Degree Requirements

To earn a degree in Ecosystem Science & Restoration (ESR) at the W.A. Franke College of Forestry and Conservation, students must: 1) complete UM's general degree requirements and 2) choose one of two degree options, aquatic or terrestrial, and complete required courses in that option.

The University of Montana requires a total of 120 credits to earn a degree. 39 credits must be upper-division (300-level or higher). In addition, the W.A. Franke College of Forestry and Conservation requires that students in their majors, including ESR majors, complete 36 traditional letter-graded semester credits, of which a minimum of 20 credits must be taken in an approved major within the college. The college also requires that students complete at least 400 hours of approved work experience prior to graduating.

Students who earn a degree in ESR have all the pre-requisites needed for attending graduate school in the ecological sciences and may qualify for the following federal civil service jobs: biological science technician (Series 0404), botanist (Series GS-0430), ecologist (Series GS-408), forester (Series G-460), hydrologist (Series GS-1315), range technician (GS-0455) and soil conservationist (Series GS-457). View more information on civil service requirements.

Aquatic Option

Want to work in aquatic systems? Student graduating under the aquatic option will be qualified to work in a number of fields in riverine, riparian and wetlands ecology and restoration. The strong emphasis on physical and biological sciences in this option will provide a student with the background required to work in jobs as hydrologists (if physics is taken), general biological scientists, or ecologists, and to attend graduate school in the biological sciences.

Degree requirements listed in the UM catalog       Download printable pdf of degree requirements


Terrestrial Option

Want to study terrestrial ecosystem science and contribute to the restoration of forests and grasslands? The strong emphasis on ecology and other biological sciences in this option will provide a student with the background required to work as general biological scientists, ecologists, foresters, range technicians, and ecologists. With careful selection of courses, a student can also meet requirements for jobs as botanist (with selection of appropriate electives), ecologist, forester, hydrologist (if physics is taken), range technician, and soil conservationist. The program also prepares students for graduate school in the biological sciences.

Degree requirements listed in the UM catalog       Download printable pdf of degree requirements