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* Special Course Codes
(Code indicates course meets certain program or accreditation requirements. Ignore if there is no relevance to this program of study.)

G = General Education course (GenEd)
E = Engineering
ES
= Engineering Sciences
M = Mathematics
NS = Natural Sciences
PE = Professional Education
S = Summer-only course

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Department of Environmental and Forest Biology

Web Catalog Information Subject to Change

The web version of the ESF Catalog is updated as needed throughout the year. To view the version officially associated with a particular date of entry to the College, please refer to the appropriate catalog of record.

Department of Environmental and Forest Biology

DONALD J. LEOPOLD, Chair
242 Illick Hall, 315-470-6760; FAX 317-470-6934

The critical importance of natural resources and environmental quality to modern society demands that aspiring biologists both understand natural ecosystems and learn to be effective problem solvers. The Department of Environmental and Forest Biology (EFB) is committed to ensuring these educational outcomes. The department offers a dynamic array of professional opportunities in biology via course work enriched by an active program of research.

microscope

Through a suite of electives in addition to a required core, undergraduate students may customize their studies toward a particular field of interest. Graduate students may pursue master's or doctoral degrees within several areas of study.

Undergraduate Programs

The Department of Environmental and Forest Biology (EFB) offers seven undergraduate majors. Environmental biology is the broadest major and the degree program to which most students apply. The other six majors are specialized and are recommended only for students with strongly focused educational goals. They are aquatic and fisheries science, biotechnology, conservation biology, environmental education and interpretation, forest health, and wildlife science. For the first year or two the requirements of these programs are similar to those of environmental biology and internal transfer among them is simple.

Pre-health Professions

Degrees in environmental biology or biotechnology prepare students for a variety of professional schools in health-related areas, including human and veterinary medicine. For complete information about this opportunity, go to:

Internships and Research Opportunities

A variety of internships are available, either in the summer or academic year. These are arranged in cooperation with the student’s advisor and may carry course credits under EFB 420 Internship in Environmental and Forest Biology. Agencies actively involved with the internship program include the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Upstate Freshwater Institute, The Nature Conservancy, the National Park Service and the U.S. Geological Survey. Internships also are commonly associated with a local zoo. Field-based internships can, with approval, count toward the three-credit field experience elective required by most EFB degree programs.

Faculty and graduate students also frequently employ undergraduate students on hourly wage to help with research projects. Students who are inclined toward graduate school should talk to professors in their area of interest about opportunities for undergraduate research (EFB 498).

Field Experience

A hallmark of the EFB curriculum is its emphasis on field study and training. All majors offered by the Department of Environmental and Forest Biology are intended to be hands-on programs that emphasize laboratory and field experience in addition to classroom studies. To this end, every student in each major except Biotechnology is required to complete at least six credit-hours of approved field-based instruction in biology. Three of these six credits are associated with a required core course, EFB 202 (Ecological Monitoring and Biodiversity Assessment), which is offered twice each summer at the Cranberry Lake Biological Station (CLBS) in the Adirondack Mountains. We recommend students enroll in EFB 202 during the summer between freshman and sophomore years, or as early as possible if you are a transfer student.

The remaining credit hours of Field Experience are elective, and can be obtained in one of the following ways. The following lists identify recent course offerings that satisfy the EFB field elective requirement. Be aware that some of these courses may not be offered every year.

  • Courses offered at CLBS during summer session:
    • Field Ethnobotany (EFB337)
    • Forest Health (EFB345)
    • Field Herpetology (EFB384)
    • Adirondack Fishes (EFB388)
    • Fisheries Science Practicum (EFB488, 1-cr)
    • Wildlife Techniques (EFB496)
    • Ecology of Adirondack Aquatic Ecosystems (EFB496)
    • Wetland Plants and Communities of the Adirondacks (EFB496)
    • Ecology of Adirondack Insects (EFB496)
    • Please note that, although Philosophy and Environmental Writing (EFB496) is frequently offered at CLBS, this course does not fulfill the field elective requirement.
    • For more information about the CLBS program, visit: www.esf.edu/clbs
  • Courses offered at the Adirondack Ecological Center:
    • Research Methods: Understanding the Adirondack Ecosystem (EFB411)
    • Mammalian Winter Ecology (EFB484)
  • Courses offered during Maymester at the Syracuse or regional campuses:
    • Interpreting Field Biology (EFB418)
    • Forest Health Monitoring (EFB439)
    • Field Ornithology (EFB496)
    • Flora of Central New York (EFB496)
  • Other courses offered by ESF faculty:
    • Restoring Ecosystems: Principles and Practice (EFB496)
    • Periodic field trips courses (EFB500) to locations such as Costa Rica, Ireland, Russia, New Zealand, Australia
    • Adirondack Forest Ecology and Management (EFB/FOR 513, 2-cr)
    • Tropical Ecology (EFB 523)
    • Ecological Engineering in the Tropics (ERE311)
  • Field courses, approved by petition, from another accredited university, including but not limited to the following affiliated programs. Acceptable biology field courses will have at least 50% of instruction conducted in the field (out-of-classroom, out-of-laboratory, out-of-clinic, out-of-captivity); and include content that focuses on organismal biology, ecology theory, and/or training in field methodologies for studying populations, ecological communities or ecosystem processes:
    • SEA Semester (through Boston University)
    • The School for Field Studies (through University of Minnesota)
    • Wildlands Studies (through California State University Monterey Bay)
  • An independent research project (EFB 498) or internship (EFB 420) that has received prior departmental approval via petition, and that meets the following departmental criteria.
    • At least 50% of student effort (including contact time with instructor and self-directed study) must be conducted in the field (out-of-classroom, out-of-laboratory, out-of-clinic, out-of-captivity).
    • Student must demonstrate learning gains in organismal biology, ecological theory, and/or application of field methodologies to study populations, ecological communities or ecosystem processes.
    • Students must complete a research or professional product for evaluation.
    • 40 hours of effort will garner 1 academic credit-hour.

Bachelor of Science in Aquatic and Fisheries Science

Aquatic and fisheries science is the study of aquatic ecosystems to increase scientific understanding and to apply basic ecological principles to their management, thereby sustaining them for multiple uses. Aquatic ecosystems include wetlands, streams, lakes, estuaries and oceans. Aquatic science professionals study and manage valued natural systems for seafoods, drinking water, recreation, transportation and aesthetics. Aquatic systems and their organisms are sufficiently distinct from terrestrial systems that numerous professional organizations and scientific journals have been founded specifically to foster communication among aquatic science professionals.

