Ecological Restoration (ECOR)
Ecological restoration is the process of repairing dysfunctional ecosystems to provide essential ecosystem goods and services important to society. The Ecological Restoration degree prepares students for a career that requires an understanding of the causes of land degradation and strategies for recovery of ecosystems damaged, degraded, or destroyed by natural or human causes.
The curriculum focuses on restoration of damaged ecosystems and landscapes, particularly terrestrial, wetland, and riparian systems in diverse settings that span the rural-urban spectrum. The discipline of ecological restoration requires a strong conceptual/theoretical foundation as well as a practical application component. This degree combines basic sciences, modern technologies, and contemporary ecological knowledge. Students will develop practical capabilities and gain critical understanding of the interaction of biophysical, socio-economic and political drivers that affect land degradation and restoration through a program that incorporates integrated coursework and an internship with ecological restoration practitioners.
Completion of this degree will prepare students to assess the causes of ecosystem degradation and to develop strategies for ecological restoration at multiple spatial scales. Graduates will be equipped for professional careers with environmental consulting companies, governmental and non-governmental land management organizations, and regulatory agencies. This degree program also provides a foundation for students planning to pursue advanced degrees in restoration ecology, disturbed land reclamation, natural resources conservation and management, or related fields. The total number of credit hours required for graduation is 120 hours.