Master of Arts/Science in Interdisciplinary Studies: Concentration in Sustainability

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Master of Arts/Science in Interdisciplinary Studies: Concentration in Sustainability

Interdisciplinary Studies: Concentration in Sustainability (MA/MS) 1


INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES: CONCENTRATION IN SUSTAINABILITY (MA/MS)

Master of Arts/Master of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies: Concentration in Sustainability (IS MA SUS/IS MS SUS) Unit: School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies (GI) Department: Sustainability Program Webpage: louisville.edu/upa/programs/master-of-interdisciplinary-studies-in-sustainability

Program Information

The large-scale goal of the Master of Interdisciplinary Studies in Sustainability Degree program (both MA and MS degrees) is to prepare students to address complex regional, state, national and global challenges posed by the intersection of human exponential growth and increasingly limited resources that support society.  Students seeking a career involving research or doctoral program should consider pursuing the Master of Science option. 

The exponentially rising demands that human populations make on natural resources and ecological systems that supply us with energy, food, water and many other ecosystem services will be further threatened by climate change and the pollution of air, soil, and water. Continued reliance on a “business as usual” approach to the economic production and consumption of goods and services, often characterized by the stresses it places on The Commons and by a disregard for environmental and social justice, now threatens the ability of the natural world to absorb our collective impact, erodes our collective security, and polarizes our societies. Substantial changes in social contracts, economic systems, as well as individual and institutional behaviors will be needed to provide more sustainable, healthy and secure societies. National, regional and local experimentation is needed to find solutions to societal challenges.

This Master of Interdisciplinary Studies in Sustainability program is an initiative of the University of Louisville’s Sustainability Council which seeks to integrate sustainability into everything that goes on at UofL. Students in the program are encouraged to contribute to the Sustainability Council’s efforts to explore sustainable solutions for UofL and our community. More information about the UofL Sustainability Council can be found on their website at louisville.edu/sustainability

Admission Requirements

Applicants must have a bachelor's degree (any major is acceptable), and provide a completed application form, a transcript of all undergraduate course work, scores for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), a statement of purpose, and three letters of recommendation. The GRE code for the University of Louisville is 1838.

Admission is competitive. The minimum requirements for unconditional admission are the baccalaureate degree or its equivalent from an accredited institution, an undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, and competitive scores on all sub-tests of the Graduate Record Exam.

Those applicants whose native language is not English and who do not hold a degree from a university where the language of instruction is English, must complete the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a score of at least 79 on the internet-based test or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), with a minimum score of 6.5.

Application Deadlines

The program maintains a rolling admissions policy. 

Application Materials

The following materials must be submitted to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies at graduate.louisville.edu/apply/:

  1. Application Form
  2. Application Fee
  3. Transcript(s): Transcripts of your college records from all of the schools you have attended must be submitted to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies, Graduate Admissions. Students must have earned an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university.*
  4. Graduate Record Exam (GRE): The program requires only the general sections of the GRE (Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical Writing). Scores should be directly reported to the university using the University of Louisville institution code of 1838. Those for whom English is not their native language must also submit TOEFL scores.*
  5. Two Recommendation Letters/Forms: Two letters of recommendation from academic sources are required and must be submitted online to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies, Graduate Admissions. 

The committee for reviewing student applications will consist of faculty currently serving on the Sustainability Council's Education Committee.

For answers to commonly asked questions by applicants, please review the Frequently Asked Questions (https://louisville.edu/graduate/futurestudents/admissions-faq-for-prospective-graduate-students) page of the Graduate School website.

 *There are additional requirements for international students. These requirements are listed at louisville.edu/graduate/futurestudents/international-applicants/international-students.

Program Requirements for the Master of Arts Degree

Code

Title

Hours

 

Required Course

3

 

PLAN 675

Introduction to Sustainability

 

Core Courses

 

Students are required to take one course in each Core Area (Built, Natural, and Social Environment):

 

Sustainability and the Built Environment

3

 

PLAN 670

or

Sustainable Development and Planning

 

UPA 679

Environmental Policy

 

Sustainability and the Natural Environment

3

 

SUST 602

Sustainability and the Natural Environment

 

Sustainability and the Social Environment

3

ANTH 522

or

Ecology, Politics and Culture

 

PLAN/UPA/PADM 673

Behavioral Dimensions of Sustainability

Additional Courses

UPA 606 Research Methods

 

3

Seminar

3

Capstone

3

Guided Electives within Core Areas (see below)

9

Minimum Total Hours

30

Program Requirements for the Master of Science Degree

Code

Title

Hours

 

Required Course

3

 

PLAN 675

Introduction to Sustainability

 

Core Courses

 

Students are required to take one course in each Core Area (Built, Natural, and Social Environment):

 

Sustainability and the Built Environment

3

 

PLAN 670

or

Sustainable Development and Planning

 

UPA 679

Environmental Policy

 

Sustainability and the Natural Environment

3

 

SUST 602

Sustainability and the Natural Environment

 

Sustainability and the Social Environment

3

ANTH 522

or

Ecology, Politics and Culture

 

PLAN/UPA/PADM 673

Behavioral Dimensions of Sustainability

Additional Courses

UPA 606 Research Methods

 

3

Research Methods or Statistics course in the student's selected Core Area

3

Seminar

3

Thesis

6

Guided Electives within Core Areas (see below)

6

Minimum Total Hours

33


Students will work with their academic committees to select the core and elective courses needed. It is strongly recommended that a student's committee distribute elective courses such that at least 3 or 4 credit hours are in an area other than that of the student's home department. Other courses may be acceptable with the program director's approval.