Required Courses

CourseCodes*Credits
APM 105Survey of Calculus and Its Applications I G4
APM 391Introduction to Probability and Statistics G3
EFB 101General Biology I: Organismal Biology and EcologyG3
EFB 102General Biology I LaboratoryG1
EFB 103General Biology II: Cell Biology and Genetics G3
EFB 104General Biology II Laboratory G1
EFB 120The Global Environment and the Evolution of Human Society G3
EFB 132Orientation Seminar: Environmental and Forest Biology 1
EFB 202Ecological Monitoring and Biodiversity Assessment S3
EFB 210Diversity of Life I 3
EFB 211Diversity of Life II 3
EFB 307Principles of Genetics 3
EFB 308Principles of Genetics Laboratory 1
EFB 311Principles of Evolution 3
EFB 320 General Ecology 4
EFB 325 Cell Biology 3
EFB 424Limnology: Study of Inland Waters 3
EFB 486Ichthyology 3
EFB 492Senior Synthesis in Aquatic and Fisheries Science 1
EWP 190Writing and the Environment G3
EWP 290Research Writing and HumanitiesG3
FCH 150General Chemistry I G3
FCH 151General Chemistry Laboratory I G1
FCH 152General Chemistry II G3
FCH 153General Chemistry Laboratory II G1
FCH 210Elements of Organic Chemistry 4
FOR 207Introduction to Economics G3
PHY 101Major Concepts of Physics I 4
PHY 102
OR
FCH 223
AND
FCH 224
OR
APM 106
Major Concepts of Physics II

Organic Chemistry II

Organic Chemistry Laboratory II

Survey of Calculus and Its Applications II







4

3

1

4

Electives

Course Codes* Credits
General Education Course in two of the following categories: American History, The Arts, Western Civilization, Other World Civilizations G 6
Directed Electives 27
Open Electives 15
Directed Electives

To ensure both strength and breadth of knowledge, 27 elective credit hours must be obtained through courses in the following subject areas (S=spring semester, F=fall semester).

  • Field Experience Elective
    At least three elective credits must come from an approved field course in biology (this is in addition to the core field course, EFB 202). These credits may be obtained through an elective course at our Cranberry Lake Biological Station, an approved internship (EFB 420) or field trip course (EFB 500). Winter Mammalian Ecology (EFB 484) and Tropical Ecology (EFB 523) meet this requirement, as can approved field courses from other institutions.
  • Structure and Function
    At least 3 credit hours must be in the subject area of organism-level physiology, anatomy, or development. The list of allowable courses below may vary slightly from year to year.
    • EFB 385—Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 427—Plant Anatomy and Development (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 462—Animal Physiology: Environmental and Ecological (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 530—Plant Physiology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 570—Insect Physiology (3 cr.) S
    • BIO 447—Immunology (3 cr.) S
    • BIO 503—Developmental Biology (3 cr.) S
  • Organismal Diversity
    To encourage breadth in organism-level biology, students must complete (in addition to the core requirement of EFB  486 or EFB 388) at least 3 credit hours in each of the following two categories:
    • 1. Plants and Microbes:
      • EFB 303—Introductory Environmental Microbiology (4 cr.) F
      • EFB 326—Diversity of Plants (3 cr.) S
      • EFB 336—Dendrology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 340—Forest and Shade Tree Pathology (3 cr.) S
      • EFB 428—Mycorrhizal Ecology (3 cr) F even years
      • EFB 435—Flowering Plants: Diversity, Evolution, and Systematics (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 440—Mycology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 446—Ecology of Mosses (3 cr.) S
    • 2. Invertebrate and Vertebrate Animals:
      • EFB 351—Forest Entomology (3 cr.) F, even years
      • EFB 352—Elements of Entomology (3 cr.) F, odd years
      • EFB 355—Invertebrate Zoology (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 388—Ecology of Adirondack Fishes (3 cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 453—Parasitology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 482—Ornithology (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 483—Mammal Diversity (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 485—Herpetology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 554—Aquatic Entomology (3 cr.) F
  • Physical/Chemical Environment
    To encourage understanding and familiarity with the aquatic habitat, students must complete at least 3 credit hours from one of the following courses:
    • EFB 415—Ecological Biogeochemistry (3 cr.) F
    • EST 231—Environmental Geology (3 cr.) S
    • FCH 510—Environmental Chemistry I (3 cr.) S
    • FCH 515—Methods of Environmental Chemical Analysis (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 338—Meteorology (3 cr.) S
    • FOR 340—Watershed Hydrology (3 cr.) S
    • FOR 345—Introduction to Soils (3 cr.) F
    • EAR 101—Dynamic Earth (3 cr.) F
    • EAR 105—Earth Science (3 cr.) S
  • Environmental Systems Science
    To further promote understanding of the systems approach to aquatic ecosystems and an integration of environmental and biological factors, students must complete at least 3 credit hours from one of the following courses.
    • EFB 423—Marine Ecology (4 cr.) S, even years
    • EFB 516—Ecosystems (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 518—Systems Ecology (4 cr.) F
    • EFB 542—Freshwater Wetland Ecosystems (3 cr.) S
    • ERE 325—Ecological Engineering  I (3 cr.) S
  • Management
    At least 3 credit hours in resource or ecosystem management must be obtained through a course in the following list.
    • EFB 487—Fisheries Science and Management (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 390—Wildlife Ecology and Management (4 cr.) F
    • FOR 360—Principles of Management (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 372—Fundamentals of Outdoor Rec. (3 cr.) F,S
    • FOR 442—Watershed Ecology & Management (3 cr.) F 
  • Analytical Tools
    To increase the breadth of practical skills and knowledge students must complete at least 3 credit hours, obtained through one of the following courses:
    • BTC 401—Molecular Biology Techniques (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 488—Fisheries Science Practicum (1 cr.) F
    • EFB 519—Geographic Modeling (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 525—Limnology Practicum (2 cr.) F
    • ERE 445—Hydrological Modeling (3 cr.) F
    • ESF 300—Introduction to Geospatial Information Technologies (3 cr.) F,S
  • Communications
    Students must complete at least 3 credit hours from one of the following communication or interpretation courses.
    • EFB 312—Introduction to Personal Environmental Interpretation Methods (3 cr.) F
    • EWP 220—Public Presentation Skills for Environmental Professionals (3 cr.) F,S
    • EWP 407—Writing for Environmental and Science Professionals (3 cr.) F

Total Minimum Credits For Degree: 126

Bachelor of Science in Biotechnology

Biotechnology is the application of biological organisms, cells, or molecules to create products or services for the betterment of humans. The bachelor of science degree in biotechnology prepares students to tackle environmental, natural resource, agricultural and medical problems through training in molecular biology, cell biology, biochemistry, genetic engineering and related biological disciplines. As biotechnology is increasingly used to address such issues, it offers diverse career opportunities. The curriculum emphasizes the basic sciences with a strong foundation in biology, chemistry, calculus, and physics that prepares students for upper-level biology and chemistry courses, but encourages elective breadth in the social sciences, humanities, and environmental studies. The degree program provides sufficient breadth for a student to enter a clinical medical career, or other health profession. Students who complete this major will be qualified to enter the growing biotechnology-related job market or continue their studies in graduate or professional school.

Internships, Independent Research, and Senior Project Synthesis

The biotechnology major features a strong practical experience component. Each student is required to fulfill an internship, which could be in a local, national, or international company, medical unit, or government research laboratory. The objective of this internship is to give students experience working outside a purely academic setting. In addition, each student is required to perform one independent research project in a local, national, or international academic laboratory. The objective of the research requirement is to teach the student to develop and meet a research goal using the scientific method. During the senior year, each student is required to complete a senior project synthesis in which the results from either the internship or independent research—or both—will be organized and presented as a seminar or poster.

