Top Environmental Science Graduate Schools and Programs

Environmental scientists investigate interactions between people and the natural world. Get information about what makes an environmental science school stand out. See program information for three good schools, along with faculty honors, areas of specialization and school rankings. Schools offering Environmental Science degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Should I Look For in an Environmental Science Graduate School?

Are you concerned about air, soil, land planning, plants and animals, water quality or waste management? Do you want to teach? Top graduate schools can provide you with a good foundation in environmental science, laboratory facilities and field opportunities for your specialty. Since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that over 40% of environmental scientists work for government, you'll want a school with good internship programs and connections with agencies and other employers.

What Are the Three Top Environmental Science Schools?

Duke University in Durham, NC

Duke offers a unique doctoral program that combines environment and public policy through the Nicholas School of the Environment and the Sanford School of Public Policy. The program focuses on ecosystem science, environmental chemistry and toxicology, aquatic and atmospheric sciences and environmental social sciences, as well as natural resource policy and management. As a Nicholas student, you'll have access to 11 environmental research centers, a range of environmental analytical equipment and the Duke Forest to study ecosystems, plants and topography. Graduate degrees in environment include:

  • Master of Environmental Management (online program available)
  • Master of Environmental Management Concurrent Degree Program (available in a variety of degree combinations)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Environment, Earth & Ocean Science, or Marine Science and Conservation
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Policy

University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ

University of Arizona emphasizes water quality and sustainable land and water management, especially for arid lands. As a Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science graduate student, you could be one of approximately 55 candidates pursuing an advanced degree with the assistance of 24 full-time and 13 adjunct faculty members. Your resources include an environmental research laboratory housing a National Science Foundation Water Quality Center, a water quality testing lab and a center for environmental physics and mineralogy. Graduate degrees include:

  • Master of Science in Soil, Water and Environmental Science
  • Master of Science in Soil, Water and Environmental Science (Dual degree with MA in Journalism or MBA)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Soil, Water and Environmental Science

University of California in Berkeley, CA

The University of California in Berkeley was fourth in the 2015 Academic Ranking of World Universities list (www.arwu.org). It was ranked third on U.S. News & World Report's 2014 Environmental Science graduate school list. The faculty has received distinctions such as the Guggenheim, Fulbright and MacArthur fellowships. As a University of California - Berkeley student, you'll have access to ten research centers like the Berkeley Institute for the Environment and the Center for Sustainable Resource Development. Other research assets include forests, greenhouses, a natural history museum and a quarantine facility.

  • Master of Science in Range Management
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Science, Policy and Management

Ten Schools That Offer Graduate Environmental Science Degrees

College/UniversityInstitution TypeLocation
Stanford University4-year, PrivateStanford, CA
Pennsylvania State University4-year, PublicUniversity Park, PA
Montana State University4-year, PublicBozeman, MT
SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry4-year, PublicSyracuse, NY
Portland State University4-year, PublicPortland, OR
University of Virginia4-year, PublicCharlottesville, VA
University of North Texas4-year, PublicDenton, TX
Yale University4-year, PrivateNew Haven, CT
Miami University4-year, PublicOxford, OH
Florida A&M University4-year, PublicTallahassee, FL

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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