Accelerated Master's in Plant Science

Landscape design

Research plant production and usage

The Master of Science in Plant Science program further focuses your education on the issues surrounding plant production, usage and economics with a dominant research component. The accelerated program allows you to begin working toward your graduate degree while completing the senior year of your undergraduate education. Therefore, you will be able to complete your master’s degree in as little as two semesters following your undergraduate graduation, although this may depend on the length of time you take to complete your thesis.

Admission requirements

To qualify for admission into the accelerated master’s program, you must meet these criteria:

  1. Hold junior or senior standing with at least 60 credit hours 
  2. Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.20 
  3. Complete a minimum of 25 credit hours of undergraduate hours relevant to plant biology (as determined by the undergraduate advisor, the student’s research mentor and the plant science program director) with a GPA of 3.50 or higher
  4. Conduct laboratory research relevant to plant science under the direction of a faculty member in agriculture, biology or chemistry at Missouri State University
  5. Receive acceptance by a member of the Master of Science in Plant Science graduate faculty
  6. Receive approval by the Master of Science in Plant Science graduate advisory committee

Mixed credit registration

Once admitted into the accelerated master’s program, you may take up to 12 credit hours in courses numbered 600 and above for both undergraduate and graduate credit. You must complete a mixed credit form prior to registering for courses that will satisfy both undergraduate and graduate requirements. Please note that mixed credit registration must be completed in person at the office of the registrar, Carrington 320.

Your dual credit courses must be in the area of economic botany, plant physiology, plant genetics, crop management systems, plant nutrition, soils, chemistry, ecology, fruit production, viticulture, enology, ornamental plants or landscaping.

Transitioning into full master’s program

You will be fully admitted into the plant science graduate program once you have fulfilled all the requirements for your bachelor’s degree. You must also meet all the requirements for admission into the Graduate College.

Research thesis

The completion of a thesis is a requirement for students in the plant science graduate program. During your first semester, you declare an area of specialization and begin to pursue a research project under the supervision of your graduate faculty advisory committee.

Based on faculty expertise and facility features, you will find many possible research areas to pursue:

  • Agronomy 
  • Crop management systems
  • Economic botany 
  • Enology and viticulture (study of grapes) 
  • Entomology
  • Fruit production
  • Horticulture/pomology
  • Ornamental plants and landscaping
  • Plant genetics and molecular biology
  • Plant physiology/ecology
  • Plant protection

Comprehensive exam

In addition to completing a thesis, all plant science graduate students must pass a comprehensive exam, which is taken during your second year in the program.