Required Courses

CourseCodes*Credits
APM 105Survey of Calculus and Its Applications I G4
APM 106Survey of Calculus and Its Applications II 4
APM 391Introduction to Probability and Statistics G3
BTC 132Orientation Seminar 1
BTC 401Molecular Biology Techniques 4
BTC 420Internship in Biotechnology 3
BTC 497Research Design and Professional Development 1
BTC 498Research Problems in Biotechnology 3
BTC 499Senior Project Synthesis 1
EFB 101General Biology I: Organismal Biology and EcologyG3
EFB 102General Biology I LaboratoryG1
EFB 103General Biology II: Cell Biology and Genetics G3
EFB 104General Biology II Laboratory G1
EFB 210
OR
EFB 211
Diversity of Life I

Diversity of Life II



3

3
EFB 303Introductory Environmental Microbiology 4
EFB 307Principles of Genetics 3
EFB 308Principles of Genetics Laboratory 1
EFB 320 General Ecology 4
EFB 325 Cell Biology 3
EWP 190Writing and the Environment G3
EWP 290Research Writing and HumanitiesG3
FCH 150General Chemistry I G3
FCH 151General Chemistry Laboratory I G1
FCH 152General Chemistry II G3
FCH 153General Chemistry Laboratory II G1
FCH 221Organic Chemistry I 3
FCH 222Organic Chemistry Laboratory I 1
FCH 223Organic Chemistry II 3
FCH 224Organic Chemistry Laboratory II 1
FCH 530Biochemistry I 3
FCH 532Biochemistry II 3
PHY 101Major Concepts of Physics I 4
PHY 102Major Concepts of Physics II 4

BTC 420 (Internship in Biotechnology) is typically done in the summer.

Electives

Course Codes* Credits
General Education Course in three of the following categories: American History, The Arts, Western Civilization, Other World Civilizations G 9
Directed Electives 9
Open Electives 19
Directed Electives - Biotechnology

A minimum of 9 credits of directed elective courses required. New biotechnology related courses not currently on the list may also fulfill this requirement with permission of your advisor.

Although any combination of courses below may satisfy the minimum 9 credits required, the following list has been categorized into 3 of the most common subject areas of interest to BTC students. These groupings of elective courses are guidelines. Probably no two students in the biotechnology program have exactly the same career goals or interests. Consult your advisor if your subject interests vary.

Areas of study:

Plant Biotechnology
  • BTC 425 Plant Biotechnology (3 cr.) S
  • BTC 426 Intro. Plant Tissue Culture (3 cr.) F
  • EFB 311 Principles of Evolution (3 cr.) S
  • EFB 427 Plant Anatomy and Development (3 cr.) F
  • EFB 530 Plant Physiology (2 cr.) S
  • FCH 380 Analytical Chemistry I (3 cr.) F
  • FCH 381 Analytical Chemistry II (3 cr.) S
  • FCH 531 Biochemistry (3 cr.) S
  • BIO 422 Bioinformatics for Life Scientists (3 cr.) S - SU course
Microbial Biotechnology
  • EFB 311 Principles of Evolution (3 cr.) S
  • EFB 340 Forest and Shade Tree Pathology (3 cr.) S
  • EFB 403 Microbiol Diseases/Fish & Wildlife (1 cr.) S
  • EFB 428 Mycorrhizal Ecology (3 cr.) F
  • EFB 440 Mycology (3 cr.) F
  • EFB 505 Microbial Ecology (2 cr.) S
  • FCH 380 Analytical Chemistry I (3 cr.)
  • FCH 381 Analytical Chemistry II (3 cr.)
  • FCH 531 Biochemistry Lab (3 cr.) F
  • BIO 422 Bioinformatics for Life Scientists (3 cr.) S - SU Course
Prehealth or PreVet
  • EFB 311 Principles of Evolution (3 cr.) S
  • EFB 385 Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy (4 cr.) S
  • EFB 400 Toxic Health Hazards (3 cr.) F
  • EFB 403 Microbiol Diseases/Fish & Wildlife (1 cr.) S
  • EFB 453 Parasitology (3 cr.) F
  • EFB 462 Animal Physiology: Environmental & Ecological (3 cr.) F
  • FCH 390 Drugs from the Wild (3 cr.) F
  • BIO 211 Introduction to Neuroscience (3 cr.) S - SU Course
  • BIO 355 General Physiology (3 cr.) S - SU Course
  • BIO 447 Basic Immunology (3 cr.) F - SU Course
  • BIO 448 Evolutionary Medicine (3 cr.) F - SU Course
  • BIO 501 Biology of Cancer (3 cr.) S - SU course
Other Acceptable Directed Electives
  • BPE 441 Biomass Energy (3 cr.) S
  • FCH 510 Environmental Chemistry (3 cr.)
  • BIO 464 Applied Biotechnology (4 cr.) S - SU Course

Total Minimum Credits For Degree: 123

Bachelor of Science in Conservation Biology

Conservation biology is the application of science to conserve the earth's imperiled species and ecosystems. The field is a relatively young one that is growing rapidly in response to the biodiversity crisis, perhaps the most critical environmental issue of our time. Conservation biologists view all of nature's diversity as important and having inherent value. This diversity spans the biological hierarchy and includes variation at the level of genes, populations, communities, ecosystems, and biomes.

Required Courses

CourseCodes*Credits
APM 105Survey of Calculus and Its Applications I G4
APM 391Introduction to Probability and Statistics G3
EFB 101General Biology I: Organismal Biology and EcologyG3
EFB 102General Biology I LaboratoryG1
EFB 103General Biology II: Cell Biology and Genetics G3
EFB 104General Biology II Laboratory G1
EFB 120The Global Environment and the Evolution of Human Society G3
EFB 132Orientation Seminar: Environmental and Forest Biology 1
EFB 200Physics of Life 3
EFB 202Ecological Monitoring and Biodiversity Assessment S3
EFB 210Diversity of Life I 3
EFB 211Diversity of Life II 3
EFB 307Principles of Genetics 3
EFB 308Principles of Genetics Laboratory 1
EFB 311Principles of Evolution 3
EFB 320 General Ecology 4
EFB 413Introduction to Conservation Biology 3
EFB 414Senior Synthesis in Conservation Biology 3
EFB 419Problem-solving in Conservation Biology 3
EFB 420
OR
EFB 498
Internship in Environmental and Forest Biology

Research Problems in Environmental and Forest Biology



3

3
EWP 190Writing and the Environment G3
EWP 290Research Writing and HumanitiesG3
FCH 150General Chemistry I G3
FCH 151General Chemistry Laboratory I G1
FCH 152General Chemistry II G3
FCH 153General Chemistry Laboratory II G1

Electives

Course Codes* Credits
General Education Course in two of the following categories: American History, The Arts, Western Civilization, Other World Civilizations G 6
Directed Electives 30
Open Electives 22
Directed Electives

To ensure that Conservation Biology undergraduates obtain both strength and breadth of knowledge, 30 elective credit hours must be distributed in a way that satisfies seven requirements (A-F, below).

