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Fax: (414) 382-1705
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Freshwater Sciences

School/College:

School of Freshwater Sciences
600 E. Greenfield Ave.
Milwaukee, WI 53204

Degrees Conferred:

  • M.S. in Freshwater Sciences
    and Technology
  • Ph.D. in Freshwater Sciences

Contents

Overview

The School of Freshwater Sciences offers a graduate program of studies providing students with advanced training and education in four areas: Freshwater System Dynamics; Human and Ecosystem Health; Freshwater Technology; and Freshwater Economics, Policy and Management. Each of these focus areas is interrelated with the others, and includes biologic, physical, technologic and policy aspects of freshwater.

The Master of Science program has two tracks designed to provide a strong foundation necessary for the training of graduates that will utilize novel approaches to the sustainable and equitable use and management of freshwater systems worldwide. The Doctor of Philosophy program is a research degree designed to explore and discover novel approaches to the sustainable and equitable use and management of freshwater systems worldwide. These programs will create an interdisciplinary atmosphere for training the next generation of scientists armed with the knowledge, skills and experience to anticipate and address the freshwater issues of the future.

Timely application is encouraged for students seeking financial support. When applying for admission, applicants should describe as completely as possible their specific research interests within freshwater sciences. Applicants are strongly encouraged to establish contact, before or during the application process, with Freshwater Sciences faculty members whose research interests are closest to their own, regarding the likelihood of one serving as the student's major professor.

Graduate Faculty

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Professors
Garman, David, Ph.D., University of Sydney
Grundl, Timothy, Ph.D., Colorado School of Mines
Guo, Laodong, Ph.D., Texas A&M University
Janssen, John, Ph.D., Michigan State University
Klaper, Rebecca, Ph.D., University of Georgia
Klump, J. Val, Ph.D., University of North Carolina
McLellan, Sandra, Ph.D., University of Cincinnati
Roebber, Paul, Ph.D., McGill University
Associate Professors
Bootsma, Harvey, Ph.D., University of Manitoba
Carvan, Michael, Ph.D., Texas A&M University
Kaster, Jerry, Ph.D., University of Colorado
Kehl, Jenny, Ph.D., University of Colorado-Boulder
Assistant Professors
Berardo, Ramiro, Ph.D., Florida State University
Consi, Thomas, Ph.D., Columbia University
Grant, Laura, Ph.D., University of California-Santa Barbara
Lazkano, Itziar, Ph.D., University of Calgary, Canada
Sepulveda Villet, Osvaldo Jhonatan, Ph.D., University of Toledo
Smith, Matthew, Ph.D., University of Tasmania
Waples, James, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Affiliate Faculty
Distinguished Professor
Strickler, Rudi, Ph.D., Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (Biological Sciences)
Professor
Hutz, Reinhold, Ph.D., Michigan State University (Biological Sciences)
Associate Professors
Berges, John, Ph.D., University of British Columbia (Biological Sciences)
Udvadia, Ava J., Ph.D., Duke University (Biological Sciences)
Xu, Shangping, Ph.D., Princeton University (Geosciences)
Young, Erica, Ph.D., Monash University (Biological Sciences)
Assistant Professor
Chang, Woo-Jin, Ph.D., Inha University (Mechanical Engineering)
Han, Weon Shik, Ph.D., New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (Geosciences)
Scientists
Senior Scientists
Binkowski, Frederick, M.S., University of Wisconsin--Milwaukee
Cuhel, Russell, Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology & Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Associate Scientist
Aguilar-Diaz, Carmen, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Master of Science in Freshwater Sciences

Admission

An applicant must meet Graduate School requirements plus these departmental requirements to be considered for admission to the program:

  1. A bachelor’s degree in biology, chemistry, economics, geosciences, mathematics, physics, public policy, or other appropriate natural science, social science or engineering discipline.
  2. A minimum GPA of 3.0.
  3. Submission of scores on the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination (This requirement is optional for Professional Track applicants.).
  4. Three letters of recommendation from persons familiar with the applicant's scholarship and/or research potential.

The student must indicate in the Statement of Purpose (part of the formalized application process) the track to which they are applying and the intended focus of their M.S. studies. The statement must also indicate how their previous education has prepared them for graduate studies.

Critical skills required for the successful completion of the M.S. program include research design, data analysis, and effective communication of research results.

