Doctor of Philosophy in Animal & Rangeland Science


To be admitted to the Ph.D. Program, prospective students must obtain the agreement of a graduate faculty member to serve as a student's advisor. Robert Washington Allen, Bruna Alves, Felipe Barios Masias, Amilton de Mello, Bradley Ferguson, Mozart Fonseca, Andrew Nuss, Barry Perryman, Juan Solomon, Tamzen Stringham, Mike Teglas and Melinda Yerka.

Additional admission requirements include:

  • A bachelor's or master's degree from an accredited institution of higher education in an appropriate area of science,
  • An undergraduate/graduate grade point of 3.0 or higher, and
  • A combined verbal and quantitative GRE score in the upper 50 percent, a TOEFL score of 550 (paper version) or 79 (internet version) for international students. Students with a master's degree from a recognized institution can have the GRE requirement waived.
  • Students must meet a set of coursework requirements consistent with career objectives in either animal science or rangeland ecology and management. Required undergraduate classes must be taken prior to admittance or while in their graduate program.
    • Students emphasizing animal science must have completed a degree in (or similar to) animal science or veterinary science, or complete course work in physical sciences (6 credits), organic chemistry or biochemistry (6 credits), and biology, agriculture or natural resources (24 credits, including genetics, anatomy, physiology, soils, hydrology, ecology or plant or animal science).
    • Students emphasizing rangeland ecology and management must have completed the equivalent of a bachelor's degree in animal science, rangeland science or a closely related area. 
    • In selecting applicants, the Animal & Rangeland Sciences Graduate Selection Committee will consider the prospective student’s statement of purpose, undergraduate and graduate transcripts, GRE scores and three letters of recommendation.
  • Students who do not meet these criteria but who remain interested in the graduate program should contact their potential advisor(s).

Application Deadline:

Applications may be reviewed at any time. However, to receive full consideration for fall admission, all application materials should reach the department by Feb. 1. For spring admission, all application materials should reach the department by Nov. 1. Prospective students must apply online. In addition to transcripts and a report of GRE scores, prospective students need three letters of recommendation and a Statement of Purpose and Intent. The statement is a one- to two-page essay that describes the prospective student's reasons for undertaking graduate work and provides an explanation of the prospective student's study and research interests and their relation to previous studies and professional goals. All application materials must be submitted to the Graduate School. Prospective students may also submit copies of all materials, including informal transcripts, to the faculty member who is considering or has agreed to be their advisor.

Doctor of Philosophy Graduation Requirements:

  • Students for the Ph.D. in Animal & Rangeland Sciences must satisfy the general requirements of the Graduate School.
  • Students must select a Ph.D. graduate advising committee consisting of at least five members of the graduate faculty, including the advisor, at least one other member from the advisor's department, a member representing a closely allied discipline to the area of specialization and one member serving as the Graduate School representative.
  • Students must present a dissertation proposal within their first year. It will clarify how their research will create new knowledge in a variety of related sub-disciplines.
  • Courses should be selected to complement the student’s fields of interest and enhance his or her conceptual and research skills. A minimum of 72 graduate credits, with grades of “B” or better, beyond the baccalaureate are required. As many as 24 credits may be used from a completed master’s degree. A minimum of 24 credits of dissertation are required and 30 credits from the 700-799 level of coursework are required, with as many as 18 that may be used from a completed master’s degree. Only 9 credits of satisfactory/unsatisfactory grading are allowed.
  • Required Core Curriculum (The animal science or rangeland science requirement below can be waived if students enter the program with strength in that field):
    • AGSC REM 790 Animal & Rangeland Science Seminar (2 units). Students are also expected to attend the seminar whenever they are enrolled in on-campus classes.
    • Graduate level statistics class (3 units).
    • AGSC 610 Sheep Management, OR AGSC 618 Beef Cattle Management OR AGSC 606 Advanced Nutrition Management.
    • NRES 698 Restoration Ecology, OR AGSC 613 Rangeland Livestock Interactions, OR AGSC 608 Rangeland Ecosystems.
  • Students will take and pass a 1-credit (e.g. AGSC 795) comprehensive examination in order to be admitted into candidacy for the doctoral degree. The written and oral comprehensive examination will be administered by the student's advising committee.
  • Each candidate will write and defend in public his or her dissertation. The student's advising committee will pass judgment about the quality and sufficiency of the dissertation and its defense. The dissertation must also be accepted by the Graduate School.

Who do I contact for more information?

Robert Washington-Allen, Program Director
robert washington allen