Program in Water Resources

Timothy Link, Director, Water Resources Graduate Program (College of Natural Resources 83844-1133; phone 208-885-9465; water@uidaho.edu

The interdisciplinary graduate program in Water Resources is administered by the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.

The Water Resources Program offers M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in water resources with the ability to complete a concurrent M.S./J.D. in 4 years and a Ph.D./J.D. in 6 years. The three program option areas are water resources engineering and science; water resources science and management; and water resources law, management, and policy. The program trains students to address complex water resources issues by building disciplinary depth in concert with multidisciplinary breadth to understand focused problems and communicate across disciplines.

The Water Resources Program enjoys university-wide participation and forms a coordinated effort that provides interdisciplinary study options in Water Resources. Participants are drawn from the Colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS); Art and Architecture (CAA); Education; Health and Human Sciences (CEHHS); Engineering (ENG); Law (LAW); Science (COS); Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences (CLASS); and Natural Resources (CNR). The program includes faculty from the Moscow campus and the Boise, Idaho Falls, Twin Falls, and Coeur d’Alene/Post Falls Centers. Water Resources faculty collaborate with the Idaho Water Resources Research Institute and faculty at Boise State University, Idaho State University, and Washington State University.

Graduate Degree Programs

Students in the Water Resources Program must meet the general requirements set forth by the College of Graduate Studies for the M.S. or Ph.D. degrees with the following exceptions: The Water Resources M.S. degree requires 24 credits of course work and completion of a thesis, equivalent to a minimum of 6 credits of Research and Thesis, for a total of 30 credits (note for transfers: an M.S. student must complete at least 18 of the total 30 required credits at the University of Idaho while matriculated in the College of Graduate Studies), and the Water Resources Ph.D. degree requires a minimum of 33 credits of coursework beyond the bachelor’s degree and completion of a dissertation for a total of 78 credits (note for transfers: A Ph.D. student must complete at least 39 of the 78 required credits at the University of Idaho while matriculated in the College of Graduate Studies). Students in the Water Resources concurrent J.D. track must meet the general requirements set forth by the College of Graduate Studies and Water Resources Program for the M.S. or Ph.D. degrees and the College of Law for the J.D. The following sections summarize specific requirements for the three option areas as well as for the joint M.S./J.D. and Ph.D./J.D.

Thesis/Dissertation Requirements

Each thesis/dissertation may reflect integration beyond a single discipline. Integration can be achieved throughout the thesis/dissertation or through a separate interdisciplinary chapter (possibly co-authored) that specifically integrates methods and/or information from at least two distinct disciplines to advance the argument(s) in the thesis/dissertation. All chapters shall be integrated into a coherent whole.

Committee Requirements

Each committee shall be composed of members from more than one discipline. For the M.S., a minimum of three members is required; for the Ph.D., a minimum of four members is required. All committee members must approve a) the student’s study plan, b) the interdisciplinary component(s) of the thesis/dissertation proposal (if applicable), and c) the interdisciplinary component(s) of the thesis/dissertation at the time of the final defense (if applicable).

Admission Requirements and Procedures

Admission to this program is highly competitive, and recruitment is international in scope. Even exceptional applicants are admitted only when there is an opening with one of the participating faculty. As required by the College of Graduate Studies, all applicants must provide official transcripts from all colleges and/or universities previously attended, a resume or curriculum vitae, a statement of academic and career goals and research interests that clearly identifies the research they would like to pursue at the University of Idaho, and three letters of reference that speak to the applicant’s aptitude for graduate research in water resources. For applicants for whom English is a second language, a TOEFL score of at least 600 (CBT 250) is required. Students can apply to the concurrent degree program only after application and admission to the UI College of Law and to the Water Resources Graduate Program.

To apply, please go to the University of Idaho Graduate Admissions webpage at or contact the Graduate Admissions Office, University of Idaho, P.O. Box 444266, Moscow, ID 83844-4266.