Thesis Track
Major Professor as Advisor

Students in the thesis track must be accepted by a faculty member who will serve as the initial major professor, and be primarily responsible for matriculation. Acceptance or agreement by a faculty member does not constitute formal acceptance into the School of Freshwater Sciences. Prospective thesis-track students are strongly encouraged to communicate with the prospective major professors early in the admission process.

A plan of study is required that identifies the planned courses and timeline for completion of the degree. For the thesis track, this includes coursework and proposed research and is planned by the student in consultation with the major professor and must be approved by the Thesis Advisory Committee.

Thesis Advisory Committee

The membership of the Thesis Advisory Committee should be established by the end of the student's first semester. The Committee must consist of three members including the M.S. student's advisor as chair (or co-advisors as co-chairs who are graduate faculty members from the School of Freshwater Sciences) and at least two additional members, one of whom must come from outside the student’s research focus. Consideration will be given to the inclusion of one external, non-UWM member of the committee. If included as part of the committee, this person would participate in the thesis defense examination. The Committee must meet at least once a year to monitor the student’s academic and research progress.

Credits and Courses

Minimum degree requirement is 30 graduate credits.

    Required core courses (9 credits)
    502 Aquatic Ecosystem Dynamics
    504 Freshwater Analysis
    One of the following:
    506 Environmental Health of Freshwater Ecosystems
    508 Freshwater Engineering
    510 Economics, Policy & Management of Water
    Elective courses (9-12 credits)
    To be selected in consultation with the student's major professor.
    Seminars and Practica (6 credits)
    Two 901 Seminar in Freshwater Sciences (1 credit each)
    Two 512 Freshwater Sciences Practicum (2 credits each)
    Thesis (up to 6 credits)
Proposal Defense and Preliminary Oral Examination

The student must complete a formal oral defense of her or his written thesis proposal. This defense should be made before the end the third semester and will also serve as the preliminary oral examination. The Thesis Committee decides by simple majority whether the student passes, fails, or must repeat the examination or defense. At the discretion of the Committee, a student who fails the defense or examination may be allowed one additional attempt at successful completion.

Thesis

The thesis is conducted with oversight from the student’s Advisory Committee. The thesis research is expected to be of a caliber sufficient for publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Satisfactory completion of the thesis, including successful defense, is required for graduation. Up to six credits may be awarded for thesis research.

Please see the Graduate School thesis and dissertation formatting requirements for further information.

Thesis defense

The thesis defense is a public presentation of the thesis research followed by an oral defense administered by the Advisory Committee.

Time Limit

All degree requirements must be completed within five years of initial enrollment.

Professional Track
Major Professor as Advisor

Upon admission to the program, each student in the professional track will be assigned an initial advisor based on their background. The initial advisor will provide counseling to the students and help to identify goals and objectives of their graduate education. Students should identify their permanent advisor during the first semester in the program. The advisor will oversee the student’s internship.

A plan of study is required and planned by the student in consultation with his or her advisor and the internship coordinators of the program. The plan of study identifies the planned courses and timeline for completion of the degree coursework and internship.

Credits and Courses

Minimum degree requirement is 36 graduate credits.

    Required science core courses (12 credits)
    502 Aquatic Ecosystem Dynamics
    504 Freshwater Analysis
    Pick two of the following three courses:
    506 Environmental Health of Freshwater Ecosystems
    508 Freshwater Engineering
    510 Economics, Policy & Management of Water
    Required professional core courses (choose 9 credits)
    BusMgmt 706 Managing in a Dynamic Environment
    BusMgmt 723 Managing and Negotiating Across Cultures
    BusMgmt 715 Leadership, Team Building, and Effective Management
    Philos 337 Environmental Ethics
    Other courses as approved by program director
    Elective courses (12 credits)
    To be selected in consultation with the student's major professor.
    Graduate internship (3 credits)
    980 Graduate Internship
Internship

All students in the professional science track are required to participate in a three- to six-month internship research experience (3 credits), generally in the summer between the first and second years of the program. Internship experiences will center on complex regional, national, and global water problems and support student learning relative to identified content, skill, and practice targets. Internship experiences will require learners to apply what they learn to authentic, practical problems in the field, both locally and, potentially, across the globe. The program coordinators will secure research internship opportunities with regional, national, and international partners in industry, government, and non-profit sectors. It will be the responsibility of the student and advisor to identify the direct supervisor within a specific organization and submit a proposed plan of study that identifies goals and objectives for their internship experience. Proposals will be reviewed by the program coordinators and approved based on how the internship experience meets program goals, the feasibility of the proposed plan, and the qualifications of the internship supervisor.

