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University Bulletin
Graduate Degree Programs

Horticulture (HORT)

Program Home Page

ERIN CONNOLLY, Head of the Department of Plant Science
116 Agricultural Sciences & Industries Building
814-865-2025

JONATHAN LYNCH, Director of Graduate Studies in Horticulture
221 Tyson Building
814-863-2256

 

Degrees Conferred:

Ph.D., M.S.
Dual-Title M.S. in Horticulture and International Agriculture and Development
Dual-Title Ph.D. in Horticulture and International Agriculture and Development

 

The Graduate Faculty

 

The Horticulture program is administered in the Department of Plant Science, College of Agricultural Sciences. Each student will be associated with an adviser who may provide financial support, research facilities, and/or office space. Applicants are encouraged to explore, study, and research opportunities by contacting faculty who may be prospective advisers.

This program provides opportunities for candidates interested in Horticulture to become a professional leader and an independent scholar. Faculty in this program are competent to prepare candidates in the subfields of Horticulture including: crop production and marketing, integrated crop management, plant genetics and breeding, horticultural plant physiology, postharvest physiology, plant molecular biology and biotechnology, and horticultural ecology.

Admission Requirements

Requirements listed here are in addition to requirements stated in the GENERAL INFORMATION section of the Graduate Bulletin.  Applicants apply for admission to the program via the Graduate School application for admission.

Scores from the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE), or from a comparable substitute examination accepted by the Horticulture graduate program, are required for admission. At the discretion of the graduate program officer, a student may be admitted for graduate study in a program without these scores.

Prerequisites for admission vary according to the area of specialization, but basic courses in physical sciences, mathematics, biological sciences, communication skills, and social sciences and humanities are required. Students who lack prerequisite courses may be provisionally admitted but are required to make up deficiencies without degree credit.

Students with a 3.00 junior/senior average (on a 4.00 scale) and with appropriate course backgrounds will be considered for admission. The best-qualified applicants will be accepted up to the number of spaces that are available for new students.

Master's Degree Requirements

Requirements listed here are in addition to requirements stated in the DEGREE REQUIREMENTS section of the Graduate Bulletin.

A minimum of 30 credits at the 400, 500, 600, or 800 level is required, with least 18 credits at the 500 and 600 level, combined, including:

    • 12 credits of 400- or 500-level formal courses in the major field (at least 6 credits at the 500-level)
    • 3 credits in statistical methods at the 500-level
    • AGRO 501 (1 cr.)
    • HORT 590 (2 cr.)
    • AGRO 555 (2 cr.)
    • Minor/general studies courses 4XX or 5XX (6 cr.)
    • 6 credits of thesis research ( HORT 600 or 610)

All M.S. degree candidates must complete, at least 2 credits of Supervised Experience in College Teaching (HORT 602); however, these 2 credits cannot be counted towards the minimum credits required for the degree.  A thesis is required for the M.S. degree.   The thesis must be accepted by the advisers and/or committee members, the head of the graduate program, and the Graduate School, and the student must pass a thesis defense.

Doctoral Degree Requirements

Requirements listed here are in addition to requirements stated in the DEGREE REQUIREMENTS section of the Graduate Bulletin.

The communication requirement for the Ph.D. degree may be satisfied by completing at least 6 graduate credits in an area of communications skills approved by the student's advisory committee.

Students must complete 55-60 credits of formal course work beyond the baccalaureate, plus additional seminar, teaching, and research credits. A minimum of 12 credits of 500 level formal courses beyond the bachelor’s degree is required. Courses will be chosen by the student and dissertation adviser in consultation with the doctoral committee. Ph.D. students must complete:

o AGRO 501 (1 cr.)
o HORT 590 (3 credits are required, including 1 credit from the master’s)
o Statistics course (6 cr., at least 3 credits must be at the 500 level)
o HORT 600 (12 cr.)
o English communication skills and related studies: Either (1) one 3-credit 400- or 500- level course of advanced English technical composition; (2) one 3-credit 400- or 500- level course chosen from a list maintained by the graduate program office; or (3) one 3- credit 400- or 500-level writing intensive course.
o HORT 602 (2 cr.). These 2 credits cannot be counted towards the minimum credits required for the degree

The candidacy examination may be given after at least 18 credits have been earned in graduate courses beyond the baccalaureate, and must be taken within three semesters (excluding summer sessions) of entry into the doctoral program. Within one semester after passing the candidacy examination, the student's doctoral committee, with the dissertation adviser in charge, will have the program planning meeting. The purposes of this meeting are to (1) determine the student's strengths and weaknesses in pertinent subject matter areas; (2) guide the student in developing a plan of study; and (3) review and discuss the proposed dissertation research.

