Are you interested in furthering your education on weed science and invasive plant management? Have you considered going back to school for a graduate degree, but are not sure how to fit it in around your work schedule? If so, a graduate certificate program may be a good fit for you! The University of Florida is offering an online graduate certificate in weed science to provide training on weed ecology and plant interactions, management techniques, and environmental considerations for plant management.
What is an Online Graduate Certificate?
A graduate certificate is a continuing education and professional development opportunity. Graduate certificates have fewer courses than a graduate degree program (such as a master’s degree), and there is no requirement to conduct research or defend a thesis. Graduate certificates are designed to focus on a specific topic or skillset, such as plant management. This graduate certificate in weed science, and many others, are offered 100% online – there is no requirement to travel to Gainesville for coursework or exams, making it ideal for students with full-time jobs.
The Weed Science Graduate Certificate
This graduate certificate is part of the University of Florida Agronomy department. It is a graduate-level program and is ideal for:
- Natural resource managers
- Industry personnel
- Government agency employees
- Agricultural managers
- Extension agents
- Students considering graduate school or a career change
As a weed science certificate student, you will learn about the biology, physiology, and ecology of nuisance plant species. You will also learn about the science behind management techniques and herbicide use, including how to control species in an environmentally responsible way. To complete the certificate, students must complete 9 credits (3 courses) with a minimum 3.0 GPA. There is one required course, Integrated Weed Management, and five electives that you can choose from for your remaining two courses (Figure 1). Students must also pass a final exam with a minimum score of 75%. The exam will include questions from each class you take during the program and may be taken multiple times if necessary.
One of the benefits of a certificate program is its flexibility. For example, there is no strict time limit for completing the program – you can complete your coursework over several years if needed. The courses you take during the certificate program can also count towards a graduate degree at UF if you decide to pursue a master’s degree or Ph.D. in the future.
Requirements for Admission
To be admitted into the weed science certificate program, students must have completed a Bachelor of Science degree and have taken one prior course in plant science (botany, agronomy, plant physiology, etc.). Students with a Bachelor of Arts degree may also be admitted if they have work experience in plant management or other related fields. There is no requirement for students to take the GRE! Applications can be submitted online through the UF system. State employees that are eligible for the State Employee Tuition Waiver Program can have their tuition and fees waived for up to 6 credits (two courses) per semester.
This blog post was written by Dr. Candice Prince, Assistant Professor with UF/IFAS. CAIP. Questions or comments can be sent to the UF/IFAS CAIP communications manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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UF/IFAS Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants. Turning Science Into Solutions.