Time Limit

The student must complete all degree requirements within seven years of initial enrollment.

Doctor of Philosophy in Freshwater Sciences

Admission

An applicant must meet Graduate School requirements plus the following program requirements to be considered for admission:

  1. A degree in biology, chemistry, economics, geosciences, mathematics, physics, public policy or other appropriate natural science, social science or engineering discipline.
  2. Submission of scores on the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination.
  3. Three letters of recommendation from persons familiar with the applicant's scholarship, research achievements and potential.

A master's degree is not a prerequisite for admission to the Ph.D. program.

Students in the Ph.D. program must be accepted by a faculty member who will serve as the major professor, and be primarily responsible for matriculation. Acceptance or agreement by a faculty member does not constitute formal acceptance into the School of Freshwater Sciences. Applicants are strongly encouraged to communicate with prospective major professors early in the admission process.

Reapplication

A student in the M.S. program, or who receives the master's degree at UWM, must formally reapply for admission to the Graduate School before continuing studies toward the Ph.D.

Residence

The student must meet Graduate School residence requirements.

Major Professor as Advisor

The student must have a major professor to advise and supervise the student's studies as specified in Graduate School regulations. Appointment of a major professor will be based on compatibility between a student’s preferred research area or area of specialization and a professor’s area of specialization.

Course of Study

Students must earn 54 credits beyond the bachelor's degree, of which 24 credits may be taken from formal coursework completed as part of a master's degree. Students are required to take two integrative Seminar courses (FRSHWTR 901) and two Freshwater Sciences Practicum courses (FRSHWTR 512), as well as Quantitative Freshwater Analysis (FRSHWTR 504). In addition, students must complete at least 9 credits of dissertation research. Elective courses are selected in consultation with the student's Ph.D. committee. A minimum of 27 credits must be earned in residence at UWM. Students may take up to a maximum of 9 credits of independent study counting toward the degree.

Students must be proficient in at least three of the four areas of study: 1. freshwater systems, 2. human/ecosystem health, 3. freshwater technology, and 4. freshwater economics, policy and management. To meet this requirement, core courses are offered in each of these respective areas:

FRSHWTR 502 Aquatic Ecosystem Dynamics
FRSHWTR 506 Environmental Health of Freshwater Ecosystems
FRSHWTR 508 Freshwater Engineering
FRSHWTR 510 Economics, Policy and Management of Water

The student’s doctoral committee can recommend an exemption from taking the core course in any area that the student is deemed proficient. For more information on exemptions please contact the SFS graduate representative. Requests for exemption from Quantitative Freshwater Analysis-FRSHWTR 504 follow the same guidelines as the core course proficiency policy.

A Program of Study, including coursework and proposed research, is planned by the student in consultation with the major professor, and must be approved by the Committee. A student must present an annual progress report and an updated plan of study to his or her Doctoral Advisory Committee. For students entering with advanced degrees, some of the coursework may already be completed. Requests for counting previously taken courses toward the degree requirements will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. A minimal grade point average of 3.00 must be earned in coursework, not including research or seminars.

Ph.D. Advisory Committee

The membership of the Ph.D. Advisory Committee will be established by the end of the student's first year. The Committee must consist of five members including the doctoral student's advisor as chair (or co-advisors as co-chairs) and at least two graduate faculty members from the School of Freshwater Sciences. The other two members should represent at least one other department within UWM outside the School of Freshwater Sciences, with consideration given to the inclusion of an external, non-UWM member. The Committee must meet at least once a year to monitor and formally report to the faculty on the student’s academic and research progress.

Doctoral Preliminary Examination

The preliminary examination must be passed by the end of the second year for the student to continue in the program. Extensions of this deadline must be approved by the Ph.D. Advisory Committee. The examination is in two parts: written and oral. The content of the examination is determined in advance by the student's Advisory Committee, and will include subject matter that is broadly related to the area of research that the student will specialize in, as well as content related to the core courses. The Doctoral Committee decides by simple majority whether the student passes, fails, or must retake part or all of the examination. At the discretion of the Committee, a student who fails the examination may be allowed one additional attempt of all or part of the examination. After successful completion of the preliminary examination, the student concentrates on the development and execution of original research.

