PhD in Forestry and Environmental Resources

FER’s outstanding research facilities, extensive outreach and industry activities and its faculty expertise in a wide array of related areas make NC State an ideal place to pursue a PhD in Forestry and Environmental Resources. A minor is required and can be declared within any established curriculum at NC State or structured as an interdisciplinary minor.

FER students pursuing PhD’s in Forestry and Environmental Resources have explored a variety of advanced problems involving forestry and natural resources, including highly-focused scientific inquiry into basic cellular issues up to broader inquiries into forestry or natural resource factors that affect specific plant or animal species, certain environments, entire ecosystems and the planet as a whole.

PhD degrees are available in a number of concentrations, ranging from all aspects of tree improvement or forest management and operations to forest economics, business and taxation; biometrics; bioremediation; biotechnology; forest nutrition; hardwoods; hydrology; international programs; international forestry; landscape ecology; policy; physiology/vegetative propagation; restoration ecology; silviculture; spatial information systems; tree improvement; wetlands/restoration ecology; urban forestry and more.

Recent doctoral dissertations include:

Minor Requirements

PhD candidates must declare a minor within any established curriculum at NCSU or as an interdisciplinary minor. The student’s advisory committee must then include a faculty member with an appointment in the curriculum stated as the minor. A minor generally consists of at least 12 graduate credits. The courses must be taken during your degree program and all must be within a given curriculum or among departments to make up a logical interdisciplinary minor. Course work taken for a minor in a stated curriculum or department must meet with the approval of the committee member representing that discipline. Some departments have specific core requirements for a minor that must be satisfied. In the case of an interdisciplinary minor, the minor representative on your advisory committee must have an appointment in the department of at least one of the courses included on the minor course list.

PhD in Forestry and Environmental Resources Student Procedures

All PhD in Forestry and Environmental Resources students must:

  1. Submit a Patent Agreement through the Plan of Work.
  2. Identify an advisory committee to be appointed by the Graduate Dean upon the recommendation of the DGP.
  3. Select a dissertation subject and submit an outline of proposed research to the advisory committee for review and approval.
  4. Prepare a Plan of Graduate Work with input from the advisory committee, to be approved by the DGP and submitted to the Graduate School for approval. This must be done as soon as is feasible after completion of 12 hours of course work.
  5. Take the following courses: FOR 801 (Seminar) and FOR 803 (Research Methods in Forestry and Environmental Resources).
  6. Pass written examinations in all major and minor fields (if required) no earlier than the end of the second year of graduate study and no later than one semester before the final oral examination. Results are reported to the Graduate School.
  7. Following satisfactory completion of all required written examinations, submit a Request for Approval to Schedule the Doctoral Oral Examination to the DGP at least two weeks prior to the suggested date. The student and examining committee will be notified once the Graduate School approves the request.
  8. Be admitted to candidacy after the DGP sends the report of the exam to the Graduate School and it has been passed without conditions, within six years of the start of the program.
  9. Submit a preliminary draft of their dissertation to the chair of the advisory committee for review.
  10. Give a dissertation to advisory committee members for review at least two weeks prior to the final oral examination.
  11. Submit a Request for Approval to Schedule the Doctoral Oral Examination, designating the final oral examination, to the DGP at least two weeks prior to its suggested date. This request should be submitted four or more months after admission to candidacy, and after the dissertation is complete (except for revisions triggered as a result of the final exam). Approval of this request must be granted by the Graduate School.
  12. Have the dissertation reviewed and approved by the thesis editor of the Graduate School to insure that the format conforms to the specifications prescribed in the Thesis and Dissertation Guide.
  13. Submit the dissertation in the format and time frame required by the Graduate School.
  14. Achieve a GPA of at least 3.0 to qualify for graduation.
  15. Complete all degree requirements within ten calendar years, beginning with the date the student commenced courses carrying graduate credit applicable to the degree program.