  • Field Experience Elective
    At least three elective credits from an approved field course in biology (in addition to the core field course, EFB 202). These credits are typically obtained through an elective course at our Cranberry Lake Biological Station, an approved internship (EFB 420) or field trip course (EFB 500). Approved field courses from other institutions can also fulfill this requirement. No single class may be used to fulfill directed elective requirements of A and B.
  • Biodiversity Specialization (at least three courses from the following list)
    The availability of courses that satisfy this requirement varies. The suggestions below are pre-approved courses that are typically taken - consult with your advisor or the curriculum coordinator about other possibilities. Many other courses can potentially substitute (by petition) for those listed. No single class may be used to fulfill directed elective requirements of A and B.
    • EFB 303 Introductory Environmental Microbiology (4 cr.) F
    • EFB 326 Diversity of Plants (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 327 Adirondack Flora (3 cr.) CLBS
    • EFB 336 Dendrology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 340 Forest and Shade Tree Pathology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 342 Fungal Diversity and Ecology (3 cr.) CLBS
    • EFB 351 Forest Entomology (3 cr.) F, even years
    • EFB 352 Elements of Entomology (3 cr.) F, odd years
    • EFB 355 Invertebrate Zoology (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 384 Field Herpetology (3 cr.) CLBS
    • EFB 388 Ecology of Adirondack Fisheries (3 cr.) CLBS
    • EFB 440 Mycology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 441 Field Plant Pathology (3 cr.) CLBS
    • EFB 446 Ecology of Mosses (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 453 Parasitology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 479 Field Ornithology (3 cr.) CLBS
    • EFB 482 Ornithology (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 483 Mammal Diversity (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 485 Herpetology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 486 Ichthyology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 535 Flowering Plants: Diversity, Evolution, and Systematics (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 554 Aquatic Entomology (3 cr.) F
  • Applied Conservation Biology (at least 6 credits)
    • EFB 390 Wildlife Ecology and Management (4 cr.) F
    • EFB 423 Marine Ecology (4 cr.) S, even years
    • EFB 424 Limnology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 444 Biodiversity and Geography of Nature (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 480 Animal Behavior (3 cr) S
    • EFB 487 Fisheries Science & Management (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 493 Management of Wildlife Habitats & Populations (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 502 Ecology and Management of Invasive Species (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 522 Ecology, Resources and Development (2 cr.) S
    • EFB 542 Freshwater Wetland Ecosystems (3 cr.) S
    • FOR 321 Forest Ecology and Silviculture (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 332 Forest Ecology (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 442 Watershed Ecology and Management (3 cr.) F
  • Human Dimensions (at least 3 credits)
    • EFB 404 Nat Hist Museums of Modern Sci (3 cr.) S
    • EST 353 Environ Psychology (3 cr.) S
    • EST 366 Attitudes, Values, & Env. (3 cr.) S
    • EST 390 Social Processes and Environment (3 cr.) S
    • EST 460 Land Use Law (3 cr.) S
    • EWP 390 Intro to Literature of Nature (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 312 Sociology/Natural Resources (3 cr.) S
    • FOR 360 Principles of Management (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 465 Natural Resources and Environ. Policy (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 487 Environmental Law and Policy (3cr.) F
    • FOR 489 Natural Resources Law and Policy (3cr.) S
  • Communications and Interpretation (at least 3 credits)
    • EFB 312 Introduction to Personal Environmental Interpretation Methods (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 417 Non-Personal Environmental Interpretation Methods (3 cr.) S
    • EWP 220 Public Presentation Skills (3 cr.) F,S
    • EWP 407 Writing for Environmental and Science Professionals (3 cr.) F,S
  • Technical Skills (at least 3 credits)
    • BTC 401 Molecular Biol. Techniques (3 cr.) S
    • BTC 425 Plant Biotechnology (3 cr.) S
    • BTC 426 Plant Tissue Culture Methods (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 518 System Ecology (4 cr.) F
    • ERE 445 Hydrological Modeling (3 cr.) F
    • ESF 300 Introduction to Geospatial Information Technologies (3 cr.) F,S
    • ERE 563 Photogrammetry (3 cr.) S

Total Minimum Credits For Degree: 126

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Biology

The curriculum for the bachelor of science degree in environmental biology is built around a core of required courses that provides a general education, a background in the principles of biological and physical science, and an orientation to natural resources and other environmental concerns. From this common foundation, the large number of elective credits allows each student to develop a unique plan of study, with the help of an assigned advisor who is expert in the student’s general area of interest. In keeping with the hands-on, field orientation of our curriculum, students also must complete six credit hours of field experience.

Required Courses

CourseCodes*Credits
APM 105Survey of Calculus and Its Applications I G4
APM 391Introduction to Probability and Statistics G3
EFB 101General Biology I: Organismal Biology and EcologyG3
EFB 102General Biology I LaboratoryG1
EFB 103General Biology II: Cell Biology and Genetics G3
EFB 104General Biology II Laboratory G1
EFB 120The Global Environment and the Evolution of Human Society G3
EFB 132Orientation Seminar: Environmental and Forest Biology 1
EFB 200Physics of Life 3
EFB 202Ecological Monitoring and Biodiversity Assessment S3
EFB 210Diversity of Life I 3
EFB 211Diversity of Life II 3
EFB 307Principles of Genetics 3
EFB 308Principles of Genetics Laboratory 1
EFB 311Principles of Evolution 3
EFB 320 General Ecology 4
EFB 325 Cell Biology 3
EWP 190Writing and the Environment G3
EWP 290Research Writing and HumanitiesG3
FCH 150General Chemistry I G3
FCH 151General Chemistry Laboratory I G1
FCH 152General Chemistry II G3
FCH 153General Chemistry Laboratory II G1
FCH 210Elements of Organic Chemistry 4
PHY 102
OR
FCH 223
AND
FCH 224
OR
APM 106
Major Concepts of Physics II

Organic Chemistry II

Organic Chemistry Laboratory II

Survey of Calculus and Its Applications II







4

3

1

4

Electives

Course Codes* Credits
General Education Course in two of the following categories: American History, The Arts, Western Civilization, Other World Civilizations G 6
Directed Electives 25
Open Electives 28
Directed Electives

To ensure that ENB undergraduates obtain both strength and breadth of knowledge, 25 elective credit hours in biology must be obtained through courses designed for juniors or seniors (i.e., courses numbered 300 or higher). Among them must be courses that satisfy requirements A-C (below).

