student testing water

Curriculum

Two curricular options are available:

Most students apply for the 45-credit option. No thesis is required for either option, but all students must complete a 2-credit planning seminar and the associated 4-credit summer practicum. They also must enroll for the fall term following their practicum to complete the associated report.

The following curriculum is required of students who pursue the 45-credit option. Requirements under the alternate option depend on each student's education and experience. The core curriculum (categories A, B and C) reflects the diversity of knowledge and interdisciplinary experience needed in water resources planning and management. Courses in each category are selected in consultation with faculty advisors.

Representative subjects include:

Category A - Natural Science and Technology, 9 credits


Category B - Water Resources Institutions and Public Decisionmaking Processes, 9 credits


Category C - Analytical and Design Tools in Water Resources, 6 credits


A list of courses previously approved for credit in WRM is available on the web (PDF) or from the Academic Programs Office, 70 Science Hall.  Course offerings change continually.

Category D - Synthesis and Integration, 6 credits

All students must complete a 4-credit interdisciplinary water resources management summer practicum and the preceding (spring semester) 2-credit planning seminar, or an accepted substitute. The practicum, a culminating experience near the end of the student's program, is a student-faculty team project focused on a contemporary problem in water resources. Students who participate in the practicum during their second summer will need to be enrolled the following fall semester to assist in finishing the workshop report. Students who do the workshop in their first summer should be able to complete the program in four semesters.

Area Specialty, 15 credits

The area specialty is an intensive program of courses designed to provide each student with competence in a particular water-related area. Courses within the area specialty are taken concurrently with core program courses. With the approval of the appropriate department, area specialty courses may also be applied toward a second master's degree or law degree.

WRM students typically pursue specialties in disciplines such as:

Interdepartmental area specialties can be arranged for students interested in fields such as aquatic biology, land use management, public information, and water quality.

Students may also elect an area specialty in international water resources management. Unlike the training provided by traditional degree program fields such as agricultural economics or environmental engineering, this specialty focuses on the management of water resources.

Examples of area specialties and corresponding courses (PDF)