Department research, and therefore graduate education, is usually directed toward 1) wildlife-fisheries-agriculture interactions, 2) wetlands, 3) biostress research, or 4) survey and assessment of wildlife and fisheries resources. The majority of research activity in the Department is of an applied field nature that revolves around habitat, human users, and organisms (both game and non-game). The Department houses the S.D. Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, which is a cooperative effort among SDSU, the S.D. Department of Game, Fish and Parks, the U.S. Department of the Interior (U.S. Geological Survey), and the Wildlife Management Institute. In general, students are not accepted into the Department’s graduate program unless an assistantship can be provided. Therefore, a major advisor typically must have funding secured before a student is formally accepted into the graduate program. The major advisor is assigned at the time of acceptance into the program. The Department cooperates with a variety of internal and external funding entities to support research projects.
Philosophy Statement for Master of Science Degree in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences
To educate students for management-level positions with state and federal agencies, private companies, and for the pursuit of higher academic degrees. It is our goal to build on the foundation that students obtained during their undergraduate education, primarily directing them into a more specific area of wildlife or fisheries. By using specifically identified coursework areas and mentoring we will strive to assist students in developing their intellectual capabilities in working with natural resources and people. In addition, each student must propose and conduct an original scientific investigation. A MS degree involves a full-time commitment normally requiring two to three years to complete.
Philosophy Statement for the PhD Degree in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences
To educate students for upper-level management, research, and administrative positions with state and federal agencies, and private companies. It is also intended to prepare students in the teaching, research, and service component responsibilities needed for faculty positions with universities and colleges. By building on the educational foundation that these students obtained from bachelor’s and master’s degree work, we will endeavor to raise them to a higher intellectual plateau. While coursework is involved, this is primarily a research and mentoring educational experience.
This degree requires original thought and research contributions, synthesis, and development of information, and contributions to the world and its resources. Through mentoring and other educational experiences we desire to bring spirit, enthusiasm, imagination, and optimism to these students. They must develop independence, mature judgment, and a tolerance of differences among people, but an intolerance to inferior products and nonprofessional attitudes. We will strive to help these students become both operationally and conceptually creative. A PhD degree involves a full-time commitment normally requiring three to five years of effort beyond the MS degree.