Built Environment

Code

Title

Hours

CEE 660

Transportation Planning and Urban Development

3

CEE 661

Environmental Analysis of Transportation Systems

3

CEE 681

Green Engineering & Sustainable Design

3

GEOG 536

Sustainable Transportation

3

LAW 902

Real Estate Transactions

2-3

PLAN 670

Sustainable Development and Planning

3

PLAN 607

Land Use Planning

3

PLAN 622

Urban Design

3

PLAN 623

Environmental Policy and Natural Hazards

3

PLAN 625

Historic Preservation and Sustainable Practice

3

PLAN 636

Site Planning

3

PLAN 650

Capstone Studio

3

UPA 648

Housing and Community Development

3

UPA 672

Public Management

3

UPA 679

Environmental Policy

3

UPA 680

Special Topics in Urban and Public Affairs

1-6

Natural Environment

Code

Title

Hours

ANTH 528

Animals and Humans

3

ANTH 531

Anthropology of Water

3

ANTH 535

Nutritional Anthropology

3

BIOL 567

Conservation Biology

3

BIOL 644

Global Change Ecology

4

BIOL 660

Advanced Ecology of Urban and Suburban Landscapes

4

BIOL 663

Advanced Population and Community Ecology

4

BIOL 667

Advanced Conservation Biology

4

GEOS 663

Climate and Environmental Change

3

LAW 903

Land and Ecosystem Conservation

2-3

Social Environment

Code

Title

Hours

ANTH 530

Human Impacts on Past Environments

3

ANTH 540

Health and Civilization

3

ANTH 626

Food Justice

3

ART 692

Art, Thinking & Social Change

3

GEOG 500

Globalization Seminar

3

HIST 610

Introduction to Historic Preservation

3

HIST 611

Studies in American History

3

HSS 675

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention at the Individual Level

3

HSS 676

Community Health Promotion and Disease Prevention

3

HSS 697

Special Topics in Health and Sport Sciences

1-3

LAW 931

Environmental Law

2-3

LAW 939

First Amendment Law

2

PHEH 620

Global Issues in Environmental and Occupational Health

3

PHEH 651

Advanced Environmental Health Services

3

PHPB 612

Health Communications Campaigns: Theory and Practice

3

PHPB 722

Health Risk Communication

3

PLAN 673

Behavioral Dimensions of Urban Sustainability

3

PLAN 674

Sustainable Urbanism

3

PLAN 676

Sustainable Social-Ecological Systems

3

POLS 639

Seminar in International Relations

3

SOC 610

Statistics II

3


APPLY HERE

After applying and submitting the application fee online, please be sure to send all application materials (transcripts, GRE scores, personal statement of interest, and three letters of recommendation) directly to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies University of Louisville, 105 Houchens Bldg.  Louisville, KY 40292 and/or gradadm@louisville.edu

The minimum requirements for unconditional admission is the baccalaureate degree or its equivalent from an accredited institution, an undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, and completion of the Graduate Record Exam.

The committee for reviewing student applications will consist of a subcommittee of faculty currently serving on the Sustainability Council's Education and Research Committee.

Financial Aid

The Department of Urban and Public Affairs administers a limited number of Graduate Research Assistantships (GRAs).  Apply for GRA here.

GRAs carry a monthly stipend and are granted tuition remission. In return students are required to carry at least nine hours of courses per semester and assist a faculty member (in their preferred core area and correlating department of concentration/ specialization) for 20 hours per week over a 10-month period. GRAs are required to carry at least 9 hours of courses per semester. Students interested in a GRA should consult the program director.

There are four different types of GRAs available to students within the Department of Urban and Public Affairs.  They all include full tuition remission, a monthly stipend, and health insurance and are all highly competitive.  The first is departmental funding awarded primarily based on merit, thus the higher the GRE score and GPA, the better the chances of the student receiving funding.  There are typically 1-2 available positions per academic year and thus are highly competitive and students can apply here at Graduate Research Assistantship/Fellowship Application.  The second type is offered via grant or contracts obtained by our various research centers within the department: State Data Center, Center for Hazards Research and Policy Development, etc.  These funds are awarded based on the student’s skills and experience with similar projects.  The third type of funding is awarded through departments outside of Urban and Public Affairs.  In the past, some students were able to secure funding through positions in the International Center, Cultural Center, Athletics, and Alumni Center and the REACH campus tutoring service.  These funds are awarded based upon the student’s skills and experience related to the position.  Contact information for these departments is available on the www.louisville.edu A-Z website.  The fourth type of funding is available to qualified Ethnic Minority Students through the graduate school and is awarded through a competitive nomination process.

The deadline for application for the departmental GRA application is March 1st.

Please fill out and submit the application below to be considered for the GRA.

Master of Arts/Science in Interdisciplinary Studies: Concentration in Sustainability Graduate Research Assistantship Application

For more information on general student financial aid (loans, grants, and work study) contact the UofL Financial Aid Office.

Contact Details

Tamara Sluss, Ph.D.
Director of MA/MS Interdisciplinary Studies Concentration in Sustainability
502-852-4040
tamara.sluss@louisville.edu

The Graduate School
Department of Urban and Public Affairs
University of Louisville
426 W. Bloom Street, Room 109
Louisville, Kentucky 40208

Phone: (502) 852-7906
Fax: (502) 852-4558
Email: upa@louisville.edu