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Water Resources

College of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Department of Ecosystem Science and Management
8 Agriculture Building
Phone: (307) 766-4274
E-mail: snmiller@uwyo.edu
Web Address: www.uwyo.edu/ware/
Program Director: Scott N. Miller

Degrees Offered

M.A. or M.S. in (Program Name)/Water Resources

The Graduate School cooperates with various academic departments across the university to provide master of arts or master of science degree programs that contain multidisciplinary training in water resources. The master's degree offered through these affiliations is awarded as a major with each of the sponsoring department's graduate programs. The water resources interdisciplinary major will be acknowledged on the graduate transcript and thereby certify to potential employers that the candidate has completed an in-depth multidisciplinary course program in the broad area of water resources.

The educational underpinnings of this program include the following:

The purpose of the program is to provide multidisciplinary education and to impart a multidisciplinary perspective to candidates.

Training is to be consistent with the rigor of professional water resources demands.

The interdisciplinary major program is flexible so as to meet the candidates' individual professional objectives.

Primary responsibility for student guidance and graduate program formulation resides with the sponsoring department and sponsoring major professor. Once accepted, each candidate's graduate committee will contain at least one member drawn from the Water Resources Curriculum Committee.

Please refer to latest updated information on the Web site listed above:

Scott Miller, chair, Ecosystem Science and Management
Don McLeod, Agriculture and Applied Economics
Carol Frost, Geology and Geophysics
William Gribb, Geology
Wayne Hubert, Zoology and Physiology
Drew Johnson, Civil and Architectural Engineering
David Legg, Ecosystem Science and Management

Upon acceptance to the program, the sponsoring department must assign a member of the Water Resources Curriculum Committee to the candidate's graduate committee. The Water Resources Curriculum Committee's representatives on the candidate's graduate committee shall aid in formulating deficiency requirements, course program design, academic performance criteria, and research objectives throughout the candidate's tenure in the program.

Program Specific Admission Requirements

  • University application and fee;
  • Application fee is valid for three years;
  • Official documentation indicating bachelor's degree earned (not necessary if UW is the most recent institution attended);
  • Potential candidates are encouraged to apply for admission to this program by contacting the participating department and by specifying at the initiation that they desire admission to the water resources interdisciplinary major. Their credentials will be evaluated by the sponsoring department.

Program Specific Degree Requirements

The academic program of study undertaken by the candidate must be designed to enhance the student's background and expertise through formal graduate level coursework in the areas of: (1) technical hydrology, (2) natural resources economics and/or law, and (3) water quality. To insure a minimum multidisciplinary character, the course program must contain nine hours of coursework with at least 3 hours from each of the aforementioned areas and at least 6 of those credit hours must be from outside the student's sponsoring department, along with a 1 credit hour seminar on water resources organized through the Department of Ecosystem Science and Management. Only Plan A master's degree programs, which require the writing of a thesis in the water resources area, are acceptable for the water resources degree option.

A. Hydrology (3 hours)
CE 4800 Hydrology 3
CE 4820 Groundwater and Drainage Engineering 3
CE 5810 Groundwater Hydrology 3
GEOG 5050 Fluvial Geomorphology 3
GEOL 5444 Geohydrology 3
GEOL 5550 Numerical Methods Groundwater Geology 3
GEOL 5570 Advanced Geohydrology 3
REWM 5285 Wildland Hydrology 3
SOIL/MATH 5110 Modeling Flow Transport in Soil and Groundwater Systems 4
B. Law/Natural Resource Economics (3 hours)
AGEC 4710 Natural Resources Law & Policy 3
AGEC 4720 Water Resource Economics 3
AGEC 5630 Advanced Natural Resource Economics 3
ECON 4400 Environmental Economics 3
ECON 4410 Natural Resource Economics 3
ECON 5400 Advanced Resource & Environmental Economics 3
LAW 6660 Environmental Law 3
LAW 6860 Water Rights 3
C. Water Quality (3 hours)
GEOL 4490 Geochemistry 3
GEOL 5450 Water Quality Modeling 3
GEOL 5777 Geochemistry of Natural Waters 3
REWM 4710/5710 Watershed Water Quality Management 3
SOIL 4130/5130 Chemistry of the Soil Environment 4
ZOO 4440 Limnology 3
D. One-Hour Seminar in Water Issues
REWM 5250, Seminar in Water Resources 1

