PhD student cores a tree

The Rubenstein School offers a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Natural Resources. As a a multi-disciplinary academic unit, the School strives to integrate disparate disciplines to enhance knowledge and develop solutions to an array of environmental issues. Faculty expertise includes forestry, wildlife biology, recreation management, aquatic sciences, watershed management, environmental sciences, environmental philosophy, sociology, policy, planning, economics, and conflict resolution.

In addition, interdisciplinary fields such as conservation biology, ecological economics, and ecological design find their home in the Rubenstein School. Through strong relationships with a network of conservation organizations, the program establishes a solid curricular base to support academic leadership in conservation. Doctoral students can also earn a Certificate in Ecological Economics as part of their Ph.D. program. Students in the Doctoral Program move toward both academic and professional careers.

Doctoral Research and Scholarship

The Doctoral Program in Natural Resources provides an opportunity for both in-depth and interdisciplinary scholarship in the broad area of environment. Students work with faculty on national and international issues ranging from very focused studies on tree tissue responses to anthropogenic pollutants in the Northeast to ecosystem service valuation in the Amazon Basin.

Two specific emphases of the program come from the strongly held values of the faculty and are fairly unique among doctoral programs nationwide:

  • supervised teaching experience along with a course in higher education pedagogy
  • cross-cultural competency requirement

Admission Requirements

Applicants with a Master of Science degree are preferred.

Other admission requirements include:

  • acceptability to a potential faculty advisor holding an appointment in the Rubenstein School and the UVM Graduate College
  • Rubenstein School graduate faculty or applicant full-time assistantship funding

As of December 1, 2018, the Rubenstein School does not require a writing sample or GRE exam.

Learn More

For more information about the Rubenstein School PhD Program, contact the RSENR Graduate Program coordinator at or at 802-656-2511.