University of Vermont



Working in the field, Field Naturalists connect ecology, botany, wildlife biology, soil science, geology, and environmental chemistry by learning to dissect, reassemble, and make sense of complex natural and human-influenced landscapes.

Reading landscapes and ferreting out what makes a place tick is not an end in itself, however: understanding the inner workings of a place serves no greater purpose if not infused into decision-making. That's where professional writing and public speaking come into the Field Naturalist training. FNs work one-on-one with award-winning writers and public speakers to bring their understanding into the public sphere, using language as a tool for change. Our graduates have authored more than 20 books and field guides; several have won national awards.

The Field Naturalist curriculum begins in June and goes something like this:

First Summer Semester (June start):
   Fundamentals of Field Science
   Field Botany for Natural Resource Professionals
   Field Practicum

First Fall Semester:
   Landscape Inventory and Assessment
   Professional Writing

Winter Semester (optional):
    Winter Ecology in Maine with Professor Bernd Heinrich OR
    Tropical Botany in Costa Rica with Professor Dave Barrington

First Spring Semester:
     Field Practicum Workshops
     Professional Writing

Second Summer Semester:
     Research Project (a consulting project for a sponsoring conservation organization)

Second Fall Semester:
     Wrap up research project; submit deliverables to sponsor

Graduation: Mid-December

Options at the University of Vermont are enormous. Here (in no particular order) are a few of them:

Field Zoology
Field Geology
Terrestrial Wildlife
Bryophytes and Bryophyte Ecology
Wildlife Diseases
Field Herpetology
Glacial Geology
Fisheries Biology and Techniques
Wildlife Behavior
Plant Pathology

Multi-Resource Silviculture
Sustainable Management of Forest Ecosystems
Ecological Landscape Design
Forest Ecosystem Dynamics
Fisheries Management
Professional Plant Propagation

Community Ecology
Landscape Ecology
Ecosystem Ecology
Restoration Ecology
Plant-Animal Interactions
Soil Ecology
Stream Ecology
Marine Ecology and Conservation
Advanced Agroecology
Global Biogeochemical Cycles
Geochemistry of Natural Waters

Methods For Field Ecologists
Biostatistics For Field Scientists
Spatial Analysis
Advanced Geospatial Techniques
Advanced GIS and Remote Sensing
Ecological Modeling
Conservation Biology and Modeling
Population Dynamics and Modeling
Introduction to R for Natural Resource Professionals

Environmental Problem Solving
Ecological Economics Methods
Ecological Leadership
Envisioning A Sustainable Future
Power, Privilege And Partnerships
Proposal Writing

Last modified November 20 2017 10:14 AM