Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science


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Welcome to the Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science (TCBES) Graduate Program! The TCBES program is emerging as a center of excellence in the Pacific that is capitalizing on Hawaii’s unique natural resources that are integral to the state’s cultural, economic, and scientific enterprises, and by extension, to those of the entire nation and other Pacific nations. The TCBES Program provides Masters-level graduate education in the areas of conservation biology, environmental science, ecology, evolution, genetics and geospatial analyses. 

Program Description

The primary purpose of the Master of Science in Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science is to provide graduate training in conservation biology and environmental science to those with baccalaureate degrees and those currently working in the field. The program will utilize the extraordinary biological, physical, and cultural complexity of the island of HawaiĘ»i as a focus of investigation and study. The program will prepare students for technical positions and for entry into Ph.D. programs in related fields. 

Plan A requires course work (30 credits) and a thesis of original research. Plan B requires course work (36 credits), an internship, and research papers.

Core Courses (8) credits required for all M.S. TCBES students:

Elective Courses 1:

1 A maximum of 6 credits of 400-level courses may count toward these elective credits.

Other Courses:

Admission Requirements

  1. A baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited U.S. institution or from a nationally-recognized foreign institution.
  2. Communicate with a potential advisor(s) from the list of participating faculty with similar research interests. In the personal statement, list advisor(s) from the TCBES faculty who agrees to sponsor the application and to serve as primary advisor upon acceptance to the program.
  3. A minimum combined verbal and quantitative score of 1000 on the General Graduate Record Exam (GRE).
  4. Three letters of recommendation submitted by references who have observed or supervised the applicant’s performance and are able to comment on the quality of the applicant’s academic achievement, ability to pursue graduate study, and general character.
  5. Grade point average of 3.0 (on a scale where A = 4.0) or the equivalent in the last four semesters of approximately 60 semester credits of undergraduate work and/or in all post-baccalaureate work.

Note: In special circumstances acceptance may be granted at the discretion of the selection committee for those students who meet some, but not all, the above requirements.

Note: Recommended Baccalaureate Courses for Admission to the Program:

M.S. TCBES Application Check List

(Reminder: Priority application deadline is December 1)


Last updated: March 2017