Each student in the water resources interdisciplinary major program will be required to complete this course once during their graduate program. As part of the requirements for the seminar: (a) students will be required to present a seminar on a current water resource issue in Wyoming and to develop an executive summary of their issue to distribute to class participants. Each student is also required to participate in a discussion group following each seminar which stresses the interdisciplinary nature of the issue; (b) during the course of a student's graduate program, he/she will be required to present one seminar for the seminar series (preferably on some aspect of their thesis research). This presentation does not have to occur during the semester that the student is officially signed up for seminar credit.

Agricultural Economics/Water Resources

Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics
206 Agriculture Building
Phone: (307) 766-2386
E-mail: ag-econ@uwyo.edu
Web Site: www.uwyo.edu/agecon/

The objective of this program is to provide students with specialized study in water resources and to signify this specialization by the designation of the water resources interdisciplinary major on the transcript.

Coursework and Thesis

Students must complete the 24 credit hour agricultural and applied economics including M.S. core requirements plus 4 thesis hours and 9 credit hours in water resources approved courses.

Achieve a cumulative 3.0 GPA in the AGEC M.S. core requirements.

The candidate's graduate committee, nominated by the major professor, the student and the department head and appointed by the Graduate School, determine the final program of study and thesis research topic, which must be in the water resources area.

Presentation of research results at a formal public seminar.

Completion of an oral examination covering the student's thesis research administered by the graduate committee.

Oral Exam Requirement

In addition to coursework and a Plan A Thesis, students must pass a final oral examination. The student's committee may also require a written examination.

Interdisciplinary Component

nine hours

(see Water Resources degree requirements)

Rangeland Ecology and Watershed Management (REWM)

Botany/Water Resources

Department of Botany
114 Aven Nelson Building
Phone: (307) 766-2380
Web Address: www.uwyo.edu/botany

In addition to the general requirements for admission to the existing master's program in botany, the master of science in botany/water resources interdisciplinary major requirements will include the following variations:

Coursework and Thesis

16 semester hours are required in botany, plus 9 semester hours in water resources courses. Other courses in mathematics, physics, chemistry, and statistics also may be required as the special program and undergraduate preparation require.

Due to the various, potential subspecialities that students might follow in connection with a botany/water resources interdisciplinary major, no particular botany courses are prescribed. An appropriate array of courses for the desired specialty will be determined by agreement between the advisory committee, graduate student adviser, student, and with the approval of the Water Resources Curriculum Committee.

For the water resources interdisciplinary major, a Plan A Thesis is required. The student must present his or her research in a seminar before the department, and must pass an oral exam on the thesis research.

Interdisciplinary Component

9 hours
(see Water Resources degree requirements)

Civil Engineering/Water Resources

Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering
3074 Engineering Building
Phone: (307) 766-5255
E-mail: ceinfo@uwyo.edu
Web Address: www.eng.uwyo.edu/civil/

The purpose of this program is to broaden the students' master of science program in the water resource area in civil engineering.

Plan A Thesis Requirement

Only students with a M.S. Plan A thesis option are eligible. The student's graduate committee will include at least one member of the Water Resources Curriculum Committee.

Coursework and Thesis

Each student must complete a minimum of 28 hours of graduate level coursework and a thesis under Plan A (4 credit hours) to qualify for the master of science in civil engineering/water resources.

The student must obtain at least 18 credit hours of graduate level coursework in engineering, emphasizing a concentration of core courses in a particular area of emphasis in civil engineering. The core course areas of emphasis for this program are hydrologic and hydraulic engineering. The particular set of courses for a given area of emphasis will be designated by the faculty in the water resources area for these areas of emphasis with the approval of the Civil Engineering Graduate Committee.

