Environmental Sciences, Studies, and Policy (PhD)

The interdisciplinary PhD degree is offered by the Environmental Studies Program under the umbrella of the Joint-Campus Graduate Program in Environmental Sciences, Studies, and Policy, established by Oregon State University, Portland State University, and the University of Oregon.

The environmental sciences, studies, and policy program takes four or more years of study after earning the master’s degree.

Admissions Procedure

Admission to the PhD program must be granted by the Environmental Studies Program and approved by the focal department—another University of Oregon academic unit, chosen by the applicant, that offers a PhD degree. Applications are reviewed independently by the admissions committee in the Environmental Studies Program and in the focal department. Both committees must approve the application before the applicant can be accepted into the program. The online application must be completed and submitted by December 1 for the following fall admission.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate mastery of core environmental studies knowledge and knowledge of specific disciplinary fields as relevant to their specific focal area (e.g. English-ENVS students will have mastery of core English field).
  • Be proficient in interdisciplinary methods and approaches of environmental studies regarding research, analysis, and communication.
  • Demonstrate independent scientific thinking and advancement of knowledge within the interdisciplinary environmental studies field.
  • Demonstrate skills of professional engagement including oral and written communication (e.g. skills for conference presentations, journal publication, grant writing).
  • Understand career practices and professional standards and responsibilities in environmental studies, including ethical issues with regard to research and publication.

Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Environmental Sciences, Studies, and Policy Requirements

Focal department course work 1
Environmental studies course work 232
Focal department assessment of competence 3
Interdisciplinary assessment of competence 3

PhD students must satisfy breadth and concentration requirements established by the Environmental Studies Program and the focal department. Working with an advisory committee, each student customizes a plan of action for completion of the degree.

Requirements may vary depending on the chosen focal department. In addition to the course work, candidates are required to complete and defend a written dissertation and receive approval of the dissertation by a committee chosen in accordance with Division of Graduate Studies regulations. The committee must have at least five members. The chair and two additional members must be from the focal department. At least three members of the committee must be participants in the Environmental Studies Program.

Graduate Courses

Graduate students typically choose courses that contribute to their individual environmental focus from the Departments of Anthropology; Architecture; Biology; Chemistry and Biochemistry; Earth Sciences; Economics; English; Geography; History; Landscape Architecture; Philosophy; Physics; Planning, Public Policy and Management; Political Science; Psychology; and Sociology; from the International Studies Program; from the School of Law; and others. Consult the individual department listings in this catalog for course descriptions.