  • Field Experience Elective
    At least 3 elective credits must come from an approved field biology course (in addition to the core field course, EFB 202). These credits may be obtained through an elective course at Cranberry Lake Biological Station; an approved field course from another accredited institution; an approved internship (EFB 420) or independent research project (EFB498); or a field trip course (EFB 500). Some courses at CLBS meet both requirement A and a diversity requirement.
  • Structure and Function
    At least 3 credit hours must be in the subject area of organism-level physiology, anatomy, or development. The list of allowable courses below may vary slightly from year to year.
    • EFB 385 Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 427 Plant Anatomy and Development (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 462 Animal Physiology: Environmental and Ecological (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 530 Plant Physiology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 570 Insect Physiology (3 cr.) S
    • BIO 447 Immunology (3 cr.) F
    • BIO 503 Developmental Biology (3 cr.) S
  • Organismal Diversity
    To encourage breadth in organism-level biology, students must complete at least one course from two of the four groups. (A course from each of the groups is strongly recommended).
    • Diversity of Microorganisms
      • EFB 303 Introductory Environmental Microbiology (4 cr.) F
      • EFB 340 Forest and Shade Tree Pathology (3 cr.) S
      • EFB 342 Fungal Diversity and Ecology (3cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 428 Mycorrhizal Ecology (3 cr) F even years
      • EFB 440 Mycology (3 cr.) F
    • Diversity of Plants
      • EFB 326 Diversity of Plants (3 cr.) S
      • EFB 336 Dendrology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 327 Adirondack Flora (3 cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 435 Flowering Plants: Diversity, Evolution, and Systematics (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 446 Ecology of Mosses (3 cr.) S
    • Diversity of Invertebrate Animals
      • EFB 351 Forest Entomology (3 cr.) F, even years
      • EFB 352 Elements of Entomology (3 cr.) F, odd years
      • EFB 355 Invertebrate Zoology (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 453 Parasitology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 554 Aquatic Entomology (3 cr.) F
    • Diversity of Vertebrate Animals
      • EFB 384 Field Herpetology (3 cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 388 Ecology of Adirondack Fishes (3 cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 479 Field Ornithology (3 cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 482 Ornithology (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 483 Mammal Diversity (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 485 Herpetology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 486 Ichthyology (3 cr.) S

Note that some courses at CLBS meet both requirement A and a diversity requirement.

Total Minimum Credits For Degree: 126

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Education and Interpretation

This program was formerly known as Natural History and Interpretation.

Environmental Education teaches people of all ages about the natural environment, so that they can make informed decisions on how to care for it. Interpretation is a communications process that reveals meanings and relationships about natural, cultural, historical, and recreational resources. Interpretation and environmental education work hand-in-hand to help make connections between the world of science and the public. Through the art of interpretation, students will learn how to help people make connections with the natural world and science through educational programs and materials.

Required Courses

CourseCodes*Credits
APM 105Survey of Calculus and Its Applications I G4
APM 391Introduction to Probability and Statistics G3
EFB 101General Biology I: Organismal Biology and EcologyG3
EFB 102General Biology I LaboratoryG1
EFB 103General Biology II: Cell Biology and Genetics G3
EFB 104General Biology II Laboratory G1
EFB 120The Global Environment and the Evolution of Human Society G3
EFB 132Orientation Seminar: Environmental and Forest Biology 1
EFB 200Physics of Life 3
EFB 202Ecological Monitoring and Biodiversity Assessment S3
EFB 210Diversity of Life I 3
EFB 211Diversity of Life II 3
EFB 307Principles of Genetics 3
EFB 308Principles of Genetics Laboratory 1
EFB 311Principles of Evolution 3
EFB 312Introduction to Personal Environmental Interpretation Methods 3
EFB 320 General Ecology 4
EFB 404Natural History Museums and Modern Science 3
EFB 417Non-Personal Environmental Interpretive Methods 3
EFB 420Internship in Environmental and Forest Biology 3
EWP 190Writing and the Environment G3
EWP 290Research Writing and HumanitiesG3
EWP 390Literature of Nature 3
FCH 150General Chemistry I G3
FCH 151General Chemistry Laboratory I G1
FCH 152General Chemistry II G3
FCH 153General Chemistry Laboratory II G1
FOR 372Fundamentals of Outdoor Recreation 3

Electives

Course Codes* Credits
General Education Course in one of the following categories: American History, The Arts G 6
Directed Electives 27
Open Electives 22
Directed Electives - Environmental Education & Interpretation
  • Conservation Biology
    At least 3 credit hours must be in the subject area of advanced conservation biology. Allowable courses are listed below. The list may vary slightly from year to year.
    • EFB 390 Wildlife Ecology & Management (4 cr.) F
    • EFB 413 Introduction to Conservation Biology (4 cr.) S
  • Advanced Communication
    At least 3 credit hours must be in the subject area of advanced communication. Allowable courses are listed below. The list may vary slightly from year to year
    • CMN 420 Advanced Public Presentation Skills (3 cr.) F
    • EST 496 Science Communication (3cr.) S
    • EWP 407 Writing for Environmental and Science Professionals (3 cr.) F,S
    • EWP 494 Creative Non-fiction in the Sciences (3 cr.) S
    • LSA 300 Digital Methods and Graphics I (3 cr.) F
  • Advanced Interpretation
    At least 3 credit hours must be in the subject area of advanced interpretation. Allowable courses are listed below. The list may vary slightly from year to year.
    • EFB 418 Interpreting Field Biology (3 cr.) Maymester
    • EFB 560 Electronic Technology in Interpretation & Environmental Education (3 cr.) S
  • Organismal Diversity
    To encourage breadth in organism-level biology, students must complete 12 credit hours including at least one course from each of the four groups listed in the catalog (a course from each of the groups is strongly recommended). The lists may slightly from year to year. No single class may be used to fulfill directed elective requirements of D and E.
    • Diversity of Microorganisms
      • EFB 303 Introductory Environmental Microbiology (4 cr.) F
      • EFB 340 Forest and Shade Tree Pathology (3 cr.) S
      • EFB 342 Fungal Diversity and Ecology (3 cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 428 Mycorrhizal Ecology (3cr.) F, even years
      • EFB 440 Mycology (3 cr.) F
    • Diversity of Plants
      • EFB 326 Diversity of Plants (3 cr.) S
      • EFB 327 Adirondack Flora (3 cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 336 Dendrology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 446 Ecology of Mosses (3 cr.) S
      • EFB 535 Flowering Plants: Diversity, Evolution, and Systematics (3 cr.) F
    • Diversity of Invertebrate Animals
      • EFB 351 Principles of Forest Entomology (3 cr.) S
      • EFB 352 Elements of Entomology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 355 Invertebrate Zoology (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 453 Parasitology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 554 Aquatic Entomology (3 cr.) F
    • Diversity of Vertebrate Animals
      • EFB 388 Ecology of Adirondack Fishes (3 cr.) CLBS
      • EFB 482 Ornithology (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 483 Mammal Diversity (4 cr.) S
      • EFB 485 Herpetology (3 cr.) F
      • EFB 486 Ichthyology (3 cr.) S
  • Field Experience Elective (3 cr.)
    This elective is often taken during Maymester or at Cranberry Lake Biological Station, either during the post-freshman summer or subsequent summer. A secondary option is EFB 418, which can be taken during Maymester. Other options for this requirement need approval of the curriculum coordinator. No single class may be used to fulfill directed elective requirements of D and E.
  • Recreation and Tourism Management
    At least 3 credit hours must be in the subject area of recreation and tourism management. Allowable courses are listed below. The list may vary slightly from year to year.
    • FOR 475 Human Behavior and Recreation Visitor Management (3 cr.) S
    • FOR 476 Ecotourism and Nature Tourism (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 478 Wilderness and Wildlands Management (3 cr.) F

Total Minimum Credits For Degree: 126

Bachelor of Science in Forest Health

Forest health is a multidisciplinary and collaborative field of study that involves the understanding, monitoring, and protection of the world's forest resources. A solid foundation in forest health requires expertise in many disciplines including, but not limited to, plant pathology, entomology, ecology, dendrology, mycology, silviculture, and forest management. At ESF, we have provided academic training in these areas for decades, but only recently have they been merged into an academic major.

