Agricultural Sciences (M.S.)
The M.S. Agricultural Sciences graduate program offered by the Department of Agriculture, Nutrition, and Food Systems (ANFS) is intended for students interested in careers in plant and animal agriculture, aquaculture, food production and distribution systems, and/or related fields.
Emphasis is placed on acquiring basic and practical knowledge in one or more of the diverse components of agricultural systems, including breeding and genetics, physiology, environmental interactions, organismal health, cultural and post-harvest practices, and others. The agricultural sciences graduate programs prepare students to become highly knowledgeable and competent in professional fields related to agriculture, and leaders in collaborative and interdisciplinary efforts to address local, regional, national and/or global agricultural issues.
Graduates may pursue careers in teaching, public service, research in federal, state, and private organizations, commercial plant and/or animal production for food, fiber, fuel, recreation, and many other areas.
Students plan a program of study in conjunction with their advisor and Master’s Thesis Committee, including the required courses and competencies. Completion of at least 30 credits, including research credits, is required. A thesis proposal is developed within the first year. Students complete thesis research for 6 -10 credits; the degree is completed when results are acceptable, a formal thesis presentation and defense has occurred, and the thesis is approved by the Master’s Thesis Committee and accepted by the Graduate School.
Number of Credits Required
The M.S. degree requires completion of a minimum of 30 credits, 6-10 of which may be earned for thesis research (ANFS 899 Master's Thesis). Up to 8 credits of graduate credit from another institution may be transferred, provided the credits were not counted toward another degree, and the course grade was a B or higher. Petitions requesting transfer credit must be supported by the advisor and graduate committee, and approved by the UNH Graduate School.
Required Courses, Competencies, and Electives
Students in the Agricultural Sciences Graduate Programs are required to take two core courses: ANFS 895 Special Topics Introduction to Agriculture, Nutrition and Food System Graduate Studies (to be taken at the earliest opportunity, typically in the initial fall semester of the graduate program); and ANFS 997 Agriculture, Nutrition, and Food Systems Seminar (1 cr per semester, to be taken at least twice by MS students). In addition, students will be expected to fulfill competency requirements in experimental design and analysis and in scientific writing and communication. For this purpose, relevant courses include Applied Biostatistics II (BIOL 811), Design, Analysis, and Interpretation of Experiments (BIOL 933), and Scientific Writing (e.g., Writing and Publishing Science (BIOL 902). Depending on the prior background of incoming students, one or both of these competency requirements may have been fulfilled through previous graduate or other course work or professional experience. Each student, in consultation with their graduate committee, will define one or more areas of informal specialization, and will take additional courses appropriate for their area(s) of specialization.
All students in the Agricultural Sciences Graduate Programs are expected to present their research in public seminars (including the UNH Graduate Research Conference), and acquire teaching and/or mentoring experience.
A summary of M.S. and Ph.D. degree requirements will be available on our website, along with the program’s graduate handbook, which includes expectations, guidelines, and detailed policies.