Master of Agriculture with Specialization in Conservation and Restoration of Land and Water

This Master of Agriculture (MAg) specialization is an advanced degree in environmental agriculture with a focus on the conservation and restoration of soils and water resources. The program is designed to be completed in 10-16 months of full-time study, but can also be taken on a part-time basis over a period of up to 6 years.

Applicants hold an undergraduate degree in agriculture, environmental sciences, ecology, or in an allied discipline. For a complete listing of degree requirements, see our Graduate Program Handbook. Depending on the undergraduate background, this program can contribute to the academic requirements to become a Registered Professional Agrologist

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Why Study Conservation and Restoration of Land and Water?

Broadly trained professionals are needed to optimize agricultural production while protecting the environmental quality of agroecological landscapes. Participants of this program learn a broad range of sustainable agricultural practices and techniques to avoid environmental impacts.

What will you learn?

This degree specialization offers a comprehensive course curriculum on foundations and practical techniques in environmental agriculture. Participants are trained in the evaluation and management of greenhouse gases from agricultural sources, minimizing environmental impacts from agricultural practices, and restoring soils and water in agroecosystems.

You select eight courses and a 6-credit capping research project under this degree program (or alternatively six courses and a 12-credit project). One of our faculty members working in Agriculture and the Environment or Restoration and Reclamation of Land and Water will serve as advisor for your research project and for a course selection that matches your career objectives. A comprehensive list of course offerings for this degree specialization includes:

  • Soil and Water Conservation
  • Soil Remediation
  • Advanced Land Reclamation
  • Environmentally Sustainable Agriculture
  • Advanced Plant Nutrition
  • Soil Biogeochemistry
  • Environmental Soil Chemistry
  • Advanced Soil Chemistry
  • Soil Physics
  • Advanced Soil Physics
  • Advanced Soil Formation, Classification and Landscape Processes
  • Perspectives on Traditional Knowledge
  • Public Participation and Conflict Resolution

Participants have the option of a 10-12 month curriculum, where course work is completed in two academic terms, followed by a research project in the spring and/or summer terms. Alternative scheduling options that qualify for full-time student status include 16-month or 20-month curricula with a lighter work load and the option of no activities during the summer break.

Program costs and funding opportunities

The Master of Agriculture with Specialization in Conservation and Restoration of Land and Water is a self-funded program with competitive tuition and fees. Participants pay instructional fees for Course-Based Programs with Standard Fees for 30 credits. 

Some academic advisors may offer partial graduate stipends for the duration of the capping research project. Alternatively, students can apply for paid internship and summer job opportunities during the summer break (May to August). Participants can also coordinate their capping research project with the funded Sustainability Scholars program (subject to competitive applications and partner approval).

How to apply?

To be considered for this program, follow the link below for a step-by-step guidance through the admission process. Note that you do not need to secure a supervisor or provide a research proposal to be considered for this degree program. Instead, upload a statement of interest.
In the on-line application system of the University of Alberta, find this program under the “Department of Renewable Resources”, “Master of Agriculture”. If the specialization is not yet selectable for this new program, note that you apply for the “Specialization in Conservation and Restoration of Land and Water” it in the first sentence of your statement of interest.

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