Interdisciplinary Component

9 hours

A. Technical Hydrology (3 hours)
GEOL 5444 Geohydrology 3
GEOL 5550 Numerical Methods in Groundwater Geology I 3
GEOL 5570 Advanced Geohydrology 3
REWM 5285 Wildland Hydrology 3
REWM 5280 Stream Habitat Management 3
B. Law/Natural Resource Economics (3 hours)
(Please refer to the general degree requirements for a list of courses)
C. Water Quality (3 hours)
GEOL 5450 Water Quality Modeling 3
GEOL 5777 Geochemistry of Natural Waters 3
MOLB 4410 Water Microbiology 3
MOLB 4500 Microbial Ecology 3
ZOO 4440 Limnology 3

Entomology/Water Resources

Department of Ecosystem Science and Management
2013 Agriculture Building
Phone: (307) 766-2263
Web Address: www.uwyo.edu/esm
E-mail: esm@uwyo.edu

The purpose of this program is to enhance the cross-disciplinary linkage between entomology and water resources, and to provide students an entomology degree program which emphasizes the important issues in water resources. Aquatic insects are increasingly being used as bioindicators of aquatic ecosystem health. This is an area of environmental assessment that is rapidly expanding, as is the job market for scientists with this blend of skills.

Coursework and Thesis

Each student must complete a minimum of 26 credit hours of graduate level coursework and 4 thesis credit hours of
ENTO 5960 to qualify for a master of science degree in entomology/water resources. Specific coursework will be determined by the student's graduate committee; however, each student is required to enhance his/her background and expertise in the water resources area through specialized coursework and a seminar as shown below.

A. ENTO 5678 Aquatic Entomology 3
B. Interdisciplinary Component 9
(see Water Resources degree requirements)

Plan A Thesis Requirement

Only Plan A thesis students are eligible for the master of science in entomology/water resources. In addition to coursework and a Plan A thesis, students must pass a final written and oral examination. The student's graduate committee will include at least one member of the Water Resources Curriculum Committee to help ensure adherence to the master of science in entomology/water resources degree requirements and that research efforts are in the water area.

Geography/Water Resources

Department of Geography
207 Arts and Sciences Building
Phone: (307) 766-3311
Web Address: www.uwyo.edu/geog

The master of arts in geography/water resources is consistent with traditional emphases and long-term goals of the Department of Geography in natural resource management and studies of the Rocky Mountain-Great Plains environment.

Prerequisites

15 credit hours in geography, including: 3 hours in Maps and Mapping, 3 hours in Human Geography, and 3 hours in Physical or Environmental Geography. These credits will not count toward the master's degree.

Plan A Thesis Requirement

Only students with a Plan A thesis option are eligible. In addition to coursework and a Plan A thesis, students must pass a final oral examination. The student's committee may also require a written exam. The student's graduate committee will include at least one member of the Water Resources Curriculum Committee.

Coursework and Thesis

Each student must complete a minimum of 30 hours of graduate level coursework and a thesis under Plan A (GEOG 5960 for four credit hours). Specific requirements are outlined below, with course credit hours shown in parentheses.

A. Core requirements
GEOG 4280 or 5000 level 4
Any two of the following methods courses (6-8 credit hours):
GEOG 4000 Terrain Analysis 3
GEOG 4150 Cartography and Digital Map Design 4
GEOG 4200 Intro to Geographic Information Systems's= 3
GEOG 4210 Advanced Geographic Information Systems 3
GEOG 4860/5000 level 1-6
GEOG 4865/5000 level - Research seminar (4 credit maximum allowed in the core requirement)
GEOG 5790 Research Methods 1-3

All students must have committee approval to initiate research on their theses/professional papers and must successfully complete an oral defense of their theses/professional papers. The student's committee may also require a written examination.

