The Master of Science in Environmental Policy and Management provides academic coursework focused on one of the world’s most significant issues: the environment. In this online master’s program, you will explore the use of environmental management tools and strategies to resolve complex environmental problems and controversies, while studying environmental economics and resource availability. You will learn about competing ethical arguments that drive environmental law, regulation, policy and management decisions. Both qualitative and quantitative means of analysis of environmental data are addressed. 

This master’s degree helps prepare you for new careers or career advancement in government agencies, industries, and other organizations where employees with environmental knowledge are in demand. Six concentration choices and three end-of-program options (professional portfolio, capstone project, or thesis) allow you to tailor the program to your specific career path and provides for targeted professional development.

Degree Program Objectives

In addition to the institutional and degree level learning objectives, graduates of this program are expected to achieve these learning outcomes:

  • Research environmental management strategies that incorporate ecological, economic, and social considerations.

  • Analyze the ecological, economic, and social barriers to the implementation of sustainable environmental practices and programs.

  • Assess the direct and indirect costs of environmental regulation, problems, and corrective actions.

  • Examine environmental strategies and policies across spatial scales.

  • Evaluate the consequences of ecological destruction on public health, productivity, and social and economic welfare.

Degree at a Glance

Core Requirements18
Select one of the following concentrations:12
Elective Requirements3
Final Program Requirements3
Total Semester Hours36

Degree Program Requirements

Core Requirements (18 semester hours)

EVSP501Environmental Management 13
EVSP502Environmental Economics3
EVSP503Environmental Policy, Regulation, and Law3
EVSP508Environmental Ethics3
Select 1 course from the following:3
Environmental Toxicology
Applied Statistics
Select 1 course from the following:3
Capstone Proposal
Global Environmental Change
Total Semester Hours18
1

Required as the first course in this program.

Students must choose a concentration for this degree and may select from the General Concentration, Environmental Planning, Environmental Sustainability, Fish and Wildlife Management, Global Environmental Management, or National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) concentrations.

General Concentration Requirements (12 semester hours)

This general concentration allows you to select from all concentration courses offered within this program, enabling you to create your own focused area of study.

Select 4 courses from the following:12
Restoration Ecology
Conservation Biology
The National Environmental Policy Act (Prerequisite: EVSP503 - Environmental Policy, Regulation, and Law)
Watershed Management
Environmental Risk Assessment
Energy Policy and Sustainability
Total Semester Hours12

Concentration in Environmental Planning Requirements (12 semester hours)

Teaches how to design, implement, and evaluate sustainable developments, landscapes, and environments. Covers interactions between humans and their environment and government policies. Legislation, socio-political influences, and the analysis of development plans for adherence to professional standards and principles are covered.

Objectives

  • Detail the elements necessary to design, implement, and evaluate sustainable developments, landscapes, and environments.
  • Analyze the complex and dynamic interactions between humans and their environment.
  • Explain the role of government policy at municipal, regional, national, and global levels to achieve sustainable development.
  • Apply theoretical concepts to practical applications in order to design and implement sustainable environmental planning.
  • Apply principles of environmental policymaking and environmental legislation, as well as socio-political influences to the field of environmental planning.
  • Critically analyze complex, and often competing development plans for adherence to professional environmental planning and sustainability principles.
Select 4 courses from the following:12
Hazard Mitigation and Resilient Communities
The National Environmental Policy Act (Prerequisite: EVSP503 - Environmental Policy, Regulation, and Law)
Watershed Management
Elements of Sustainable Design
Landscape Ecology and Planning
Total Semester Hours12

Concentration in Environmental Sustainability Requirements (12 semester hours)

Looks at the complex and dynamic interactions between humans and their environment. Examines the role of government policies and the barriers preventing full sustainability implementation. Topics covered include how sustainability solves complex environmental problems and meets critical resource needs from a local to global scale.