The comprehensive examination, composed of both written and oral parts, will be given when, in the student's and adviser's opinion, the student is ready for the examination, and when the English competence requirement and essentially all courses have been completed.

Ph.D. candidates are required to write and orally defend a dissertation on a topic that is approved in advance by their doctoral committee and reflects their original research and education in Horticulture. Upon completion of the doctoral dissertation, the candidate must pass a final oral examination (the dissertation defense) to earn the Ph.D. degree. The dissertation must be accepted by the doctoral committee, the head of the graduate program, and the Graduate School.

Dual-Title Graduate Program in International Agriculture and Development

Admissions Requirements

Students must apply and be admitted to the graduate program in Horticulture and The Graduate School before they can apply for admission to the dual-title degree program. After admission to their primary program, students must apply for admission to and meet the admissions requirements of the INTAD dual-title program. Refer to the Admission Requirements section of the INTAD Bulletin page. Doctoral students must be admitted into the dual-title degree program in INTAD prior to taking the candidacy examination in their primary graduate program.

Degree Requirements

To qualify for the dual-title degree, students must satisfy the degree requirements for the degree they are enrolled in Horticulture, listed above. In addition, students must complete the degree requirements for the dual-title in INTAD, listed on the INTAD Bulletin page.

The candidacy examination committee for the dual-title Ph.D. degree will be composed of Graduate Faculty from Horticulture and must include at least one Graduate Faculty member from the INTAD program. Faculty members who hold appointments in both programs’ Graduate Faculty may serve in a combined role. There will be a single candidacy examination, containing elements of both Horticulture and INTAD. Dual-title graduate degree students may require an additional semester to fulfill requirements for both areas of study and, therefore, the candidacy examination may be delayed one semester beyond the normal period allowable

In addition to the general Graduate Council requirements for doctoral committees, the doctoral committee of a Horticulture and INTAD dual-title Ph.D. student must include at least one member of the INTAD Graduate Faculty. Faculty members who hold appointments in both programs’ Graduate Faculty may serve in a combined role. If the chair of the doctoral committee is not also a member of the Graduate Faculty in INTAD, the member of the committee representing INTAD must be appointed as co-chair. The INTAD representative on the student’s doctoral committee will develop questions for and participate in the evaluation of the comprehensive examination.

Students in the dual-title program are required to write and orally defend a dissertation on a topic that is approved in advance by their doctoral committee and reflects their original research and education in Horticulture and INTAD. Upon completion of the doctoral dissertation, the candidate must pass a final oral examination (the dissertation defense) to earn the Ph.D. degree. The dissertation must be accepted by the doctoral committee, the head of the graduate program, and the Graduate School.

Student Aid

Fellowships, traineeships, graduate assistantships, and other forms of financial aid are described in the STUDENT AID section of the Graduate Bulletin. Students on graduate assistantships must adhere to the course load limits set forth in the Graduate Bulletin. Students who wish to compete for fellowships should be sure that their application materials are complete by January 15 for entry the following fall semester.

Courses

Graduate courses carry numbers from 500 to 699 and 800 to 899. Advanced undergraduate courses numbered between 400 and 499 may be used to meet some graduate degree requirements when taken by graduate students. Courses below the 400 level may not. A graduate student may register for or audit these courses in order to make up deficiencies or to fill in gaps in previous education but not to meet requirements for an advanced degree.

HORTICULTURE (HORT) course list

 

Last Revised by the Department: Spring 2018

Blue Sheet Item #: 46-05

Review Date: 2/20/2018

Faculty linked: 6/20/14

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