B. Interdisciplinary Component 9 hours
(see Water Resources degree requirements)
C. REWM 5250 Seminar in Water Resources 1

Geology/Water Resources & Geophysics/Water Resources

Department of Geology and Geophysics
122 S.H. Knight Geology Building
Phone: (307) 766-3386
E-mail: acadcoord.gg@uwyo.edu
Web Address: http://geology.uwyo.edu

The purpose of this program is to formalize and broaden strong department offerings at the master of science level in ground water geology, natural waters geochemistry, mathematical hydrology, and fluvial geomorphology.

Coursework and Thesis

Each student must complete a minimum of 26 hours of graduate level coursework and a Plan A thesis. In addition, the following specific core courses are required for the master of science in geology/water resources and geophysics/water resources degrees.

A. GEOL 5444 Geohydrology 3
B. One of the following:
GEOL 4830 Introduction to Quantitative Methods in Geology 3
GEOL 4880 Surfacial Processes 3
GEOL 5050 Introduction to Isotope Geology 3
C. GEOL 5777 Geochemistry of Natural Waters 3
GEOL 5444 can be used to satisfy the 3 hour technical course requirement or GEOL 5777 can be used to satisfy the 3 hour water quality course requirement.

Admission Requirements

In addition to the department admission requirements, the undergraduate degree program earned by the incoming candidate must meet the minimum undergraduate requirements for the UW geology curriculum in mathematics, physics, and chemistry. The transcript should also demonstrate a strong background in physical geology.

Plan A Thesis Requirement

Only students with a Plan A thesis option are eligible. Students must follow the same program requirements as stated under Geology and Geophysics department section. The student's graduate committee will include at least one member of the Water Resources Curriculum Committee.

Interdisciplinary Component

9 hours
(see Water Resources degree requirements)

Rangeland Ecology and Watershed Management/Water Resources

Department of Ecosystem Science and Management
2013 Agriculture C Building
Phone: (307) 766-3114
E-mail: esm@uwyo.edu
Web Site: www.uwyo.edu/esm/

The purpose of this program is to enhance the cross-disciplinary linkage between range and forest management and water resources, and to provide students with a degree program in rangeland ecology and watershed management which emphasizes the important issues in water resources.

Coursework and Thesis

Water Resources requirements*: 10
Statistics 3
Range Management Seminar (REWM 5620) 1
Other recommended graduate courses or substitution courses with adviser consent 12
Plan A thesis credit 4
Minimum 30

Interdisciplinary component

9 hours
(see Water Resources degree requirements)

Soil Science/Water Resources

Department of Ecosystem Science and Management
2013 Agriculture C Building
Phone: (307) 766-3114
E-mail: esm@uwyo.edu
Web Address: www.uwyo.edu/esm/

The purpose of this program is to enhance the cross-disciplinary linkage between soil science and water resources, and to provide students a soil science degree program which emphasizes the important issues in water resources.

Coursework and Thesis

Each student must complete a minimum of 26 credit hours of graduate level coursework and 4 thesis credit hours of SOIL 5960 to qualify for a master of science degree in soil science/water resources. Specific coursework will be determined by the student's graduate committee; however, each student is required to enhance his/her background and expertise in the water resources area through specialized coursework and a seminar as shown below.

A. Core Courses - Students must take or have taken equivalent courses in the four soils disciplines: physics, pedology, chemistry, and microbiology
SOIL 5100 Soil Physics 4
SOIL 5120 Genesis, Morphology, and Classification of Soils 3
SOIL 5130 Chemistry of the Soil Environment 3
SOIL 5140 Soil Microbiology 4
B. Enhancement courses - students must take at least one of the following courses:
SOIL 5110 Modeling Flow Transport in Soil and Groundwater Systems
SOIL 5150 Forest and Range Soils
SOIL 5160 Soild Fertility and Fertilizers
SOIL 5170 Analytical Methods for Ecosystems Research
C. Interdisciplinary component (9 hours) (See Water Resources degree requirements)
D. REWM 5250 Seminar in Water Resources 1
E. SOIL 5720 Graduate Seminar in Soil Science 1

Plan A Thesis Requirement

Only Plan A thesis students are eligible for the master of science in soil science/water resources. In addition to coursework and a Plan A thesis, students must pass a final oral examination. The student's graduate committee will include at least one member of the Water Resources Curriculum Committee to help ensure adherence to the master of science in soil science/water resources degree requirements and that research efforts are in the water area.

