VCU Bulletins

Accelerated Bachelor of Science (B.S.) and Master of Environmental Studies (M. Envs.)

Garman, Dr. Gregory C.
Director, B.S., Accelerated (dual-degree) and Master's (M.S. and M.Envs.) programs in Environmental Studies, and Director, Center for Environmental Studies
gcgarman@vcu.edu
(804) 828-7202

The accelerated B.S. and M.Envs. Program allows qualified students with a major in environmental studies to earn both degrees in five years by completing approved graduate courses during the senior years of their undergraduate program. The program will provide students with the opportunity to expand and deepen their knowledge of environmental studies while enhancing their professional credentials for the job market. Students in the program may count up to 12 hours of graduate courses toward both the B.S. and M.Envs. degrees. Thus, the student may earn the two degrees with a minimum of 141 hours. Currently, the M.Envs. Program requires students to earn 33 graduate credits.

The accelerated program is restricted to students who have demonstrated strong interest and success in environmental studies. The minimum qualification for admittance to the program is the completion of 90 undergraduate credit hours with an overall GPA of 3.0 and a GPA of 3.3 in the environmental studies major concentration. Students also are required to provide a letter of recommendation from at least one of their major professors attesting to their interest and competence in environmental studies.

Students failing to meet the minimum standards for admission to the accelerated program due to exceptional circumstances will be allowed to appeal to the environmental studies graduate admissions committee for special admission. However, under no circumstances will students who fail to meet the graduate student standards of performance outlined in the Graduate Bulletin be admitted to the accelerated program.

The environmental studies undergraduate and graduate studies program directors jointly will provide guidance for students who are accepted into the accelerated program. This guidance will include a review of all of the program degree requirements, both graduate and undergraduate, and the development of an appropriate plan of study.

The requirements for the B.S. in Environmental Studies and the Master of Environmental Studies are not reduced by the accelerated program. However, 12 hours of graduate course work may be applied toward both degrees for qualified students in the program. The table below outlines the undergraduate requirements that would be fulfilled by the corresponding graduate courses. Where special circumstances exist (e.g., student has already completed a fulfilled course prior to applying to the accelerated program), another undergraduate requirement may be fulfilled by the listed graduate course with the approval of both the graduate and undergraduate program directors.

Accelerated B.S.-M.Envs. allowable graduate courses and undergraduate credits

Shared graduate class Undergraduate requirement fulfilled
Credits
STAT 543 Statistical Methods I STAT 314 Applications of Statistics
3
ENVS 550 Ecological Risk Assessment or ENVS 670 Pollution Physiology ENVS 330 Environmental Pollution
3
ENVS 601 Survey in Environmental Studies SOCY/POLI 320 Research Methods in Social Sciences
3
ENVS elective ENVS elective
3

Approved graduate electives
ENVS/URSP 521 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
ENVS 591 Topics in Environmental Studies
ENVS 602 Environmental Technology
ENVS/PADM 628 Environmental Policy and Administration

Following the completion of the undergraduate requirements, the student may complete the master’s degree within one year. The recommended approach would be to complete the hands-on component of the degree (internship or independent study) during the summer following completion of the undergraduate requirements. All additional requirements could then be completed in two nine-hour semesters. However, students may also opt to postpone the hands-on component of the degree until the summer following the completion of all graduate course work.

 

 

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Virginia Commonwealth University
Richmond, Virginia
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Last update: 10/6/2009

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