Required Courses

CourseCodes*Credits
APM 391Introduction to Probability and Statistics G3
EFB 101General Biology I: Organismal Biology and EcologyG3
EFB 102General Biology I LaboratoryG1
EFB 103General Biology II: Cell Biology and Genetics G3
EFB 104General Biology II Laboratory G1
EFB 120The Global Environment and the Evolution of Human Society G3
EFB 132Orientation Seminar: Environmental and Forest Biology 1
EFB 200Physics of Life 3
EFB 202Ecological Monitoring and Biodiversity Assessment S3
EFB 210Diversity of Life I 3
EFB 211Diversity of Life II 3
EFB 303Introductory Environmental Microbiology 4
EFB 307Principles of Genetics 3
EFB 308Principles of Genetics Laboratory 1
EFB 311Principles of Evolution 3
EFB 320 General Ecology 4
EFB 336Dendrology 3
EFB 340Forest and Shade Tree Pathology 3
EFB 345Forest Health S3
EFB 351
OR
EFB 352
Forest Entomology

Entomology



3

3
EFB 420
OR
EFB 498
Internship in Environmental and Forest Biology

Research Problems in Environmental and Forest Biology



3

3
EFB 439Forest Health Monitoring 3
EFB 494Senior Synthesis in Forest Health 1
EWP 190Writing and the Environment G3
EWP 290Research Writing and HumanitiesG3
FCH 150General Chemistry I G3
FCH 151General Chemistry Laboratory I G1
FCH 152General Chemistry II G3
FCH 153General Chemistry Laboratory II G1
FCH 210Elements of Organic Chemistry 4
FOR 321Forest Ecology and Silviculture 3
FOR 345Introduction to Soils 3

Electives

Course Codes* Credits
General Education Course in two of the following categories: American History, The Arts, Western Civilization, Other World Civilizations G 6
Directed Electives 15
Open Electives 20
Directed Electives

To ensure that Forest Health majors obtain both strength and breadth of knowledge, 15 elective credit hours must be selected from the following list, including at least one course from five of the seven categories.

  • Forest Protection and Conservation Biology
    • EFB 390 Wildlife Ecology & Management (4 cr.) F
    • EFB 413 Intro Conservation Biology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 502 Ecology and Management of Invasive Species (3 cr.) F
  • Forestry/Wood Products
    • FOR 322 Forest Mensuration (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 334 Silviculture (4 cr.) F
    • FOR 360 Principles of Management (3 cr.) F,S
    • FOR 455 Forest Genetics and Tree Improvement (3 cr.) S
    • FOR 465 Natural Resources and Policy (3 cr.) S
    • FOR 480 Urban Forestry (3 cr.)
    • CME 376 Decay of Wood Products (3 cr.) S
  • Technology
    • BTC 296 Topics in Biotechnology (3 cr.) F,S
    • BTC 401 Molecular Biology Techniques (3 cr.) F
    • BTC 425 Plant Biotechnology (3 cr.) S
    • BTC 426 Plant Tissue Culture Methods (3 cr.) F
    • ESF 300 Introduction to Geospatial Information Technologies (3 cr.) F,S
    • FOR 324 Natural Resources Information Systems (3 cr.) S
  • Ecology and Environmental Science
    • EFB 312 Introduction to Personal Environmental Interpretation Methods (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 415 Ecological Biogeochemistry (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 428 Mycorrhizal Ecology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 445 Plant Ecology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 505 Microbial Ecology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 516 Ecosystems (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 518 Systems Ecology (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 338 Meteorology (3 cr.) F
  • Biodiversity
    • EFB 326 Diversity of Plants (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 342 Fungal Ecology and Diversity (3 cr.) CLBS
    • EFB 352 Principles of Entomology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 355 Invertebrate Zoology (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 428 Mycorrhizal Ecology (3 cr) F even years
    • EFB 435 Flowering Plants: Diversity, Evolution, and Systematics (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 440 Mycology (A) (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 453 Parasitology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 566 Systematic Entomology (3 cr.) F
  • Mathematics and Physical Science
    • APM 105 Survey of Calculus and Application I (4 cr.) F,S
    • APM 106 Calculus and its Applications II (A) (4 cr.) F,S
    • APM 510 Statistical Analysis (3 cr.) F
    • FOR 323 Forest Biometrics (3 cr.) S
    • PHY 102 General Physics II (A) (4 cr.) S
  • Anatomy and Physiology
    • EFB 325 Cell Biology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 427 Plant Anatomy and Development (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 462 Animal Physiology: Environmental & Ecological (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 530 Plant Physiology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 531 Plant Physiology Lab (2 cr.) S
    • EFB 570 Insect Physiology (3 cr.) S

Total Minimum Credits For Degree: 126

Bachelor of Science in Wildlife Science

Wildlife science is the application of ecological knowledge in a manner that strikes a balance between the needs of wildlife populations and the needs of people. Research and teaching in wildlife science began at ESF in 1914, one of the first such programs in the U.S., and was quickly followed by establishment of the Roosevelt Wild Life Station in 1919. Today, our program is recognized nationally and internationally, and our graduates are employed worldwide. The focus is applied ecology, and students engage the environmental challenges associated with managing wildlife, ranging from endangered species to overabundant populations. The program recognizes and accommodates the fact that wildlife scientists increasingly must deal with all forms of wildlife, including plants and invertebrates, and the scope is becoming more international.

Required Courses

CourseCodes*Credits
APM 105Survey of Calculus and Its Applications I G4
APM 391Introduction to Probability and Statistics G3
EFB 101General Biology I: Organismal Biology and EcologyG3
EFB 102General Biology I LaboratoryG1
EFB 103General Biology II: Cell Biology and Genetics G3
EFB 104General Biology II Laboratory G1
EFB 120The Global Environment and the Evolution of Human Society G3
EFB 132Orientation Seminar: Environmental and Forest Biology 1
EFB 200
OR
FCH 210
Physics of Life

Elements of Organic Chemistry



3

4
EFB 202Ecological Monitoring and Biodiversity Assessment S3
EFB 210Diversity of Life I 3
EFB 211Diversity of Life II 3
EFB 307Principles of Genetics 3
EFB 308Principles of Genetics Laboratory 1
EFB 311Principles of Evolution 3
EFB 320 General Ecology 4
EFB 390Wildlife Ecology and Management 4
EFB 491Applied Wildlife Science 3
EFB 493Wildlife Habitats and Populations 4
EWP 190Writing and the Environment G3
EWP 290Research Writing and HumanitiesG3
FCH 150General Chemistry I G3
FCH 151General Chemistry Laboratory I G1
FCH 152General Chemistry II G3
FCH 153General Chemistry Laboratory II G1