Zoology and Physiology/Water Resources

Department of Zoology and Physiology
428 Biological Sciences Building
Phone: (307) 766-4207
E-mail: zprequest@uwyo.edu
Web Address: www.uwyo.edu/zoology

The purpose of this program is to broaden the master of science program in the water resources area by having students take 10 semester hours of coursework associated with water resources.

Coursework and Thesis

Each student must complete a minimum of 26 hours of graduate level coursework and 4 hours of Plan A thesis credit to qualify for the master of science in zoology and physiology/water resources. Specific coursework requirements will be determined by the student's graduate committee. The student must obtain at least 10 credit hours as indicated. Depending upon the student's undergraduate background and career interests, the graduate committee may require that these 10 credits be part of, or in addition to, the 26 credit hours required for a master of science in zoology and physiology.

Interdisciplinary Component

9 hours
(see Water Resources degree requirements)

The Willard C. and Elaine N. Rhoads Scholarship for Graduate Students in Water Resources at the University of Wyoming

The Willard C. and Elaine N. Rhoads Scholarship for Graduate Studies in Water Resources was established to honor Willard Rhoads, a member of the Research Review and Priorities Committee for the Wyoming Water Resources Center and a long-time member of the Wyoming Water Development Commission. Funds for the Rhoads Scholarship were donated to the University of Wyoming by Mrs. Rhoads and her family and friends, with some matching funds provided by the university. Two annual awards for the academic year will be made in the amount of $1,000 to a master's degree candidates for use in furthering research on Wyoming's water resources.

Eligibility Requirements and Evaluation Procedures

The applicant must be accepted into the interdisciplinary water resources major program administered jointly by the Graduate School and the student's academic department.

The applicant must agree to take a minimum of 9 credit hours (including thesis credits) in each of the two semesters for which the award applies.

Applicants for the scholarship can apply more than once, with the exception of past recipients.

The recipient will be chosen by a selection committee appointed by the Water Resources Curriculum Committee.

Applicants meeting the eligibility requirements above will be judged on the basis of promise of academic excellence as evident in grades for graduate level courses, and a recommendation from the student's graduate adviser.

Funds for the academic year will be dispersed to the recipient equally in the fall and spring semesters for half of the total amount.

Application Guidelines

Applicants meeting the above requirements should submit the following:

Application deadline is April 1.

A letter from the applicant listing the name of the scholarship for which he/she is applying, which includes a statement that the applicant agrees to enroll for a minimum of nine hours of graduate level courses (including thesis credits) in each of the two semesters for which the award applies, and a statement of academic and career goals related to water research. The applicant must also state the purpose for which the scholarship funds will be used.

An official transcript of grades for graduate level courses earned at the University of Wyoming or other institutions.

A note from the Graduate School or the academic department, verifying that the applicant has been accepted into a water resources interdisciplinary major program.

A confidential letter of recommendation from the applicant's graduate adviser addressing the applicant's promise for attaining academic and career goals through his/her research in water resources. Up to two additional letters of recommendation can be provided at the applicant's discretion.

The applicant should arrange for all materials to be sent to:

K.J. Reddy
Chair, Rhoads Scholarship Committee
Department of Ecosystem Science and Management
Dept. 3354, 1000 E. University Ave.
Laramie , WY 82071-3354

Water Resources Program Executive Committee Members:
Scott N. Miller, Chair, Ecosystem Science and Management
Don McLeod, Agricultural and Applied Economics
Carol Frost, Geology and Geophysics
William Gribb, Geography 
Wayne Hubert, Zoology and Physiology
Drew Johnson, Civil and Architectural Engineering
David Legg, Ecosystem Science and Management

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