Dissertation Proposal Hearing

Following successful completion of the doctoral preliminary examination, the student submits a written dissertation proposal to the student's Ph.D. Advisory Committee. The proposal must be submitted within one semester of the successful completion of preliminary exams, and defended by the end of the following semester. Extensions of this deadline must be approved by the Ph.D. Advisory Committee.

Dissertator Status

Specific requirements which must be completed before the Graduate School places a doctoral student in dissertator status are described in the Doctor of Philosophy Degree requirements section.

Dissertation

During the final year of study, the candidate must present a public seminar on the dissertation research and subsequently prepare and successfully defend a dissertation reporting the results of the candidate’s research to the Committee. The original research findings embodied in this dissertation are expected to be accepted for publication in one or more refereed journals.

Please see the Graduate School thesis and dissertation formatting requirements for further information.

Dissertation Defense

As the final step toward the degree the candidate must defend the dissertation before the Ph.D. Advisory Committee.

Time Limit

All degree requirements must be completed within ten years from the date of initial enrollment in the doctoral program.

Courses

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Courses numbered 300-699 are Undergraduate/Graduate. Courses numbered 700 and above are Graduate only.

461 Politics and Policy of Sustainability. 3 cr. U/G.
Principles of environmental policy, governance, and management for global sustainability. CES 461, Global 461 & FrshWtr 461 are jointly offered; they count as repeats of one another. Prereq: jr st; CES 210(P) & Global 361(C), or cons instr.
464 Chemical Hydrogeology. 3 cr. U/G.
Natural chemical processes that occur in groundwater systems, how they are modified by human activity and contamination, and attempts to regulate them. Lec, lab. Frshwtr 464 & Geo Sci 464 are jointly offered; they count as repeats of one another. Prereq: jr st; Chem 102(P)
497 Study Abroad: (Subtitled). 1-12 cr. U/G.
Designed to enroll students in UWM sponsored program before course work level, content and credits are determined and/or in specially prepared program course work. Retakable w/chg in topic. Prereq: jr st; acceptance for Study Abroad Prog.
502 Aquatic Ecosystem Dynamics. 3 cr. U/G.
Interdisciplinary, quantitative approach to understanding large lake dynamic processes, including geological formation, hydrology, hydrodynamics, chemistry and the dynamics of plankton and fish communities. Prereq: jr st; 1 sem calculus or algebra; 2 sem Physics, Chem, or Bio Sci; or cons instr.
504 Quantitative Freshwater Analysis. 3 cr. U/G.
A fundamental set of tools for the quantitative analysis of environmental data sets, with an emphasis on the calculation of reservoirs, residence times and rates in aquatic systems. Prereq: jr st; 1 sem calculus, Physics, Chem, & Bio Sci; or cons instr.
506 Environmental Health of Freshwater Ecosystems. 3 cr. U/G.
The influences of human-induced environmental change on the health of freshwater ecosystems and humans who interact with these systems. Prereq: jr st.
508 Freshwater Engineering. 3 cr. U/G.
Engineering principles of freshwater resources, including hydrology, hydraulics, water chemistry, water and wastewater treatment technologies. Prereq: jr st.
510 Economics, Policy and Management of Water. 3 cr. U/G.
The impact of economics, policy and management decisions on our freshwater resources and how science and economics affect these decisions. Prereq: jr st.
511 Ichthyology. 3 cr. U/G.
The diverse biology of fishes focusing on behavioral, biomechanical, genetic, and physiological adaptions to diverse ecological systems. Bio Sci 511 & FrshWtr 511 are jointly offered; they count as repeats of one another. Prereq: jr st; grade of C or better in Bio Sci 310(P); or cons instr.
512 Freshwater Sciences Practicum: (Subtitled). 2-4 cr. U/G.
Diverse opportunities for practical, hands-on experience in the practice of freshwater science with emphasis on team work, problem solving, field work, and dissemination of results. Retakable w/chg in topic to 9 cr max. Prereq: jr st, Frshwtr 502(P) & 504(P); or cons instr.
522 Aquatic Organic Biogeochemistry. 3 cr. U/G.
Fluxes and biogeochemical cycling pathways of dissolved, colloidal and particulate organic matter across interfaces in aquatic systems. Prereq: jr st & 1 sem Chem; or cons instr.
