree in this field typically pursue a Masters of Science (M.S.) in Conservation Biology. You likely will not find online degree programs since the Conservation Biology concentration emphasizes the importance of practical field experience and ‘getting your feet wet’. However, you might explore Masters in Environmental Science Online Programs to see what is available as a distance-learning option. Core requirements often include a mix of conceptual and practical classes, research, and practica.
Masters in Conservation Biology: Potential Curriculum
Students might expect to learn fundamental disciplines and theory of conservation biology, as well as concentration courses in conservation issues. Expect as well that you are likely to examine individual species and their interactions with the environment, as well as the way in which policy decisions can drive beneficial or harmful changes in ecosystems.
DID YOU KNOW? Scientists and foresters also typically have a background in a geographic information systems (GIS) technology, remote sensing, and other forms of computer modeling.[ii]
Since conservation biology is interdisciplinary, you may find programs that combine the natural sciences with environmental policy and law. Courses might include:
- Evolutionary biology
- Statistical analysis
- Biological Sciences
Potential areas of Concentration might include:
- Wildlife Management
- Water pollution
- Animal behavior
- Computer cartography
- Aquatic ecology
Potential Career Paths for Masters in Conservation Biology Graduates
If you aspire to work as a Conservation Scientist or Forester, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, you typically need a bachelor’s degree in forestry or a related field, such as agricultural science, rangeland management, or environmental science. Graduate work is not generally required, however, some conservation scientists and foresters get a master’s degree or Ph.D.
Furthermore, if you aspire to a postsecondary teaching career, or to conduct higher-level investigative or scientific work as a Wildlife Biologist or Zoologist, you need at least a Masters degree and possibly a PhD in Conservation Biology[iii].
Take the Next Step
If you took anything away with you, it might be that earning your Masters in Conservation Biology may give you more options and a deeper level of knowledge and the opportunity to pursue a concentration in an area that is really meaningful to you. So take the next step in your education, and explore Conservation Biology Graduate Programs on GradSchools.com today!
Sources: [i] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/conservation-scientists.htm | [ii] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/conservation-scientists.htm | [iii] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/zoologists-and-wildlife-biologists.htm | http://www.safnet.org/
Colorado State University
Colorado State University's online Master of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology (M.F.W.C.B.) focuses on the ecology and management of wild animals, for their benefit and the benefit of humans.
- Storrs Mansfield, CTStorrs Mansfield, CT
University of Connecticut
- New York City, NYNew York City, NY
The M.A. program in Conservation Biology integrates the biological sciences with environmental policy and economics.
- Pocatello, IDPocatello, ID
Idaho State University
M.S. program requires substantive, original research project, 30 credits of graduate work, and research tool.Ph.D. is primarily a research degree. The...
- Tempe, AZTempe, AZ
Arizona State University
Study and research are offered in the general areas of Behavior, Computational/Statistical/Mathematical Biology, Biology Education, Conservation Biology, Molecular and Cell Biology, Developmental Biology, Ecology, Genetics, History of Biology, Evolution...
- Orlando, FLOrlando, FL
University of Central Florida
The Master of Science degree in Biology is offered with the following areas of specialization: Biology, Botany, Cell Biology, Development, Genetics, L...
- Boise, IDBoise, ID
Boise State University
The MA is an application-based degree; students will complete a project that may be an application or a synthesis of original...
- Charleston, ILCharleston, IL
Eastern Illinois University
The Biological Sciences Graduate Program provides graduate students with a unique opportunity to pursue concentrated studies...
- Saint Paul, MNSaint Paul, MN
University of Minnesota
The Conservation Biology Graduate Program at the University of Minnesota has two complementary missions. The first is to provide students with sound graduate training in the biological sciences relevant to the conservation of plants, animals and ecosyst...
- Twin Cities, MN
- Boston, MABoston, MA
The Ph.D. program in Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology will train independent scientists whose research addresses fundamental and applied questions at local, regional, national, and global scales. This training will include both general and spec...
- Brockport, NYBrockport, NY
State University Of New York, College At Brockport
Environmental problems are among the most urgent issues facing our civilization. To manage Earth’s environment well, we must u...
- College Park, MDCollege Park, MD
University of Maryland - College Park
This program has the geographical advantage of proximity to Washington, D.C.
- Allendale, MIAllendale, MI
Grand Valley State University
The Master of Science in Biology is designed to allow students the opportunity to study at a graduate level in broad areas.
- Lafayette, LALafayette, LA
University of Louisiana at Lafayette
Most Biology graduate faculty members compete in one or more research areas, and may encompass microorganisms, plants (ranging from algae to mangroves) and animals (including anemones and corals, mollusks, crustaceans, and fish). Topics of study include...
- Riverside, CARiverside, CA
University of California - Riverside
- Richmond, KYRichmond, KY
Eastern Kentucky University
Masters of Science in Biology with concentration areas in General Biology, Applied Ecology and Bioinformatics.
- New Orleans, LANew Orleans, LA
University of New Orleans
The Department of Biological Sciences offers graduate training leading to the PhD in Conservation Biology, as well as the MS in general Biological Sciences. The PhD program provides students with knowledge and research training in specific areas related...
- Burlington, VTBurlington, VT
University of Vermont
- Laramie, WYLaramie, WY
University of Wyoming
- Los Angeles, CALos Angeles, CA
California State University, Los Angeles
Our program prepares students for doctoral study, careers in research, biotech, hospital and public health labs, and teaching.
- Richmond, VARichmond, VA
Virginia Commonwealth University
The Department of Biology in the College of Humanities and Sciences offers programs leading to the Master of Science degree.
- Mount Pleasant, MIMount Pleasant, MI
Central Michigan University
- Tallahassee, FLTallahassee, FL
Florida State University
The Department of Biological Science offers both Ph.D. and MS. degrees. Students can specialize in a wide range of subdisciplines within the biological sciences including conservation biology. Visit our department's website, click on "Ecology and Evolut...
- Keene, NHKeene, NH
Antioch University New England
Be an advocate for environmental conservation, education, and justice. Develop strong skills in natural history, ecological research, quantitative analysis, geographic information systems (GIS), environmental communication, and organizational leadership...