Electives

Course Codes* Credits
General Education Course in two of the following categories: American History, The Arts, Western Civilization, Other World Civilizations G 6
Directed Electives 24
Open Electives 29
Directed Electives

To ensure that Wildlife Science undergraduates obtain both strength and breadth of knowledge, and position themselves for professional certification by The Wildlife Society, 24 elective credits must be obtained in the following subject areas (A-G), through specific courses that are designed for juniors or seniors (i.e. courses numbered 300 or higher)

  • Field experience (3 credits):
    This requirement can be satisfied during any year, and is normally done via coursework at Cranberry Lake Biological Station. ESF field courses offered during semester break, field courses offered by other institutions or organizations (e.g, School for Field Studies), independent research projects, or job-related internships during the summer session.
  • Vertebrate Diversity (6 credits):
    Choose at least two courses from the following:
    • EFB 482 Ornithology (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 483 Mammal Diversity (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 485 Herpetology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 486 Ichthyology (3 cr.) S
  • Plant Diversity and Ecology (3 credits)
    Choose at least one course from the following:
    • EFB 326 Diversity of Plants (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 327 Adirondack Flora (3 cr.) CLBS
    • EFB 336 Dendrology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 435 Flowering Plants: Diversity, Evolution and Systematics (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 445 Plant Ecology and Global Change (3 cr.) S
  • Invertebrate Diversity (3 credits)
    Choose at least one course from the following:
    • EFB 351 Forest Entomology (3 cr.) F, even years
    • EFB 352 Elements of Entomology (3 cr.) F, odd years
    • EFB 355 Invertebrate Zoology (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 453 Parasitology (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 554 Aquatic Entomology (3 cr.) F
  • Policy (3 credits)
    Choose at least one course from the following:
    • FOR360 Principles of Management (3 cr.) F
    • FOR465 Natural Resources Policy (3 cr.) F
    • FOR487 Environmental Law and Policy (3 cr.) F
    • FOR488 Natural Resources Agencies and Administration (3 cr.) S
    • FOR489 Natural Resources Policy and Law (3 cr.) S
  • Structure and function (3 credits)
    Choose at least one course from the following:
    • EFB 325 Cell Biology (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 385 Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 462 Animal Physiology: Environmental and Ecological (3 cr.) F
    • EFB 480 Principles of Animal Behavior (4 cr.) S
    • EFB 516 Ecosystems (3 cr.) S
    • EFB 542 Freshwater Wetland Ecosystems (3 cr.) S
  • Technical Skills (3 credits)
    Choose at least one course from the following:
    • BTC 401 Molecular Biology Techniques (3 cr.) F
    • ESF 300 Introduction to Geospatial Information Technologies (3 cr.) F, S
    • ERE 371 Surveying For Engineers (4 cr.) F

Total Minimum Credits For Degree: 126

Graduate Program

The graduate program in environmental and forest biology is organized in areas of study designed to provide a strong background within specific interest areas. Faculty with nationally and internationally recognized expertise define the scope of subject matter within each study area, recommend acceptance of students, and guide them through a course of study appropriate to student goals and aspirations. Most students develop a degree of depth and specialization in at least one large taxonomic group, such as plants, fungi, vertebrates, or insects.

M.S.

The master of science degree entails a research-based thesis (6-12 credits of thesis research) in addition to 18-24 credits of graduate coursework (including special research topics and at least three seminars) for a total of at least 30 graduate credits. Students earning a M.S. degree find a much wider range of job options that have greater responsibilities and pay compared to jobs that require only a B.S. degree. Many jobs at the M.S. level require an ability to perform research. Students interested in research-type positions in government, non-profit organizations, and academic and industry settings should pursue a M.S., rather than M.P.S. degree. Additionally, although not required by many graduate schools, a M.S. degree is often a key step toward earning a Ph.D. The M.S. student presents a thesis proposal to the major professor and committee who will guide completion of the research and writing of the thesis. A capstone seminar and defense of thesis are required.

M.P.S.

The master of professional studies degree requires graduate coursework credits and graduate seminars. Depending on the area of study, students may complete the M.P.S. degree with coursework and seminars, or a combination of coursework, seminars, and professional experience (internship). The M.P.S. degree is designed to accommodate a great breadth of student goals and needs, including students desiring additional education following some experience in their field, and science teachers seeking the master's degree for permanent certification. As in all degree programs in EFB, the student will be guided through the M.P.S. by a steering committee.

Coursework Option for the following areas of study: chemical ecology, conservation biology, ecology, entomology, environmental interpretation, environmental physiology, fish and wildlife biology and management, forest pathology and mycology, or plant science and biotechnology: At least 30 of the 42 credits required must be taken in residence at ESF. Coursework in this option includes three seminars (EFB 797), and a maximum of six credits earned in EFB 798 or 898. Neither a comprehensive examination nor a capstone seminar is required.

Coursework Option for the area of study in applied ecology: Coursework requirements include three credit hours each from five of the seven focus areas, two credit hours in graduate seminars (EFB 797) and additional 19 credit hours of graduate coursework for a total of 36 credit hours. Neither a comprehensive examination nor a capstone seminar is required.

Coursework Option for the area of study in plant biotechnology: Coursework requirements consist of 19 credit hours of core coursework (including two credit hours of graduate seminars (EFB 797)), nine credit hours of directed electives and eight credit hours of open electives for a total of 36 credit hours. Neither a comprehensive examination nor a capstone seminar is required.

Professional Experience Option for the following areas of study: chemical ecology, conservation biology, ecology, entomology, environmental interpretation, environmental physiology, fish and wildlife biology and management, forest pathology and mycology, or plant science and biotechnology: In addition to an internship earning 6-12 credits (EFB 898), this option requires at least 30 credits of graduate coursework, of which 24 must be taken in residence at ESF. At least 36 credits must be earned between internship and coursework. Coursework for this option includes at least two required seminars (EFB 797) and a maximum of three credits earned in EFB 798. A written report of the internship is required as well as an oral comprehensive exam and capstone seminar. For students completing the concurrent degree program (M.P.S./M.S.) leading to certification in biology (grades 7-12), 12 credits of student teaching and coursework will be accepted as equivalent to a professional experience.

Ph.D.

The doctor of philosophy degree may be pursued directly from the bachelor’s level, or following a master's degree program. Doctoral study culminates in a dissertation (or its equivalent as refereed publications) based on original research. In many cases this work serves as a foundation for future studies and publications throughout the student's career. Research activity is often funded through extramural grants to the student’s major professor. Abundant opportunities exist to gain teaching experience during the doctoral program. A written and oral examination is required to proceed to doctoral candidacy, at least one year prior to the capstone seminar and defense of the dissertation. Of the 60 credits required, 30-48 are awarded for coursework (including special research topics and at least five seminars) and 12-30 credits for the dissertation.