Objectives

  • Detail the principles of sustainability and the roles of multiple disciplines in their effective implementation.
  • Analyze the complex and dynamic interactions between humans and their environment.
  • Assess the role of government policy at municipal, regional, national, and global levels in achieving sustainable development.
  • Analyze the political, regulatory, and economic barriers that prevent full implementation of sustainable products, goods and services.
  • Apply the principles of sustainability to complex environmental problems.
  • Analyze the role of sustainability in meeting critical resource needs, such as renewable energy and water quality and quantity, on the local, regional, national, and global scale.
EVSP509The National Environmental Policy Act (Prerequisite: EVSP503 - Environmental Policy, Regulation, and Law)3
EVSP561Elements of Sustainable Design3
EVSP605Energy Policy and Sustainability3
EVSP627Landscape Ecology and Planning3
Total Semester Hours12

Concentration in Fish and Wildlife Management (12 semester hours)

Examines fundamental concepts and principles of fish and wildlife management, and why human activity has an effect on populations. Teaches how legal regulations, policies, and politics influence management. The role of collaboration and partnerships in meeting critical resource needs on a national and global scale is also covered.

Objectives

  • Describe the fundamental concepts and principles of the management of fish and wildlife resources.
  • Assess the impact of human activities on the survival and management of fish and wildlife populations.
  • Analyze the regulations, policies, and politics that influence the management of fish and wildlife in the U.S.
  • Analyze the complex and dynamic interactions between fish and wildlife resources and their environment.
  • Assess the political, regulatory, and economic barriers that prevent the preservation and restoration of species and populations.
  • Analyze the role of collaboration and partnerships in meeting critical fish and wildlife resource needs, such as species restoration, threatened and endangered species management, and landscape level conservation, both on the national and global scale. 
EVSP504Fisheries Management3
EVSP505Wildlife Management3
Select 2 courses from the following:6
Restoration Ecology
Conservation Biology
Watershed Management
Fish and Wildlife Seminar
Total Semester Hours12

Concentration in Global Environmental Management Requirements (12 semester hours)

Studies global environmental and climate change, and examines the potential impacts on environmental policy and society, via scholarly research and real-world case studies. Emphasis is on the implications of environmental change for environmental managers, including management decision-making and strategies.

Select 4 courses from the following:12
Emergency and Disaster Planning and Management
Hazard Mitigation and Resilient Communities
Conservation Biology
Watershed Management
Strategic Planning
Total Semester Hours12

Concentration in National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) (12 semester hours)

Covers the theory and practice of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), with a focus on gaining hands-on experience preparing original NEPA compliance documents. Reviews examples of NEPA documents: Categorical Exclusions, Environmental Assessments, and Environmental Impact Statements. Looks at state vs. federal NEPA regulations, and reviews at least one federal agency’s NEPA procedures.

Objectives

  • Analyze the environmental compliance process as stated in the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (as amended) and Council on Environmental Quality Guidelines.
  • Evaluate significant NEPA case law and legal challenges/requirements.
  • Analyze environmental impact documents to identify strengths and weaknesses, legal soundness, and adequacy of environmental impacts of the proposed major federal action.
  • Apply appropriate EA/EIS analytical methodologies.
  • Evaluate approaches to mitigate conflict in public participation efforts (e.g., National Environmental Policy Act scoping and public comment processes). Prepare environmental impact assessment documents.

Concentration Requirements (12 semester hours)

EVSP509The National Environmental Policy Act (Prerequisite: EVSP503 - Environmental Policy, Regulation, and Law)3
EVSP629Environmental Impact Analysis (Prerequisite: EVSP509 - The National Envionmental Policy Act)3
EVSP639Intermediate Environmental Impact Analysis (Prerequisite: EVSP629 Environmental Impact Analysis)3
EVSP640Advanced Environmental Impact Analysis (Prerequisite: EVSP639 - Intermediate Environmental Impact Analysis)3
Total Semester Hours12

Elective Requirements (3 semester hours)

Select from other graduate courses not taken to meet core or concentration requirements.

Final Program Requirements (3 semester hours)

Select 1 course from the following:3
Capstone Portfolio 1
Capstone Project 1
Environmental Policy and Management Capstone 1
Total Semester Hours3
1

This course may not be taken until 30 credit hours have been successfully completed and student has a 3.0 GPA.