524 (effective 09/02/2015) Aquatic Isotope Biogeochemistry. 3 cr. U/G.
Principles and applications of stable and radioactive isotopes and other biogeochemical tracers in aquatic environments. Prereq: jr st.
562 Principles of Aquaculture Systems. 3 cr. U/G.
Physical and chemical aspects of intensive & recirculating operations of aquaculture production systems. Prereq: jr st; BioSci 152 (P); Chem 104(P); Math 116(P).
563 Finfish Aquaculture and Nutrition Principles. 3 cr. U/G.
Principles of aquaculture and fish nutrition; emphasis on Great Lakes; future challenges to aquaculture development in North America. Prereq: jr st; Bio Sci 152(P); Chem 104(P).
564 Aquaculture Water Chemistry and Microbiology. 3 cr. U/G.
Principles of water chemistry & microbial conversion of nutrients; microorganisms that impact fish health; for successful operation of intensive aquaculture operations. Prereq: jr st; Bio Sci 152(P); Chem 104(P); Bio Sci 101(P) or 383(P).
565 (effective 01/26/2015) Fish Health. 3 cr. U/G.
Overview of current and emerging fish diseases and treatment strategies to diagnose and identify pathogens and disease to mitigate spread of disease. Prereq: jr st; Bio Sci 152(P); Chem 104(P).
610 Freshwater Inland Seas. 3 cr. U/G.
An oceanographic approach to the study of freshwater inland seas with regard to geology, hydrodynamics, climate, interactions with land, wetlands, streams, and biota interactions. Prereq: jr st; one upper-division natural science course.
611 Environmental Change and Freshwater Ecosystem Health. 3 cr. U/G.
An integrated, holistic approach to the impacts of global climate change on freshwater ecosystems from the population to the molecular levels. Prereq: jr st; one upper-division natural science course.
621 (Bio Sci 521) Benthic Ecology. 3 cr. U/G.
Chemophysical and biological interactions in freshwater and marine systems. Emphasis on invertebrate ecology. 2 hrs lec, 4 hrs lab. Req'd field work for which fee is assessed. Prereq: sr st & cons instr; or grad st.
650 Topics in Freshwater Sciences: (Subtitled). 1-3 cr. U/G.
Current issues in freshwater sciences. Retakable w/chg in topic to 9 cr max. Prereq: jr st.
782 Water Resources Planning. 3 cr. G.
Emphasis on planning for water across the water cycle (surface, groundwater, wetlands, etc.), integrating non-water resources (habitat, energy, GHG emissions, etc.) in an urban context. Jointly offered with & counts as repeat of UrbPlan 782. Prereq: grad st.
810 (effective 09/02/2015) Professional Development for Water Leaders. 3 cr. G.
Exploration of skill set needed for lifelong career development: research ethics, communications, teamwork, interpersonal relationships, administration, entrepreneurship, project management, and leadership. Counts as repeat of FrshWtr 650 with similar topic. Prereq grad st.
822 Molecular & Cellular Basis of Environmental Disease. 3 cr. G.
Examines how environmental agents cause changes in gene expression, structure, and activity leading to disease; and resulting alterations in normal cellular processes and physiological consequences. Frshwtr 822 & EOH 822 are jointly-offered; they count as repeats of one another. Prereq: grad st
888 Candidate for Degree. 0 cr. G.
Available for grad students who must meet minimum credit load requirement. Fee for 1 credit assessed. Prereq: grad st; cons instr.
900 Colloquium in Freshwater Sciences. 1 cr. G.
Lectures by staff and visitors on research in various areas of freshwater sciences. Prereq: grad st
901 Seminar in Freshwater Sciences: (Subtitled). 1-3 cr. G.
Seminar on topics of current interest in freshwater sciences. May be repeated w/ chg in topic to 9 cr max. Prereq: grad st.
980 Graduate Internship. 1-3 cr. G.
Students earn credits for serving in an internship that involves work related to freshwater sciences disciplines. They must prepare a report based on the internship. Retakable w/chg in topic to 6 cr max. Prereq: grad st; cons instr.
985 Master's Research and Thesis. 1-6 cr. G.
Research and writing of the master's thesis under the supervision of the major professor. Prereq: grad st; cons instr.
990 Doctoral Research and Dissertation. 1-9 cr. G.
Research and writing of the doctoral dissertation under the supervision of the major professor. Prereq: grad st; cons instr.
999 Independent Study. 1-3 cr. G.
For graduate students unable to secure needed content in regular courses. Retakable w/ chg in topic to 6 cr max. Prereq: grad st; cons instr.

Page last updated on: 12/18/2014