Graduate Areas of Study

Applied Ecology (M.P.S)

This area of study in the M.P.S. degree is designed for students who desire to solidify their background in applied ecology and professionals who would return for “retooling”; suitable for careers in environmental oversight, policy, planning, law, and education. This program begins with a three-day orientation in August at one or more of the ESF field facilities. Coursework requirements include three credit hours each from five of the seven focus areas: GIS tools, Statistical Tools, Specialty Tools, Ecosystem Ecology, Organismal Ecology, Human Dimensions in Ecology, and Communications in Ecology; two credit hours in graduate seminars (EFB 797) and additional 19 credit hours of graduate coursework for a total of 36 credit hours. A complete list of courses in each focus area is available from the graduate program director.

Conservation Biology (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

This area entails study and maintenance of biological diversity at the level of genes, populations, communities, ecosystems and biomes; intellectual underpinnings include evolutionary theory, systematic biology, population biology and ecosystem science. Conservation biology seeks ways to integrate biological principles with social, economic and political perspectives to achieve conservation goals.

Ecology (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

This integrative study area allows students to investigate the relationships of organisms to their environment and those factors that affect their distribution and abundance. Both the practical and theoretical applications of ecology are emphasized through courses and research. There are four major areas in ecology: organismal ecology, population-evolutionary ecology, community ecology and systems ecology. In consultation with the student’s steering committee, courses are chosen from these areas, as well as other disciplines. Specific research may encompass any of the four major areas of ecology and entail the study of the distribution and abundance of organisms, community structure including trophic relationships, diversity, succession and ecosystem properties, such as patterns of energy transfer and biogeochemical cycling.

Entomology (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

Graduate study opportunities prepare students in the basic aspects of insect life and the role of insects in relation to humans and their environment. The wide range of effects stemming from insect activity, from the beneficial to the deleterious, allows for a variety of research subjects in which insects play a major role. Thesis topics may concern insects that affect forests, shade trees and wood products, those relating to the health and well-being of humans, those playing key roles as parasites and predators of pest species, and those serving as food for many birds and vertebrate animals. Current research areas include population dynamics of forest defoliators, pheromone communications in beetles and moths, evolution of chemical communication, effects of forest practices on stream benthic insects, natural control of insects in forest systems and biochemistry of insect detoxification mechanisms.

Environmental Interpretation (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

Environmental interpretation sharpens the cutting edge of communication among scientists and various public sectors. Graduate study enables students to explore interpretation/conservation education processes through application to specific projects in the natural sciences and science education. Students pursue career pathways in natural resource agencies, in nature centers, museums, aquaria, botanical gardens and especially in the science classroom. The environmental interpretation program incorporates a 15,000-acre reserve in the heart of the Adirondack Park and an associated Adirondack Interpretative Center with trail system. Internships and partnerships with a variety of conservation-based programs are vital to the program. Students develop their course of study from a large palette of graduate courses in Environmental and Forest Biology.

Environmental Physiology (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

Environmental physiology provides students with advanced training in the nature and control of biological processes. Current interests include mechanisms of drought tolerance in plants; plant and microbial enzymology; virology; toxicity and disposition of insecticides and environmental toxicants in vertebrates; plant defenses against phytophagous invertebrates; thermal exchange in bird eggs; plant reproductive biology; and genetic improvement of willow and poplar.

Fish and Wildlife Biology and Management (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

Study in this area provides students with advanced preparation in biological concepts of fish and wildlife populations as they relate to resource management. Increasing concern for these wild animal resources has been matched by strong student interest in educational programs that prepare them for careers in the fish and wildlife professions; ESF graduates are employed worldwide.

Forest Pathology and Mycology (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

Forest pathology and mycology trains students to understand tree diseases and fungi from the perspective of basic biology and ecology as well as that of societal needs. This requires global understanding of the positive and negative ecological roles of diseases in the forest environment. It requires a broad knowledge of fungi, viruses, bacteria and abiotic environmental factors affecting forest systems. It also requires sophisticated application of molecular biology, physiology and genetics to host pathogen systems. Areas of interest include environmental, fungal and viral tree diseases; mycorrhizae; wood decay; monitoring and impact assessment of disease in forest and urban tree systems; epidemiology of tree diseases and the genetics of resistance to tree diseases and pathogen variability; molecular biology and physiology of fungus infection and invasion; and taxonomy and ecology of fungi.

Plant Biotechnology (M.P.S.)

This area of study in the M.P.S. degree is designed for students who need to broaden their knowledge base and technical skills in biotechnology, for professionals returning for “retooling,” and for the recent graduate in a variety of disciplines in biology and chemistry. Requirements consist of 19 credit hours of core coursework (including two credit hours of graduate seminars (EFB 797)), nine credit hours of directed electives and eight credit hours of open electives for a total of 36 credit hours.

Required Core Courses (19 credit hours):

EFB 530 Plant Physiology (3)
EFB 531 Plant Physiology Lab (2)
EFB 601 Molecular Biology Techniques (3)
EFB 625 Plant Biotechnology (3)
EFB 626/FOR 626 Plant Tissue Culture Methods (3)
EFB 627 Plant Developmental Biology (3)
EFB 797 Seminar in Environmental and Forest Biology (2)

A complete list of directed elective courses is available from the graduate program director.

Plant Science and Biotechnology (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

Plants, as the base for ecological food chains, serve as the structural and functional foundation of natural and managed systems. The study of plant science and biotechnology provides opportunity in a broad range of specialties fundamental to the understanding of plants and their interaction with other organisms and for specializing in plant biotechnology. Emphasis is on forests and related plant systems. Current research interests include dynamics of plant communities as affected by humans and the environment; mechanisms of plant succession; epidemiology of forest and urban tree diseases; taxonomy, physiology, growth and ultrastructure of fungi; heritability of wood properties and disease resistance of trees; biochemistry and physiology of plant stress response; photosynthesis; mycorrhizae; plant reproductive biology; genetic engineering; transformation; molecular evolution; phylogenetics; taxonomy; plant-pathogen interactions, tissue culture and study of ancient DNA.

Chemical Ecology (M.S., M.P.S., Ph.D.)

The area of study in chemical ecology is offered through collaboration between the Department of Environmental and Forest Biology and the Department of Chemistry. Interested students should apply to the department of major interest, which will have prime responsibility for setting requirements. Faculty from both areas contribute to the development of a plan of study enabling a student to acquire sophisticated skills in either chemistry or biology and an ample understanding of the other field to grapple with problems requiring an understanding of both.

As a relatively new interdisciplinary endeavor, workers in this field attempt to understand organismal interactions, both intra- and interspecific, mediated by chemical substances such as hormones, pheromones, kairomones and phytoalexins. These interactions occur at all taxonomic levels: between uni- and multicellular organisms, microbes and plants, plants and plants, plants and animals, microbes and animals and various species of animals. Study of such interactions has accelerated in recent years through joint efforts of biologists and chemists in basic and applied research in the laboratory and field.

General requirements for Chemistry M.S. and Ph.D. students in this program are found on the Department of Chemistry Requirements for M.S. and Ph.D. Degrees page.


* Special Course Codes (Code indicates course meets certain program or accreditation requirements. Ignore if there is no relevance to this program of study.) G = General Education Course (GenEd), E = Engineering, ES = Engineering Sciences, M = Mathematic, NS = Natural Sciences, PE = Professional Education, S = Summer-only


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State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry
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