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M.P.S. Program

The Master of Professional Studies in Agriculture and Life Sciences (M.P.S.) degree is for professional training and practical problem-solving, with less emphasis on scholarly research, and does not require the declaration of a research concentration.  However, the topics of interest to students pursuing professional degrees closely parallel the research concentrations of the faculty.  The project paper required of the M.P.S. typically reflects the special interests of the student.

Degree Requirements

  • Satisfactory completion of a minimum of 30 credit hours related to the candidate's professional interest, as agreed upon with the faculty advisor.
    (a)   Twenty credit hours must be taken within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, and at least 30 credits must be in graduate-level courses (5000-level and higher).
    (b)   A maximum of 6 of the required 30 credit hours may be earned through the student's problem-solving project (see third bullet).
    (c)   A maximum of 6 graduate-level credit hours earned outside the program, at Cornell University or elsewhere, may be counted toward these requirements at the discretion of the student's faculty advisor. These credits must be appropriate to the subject of study and completed not more than five years before admission.
  • Completion of a minimum of 2 semesters. One semester must be earned by carrying a minimum of 12 credit hours. In certain circumstances, the second semester credit may be earned by accumulating the remaining credit hours in the School of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions at Cornell University or through transfer of credit (see item c above).
  • Satisfactory completion of a problem-solving project under the supervision of the faculty advisor. This project may be an action program, the development of a plan to address a pertinent problem, the development of materials or methodology suited to the student's situation, or the development and execution of research appropriate to the profession. An oral presentation and formal project report must be submitted to and approved by the candidate's faculty advisor. 
  • A minimum grade point average of 2.5 (minimum of 18 credit hours with letter grades at Cornell).
  • Completion of the degree within four years of admission. Some fields of study may have special requirements, so students should check with the field's Director of Graduate Studies for specific details.

Problem-Solving Project

The degree candidate will prepare and submit a problem-solving project report under the supervision of their faculty advisor. The student and faculty advisor are responsible for the content and length of the paper. The Office of Professional Programs and Extended Learning sets the minimum format for project papers. Grammar, punctuation, spelling and other mechanical issues are the sole responsibility of the student. A maximum of six-credit hours are awarded for satisfactory completion of this project paper.

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