Wildlife Ecology and Conservation department

Wildlife Ecology and Conservation department

Admissions Information for WEC Graduate Program

Thank you for your expression of interest in the graduate program of the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation. We have a very diverse and exciting graduate studies program. Degrees are offered at the Master of Science level, with thesis or non-thesis options, and at the Ph.D. level. Currently, WEC does not offer online-only graduate degrees.

 conducted through the Department is as diverse as the expertise of our . Affiliated faculty can be found in the Center for Latin American Studies, the Florida Museum of Natural History and the U.S. Geological Services Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, to name a few. Rigorously designed field research within Florida and around the globe (Latin America, Africa, Asia, New Zealand, etc.) is a special strength of our faculty. Our work is of the highest scientific caliber, incorporating the latest analytical, technical, conceptual, and philosophical approaches in order to solve real-world conservation problems in collaboration with agencies, resource managers, land owners, politicians and scientists spanning diverse disciplines.

Admission Requirements

All prospective applicants should read these guidelines for admission.

Students must have an earned Bachelor's degree. Under the current program structure, a Master's degree is generally required for admission into the Ph.D. program (exceptions occur, but they are rare). The Department has established English Language Skill/Verbal GRE and Quantitative GRE score requirements for applicants admitted in 2014 and beyond.

2014 Requirement: English Language Skill Requirements for Admission to WEC

All MSc & PhD applicants (US and International) to WEC must meet current UF Graduate School Verbal GRE score requirements. Currently these requirements are 320 Verbal on scores from tests taken before 8/1/2011 or 140 Verbal on scores from tests taken 8/1/2011 onward. In addition, non-US and Puerto Rican applicants must also meet current UF Graduate School TOEFL score requirements (80 on internet-based test or 550 on paper-based test). Exemptions to the TOEFL requirements can be found on the UF Graduate School website (https://admissions.ufl.edu/apply/graduate/).

While neither UF nor WEC sets minimum scores for the Analytical Writing score of the GRE general test, that score is weighted quite heavily by most faculty considering admitting a graduate student.

2014 Requirement: Quantitative Requirements for Admission to WEC

  • MSc & PhD applicants scoring below the 34th percentile or higher on the Quantitative test of the GRE are unlikely to be admitted to WEC.
  • Applicants with Quantitative GRE scores in the 50th percentile or higher do not require GPC sub-committee review. Provided they meet the minimum English Language Skill requirement (see above) for admission to WEC, their applications will be forwarded directly to the WEC Chair for final approval by the thesis advisor.
  • Applicants with Quantitative GRE scores in the 34th-49th percentile range will be referred to the GPC sub-committee for an admission vote. If the subcommittee votes to recommend admission, their application will be referred to the WEC Chair for final approval. Remedial coursework during the first year may be required.
  • Applicants with Quantitative GRE scores in the 33th percentile or lower will not be reviewed by the GPC sub-committee nor will they be considered for admission. The GPC recommends that these applicants retake the Quantitative GRE test and reapply for admission.

Assistantship stipends are usually awarded on a 1/3-time basis and currently pay $16,000 annually, but alternative assistantship structures and salaries are sometimes possible, depending on the source of funding. The nature of appointments vary, but many assistantships include coverage of tuition. The department has a limited number of teaching assistantships, generally assigned as part of the initial agreement with the student; some assistantships require teaching, and this will be clear in your letter of offer. A limited number of additional assistantships are available, generally to support one or two semesters of a student to enable them to complete their degree or to meet special teaching needs in the department.

A word from the wise about the stipend amounts...
Your professional life as a graduate student can be thought of as a pie in thirds; 1/3 time you work for UF (your advisor, as a TA, etc.), 1/3 time you excel in courses and coalesce non-research aspects of your degree program, and 1/3 time you are expected to conduct high caliber thesis research. You aren't getting paid very much as a graduate student because of the added values of the work. You are getting a degree, receiving varied training in the latest approaches, and developing interpersonal and professional skills through collaboration with your peers, teachers, and colleagues (some quantifiable, and others that are immeasurably important). And most of the money paid in stipend ultimately derives from the taxes of US citizens. As a public service that is given directly to you, high pay scales for graduate students would probably be inappropriate. Therefore, if you need a lot of money immediately, graduate school is not for you.


All prospective applicants should read these guidelines for admission.

Then if you desire, write our Student Services Office,
Attn: Ms. Claire Williams, Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, P.O. Box 110430, Rm. 102 Newins-Ziegler Hall, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611 (Phone: 352-846-0633).
To check the status of an active application go to https://one.uf.edu/.


Dr. Katie Sieving, Professor
WEC Graduate Coordinator