Graduation Requirements

There are two different masters degrees in the AEST department: Masters of Science (MS-AEST) and Masters (M-AEST).



In order to receive an MS-AEST degree, students must:

1. Satisfy all university requirements for the Master's Degrees as specified by UAA;

2. Advance to Candidacy prior to the beginning of the semester in which the student intends to graduate.  Advancement to Candidacy for the MS-AEST degree will require approval of a thesis research proposal by the graduate committee;

3. Complete 24 credits of course work approved in advance by the student's graduate committee, and six (6) credits of thesis work approved through the Advancement to Candidacy process.  Thesis credits are accumulated under the course number AEST A699.  Once a student has successfully advanced to candidacy for the MS-AEST degree, that student may not opt to complete their degree under the non-thesis option; and

4. Satisfactorily complete an oral comprehensive examination (thesis defense) during the final semester prior to graduation.  

All thesis research must meet the following requirements:

  • The work must contribute to the body of knowledge in the candidate's graduate field of study.  A literature search is required to demonstrate how the work is associated with the current state of the art in the candidate's graduate field of study.
  • The thesis, as judged by the graduate committee, must be of sufficient quality to justify publication in either a peer reviewed technical conference proceeding, or a peer reviewed journal.  Publication of a manuscript in a journal or conference paper is not a requirement for graduation, but submissions will be encouraged. 
  • The work must demonstrate command of knowledge and skills associated with the candidate's graduate program of study.
  • The work must require a level of effort consistent with six credit hours (Approximately 45 to 60 hours per credit hour, 270 hrs to 360 hrs total).
  • The thesis format must meet general UAA requirements for format as determined by the UAA Consortium Library.

The student must defend the thesis in an oral presentation to the student's graduate committee and invited guests.  The thesis defense serves as the student's required comprehensive examination.  The student may select an outside reviewer approved by the Dean or designee of the program to participate in the oral comprehensive examination to assure that the examination, defense, or scholarship evaluation is fair and appropriate.  The outside reviewer is a faculty member from another department in the university or other qualified individual in the area in which the student is seeking a degree. 

Students who fail to pass the comprehensive exam (thesis defense) will work with their graduate advisor to develop an action plan to correct any deficiencies noted in the comprehensive exam.  This action plan may require additional coursework, research and/or independent and directed study.  After completing the items identified in the corrective action plan, the student will again take the comprehensive exam.  Failure to pass a second time will result in dismissal from the program.

(2013/2014 catalog)


Applied Environmental Science and Technology

Important Information

Objectives & Outcomes
Admission Requirements
Course Requirements
Organizations & Resources

Graduation Requirements (M-AEST)
Graduation Requirements (MS-AEST)