Researchers record their observations in a mangrove swamp.

A formal plan of study, including courses to be taken to satisfy the following requirements, must be approved by the student's committee. Equivalent courses taken in another graduate program may satisfy course requirements, at the discretion of the student's dissertation committee. In the event that a student has not yet formed a committee, s/he can seek approval from the EEEB Program Executive Committee.

The faculty have developed very general guidelines that are used to help us quantify the quality of our program by evaluating students at two milestones in their graduate careers: the defense of their research proposal (usually written in the second year) and the defense of their dissertation (at end of their program). We use these rubrics to evaluate the success of our program (and the performance of students); the rubrics are available upon request by emailing Dr. Hank Stevens (

A. Graduate School Requirements

All EEEB graduate candidates must fulfill the Miami University general requirements for a Ph.D..

B. Formal Course Requirements

Students must earn at least 12 credit hours of formal coursework, including:

  1. Two core courses, from the following:
    • Evolutionary and Population Genetics (BIO 522)
    • Population and Community Ecology (BIO 671)
    • Ecosystem and Global Ecology (BIO 672)
  2. One course focused on the application of ecology or evolution to environmental problem solving, such as Conservation Biology (BIO 467), GIScience Techniques in Landscape Ecology (GEO 544), or other course approved by the EEEB Executive Committee.
  3. One additional graduate course, approved by the student's dissertation committee. See this partial list of EEEB-related courses typically offered by the participating departments.

C. Seminars

Students must take the two-semester introductory graduate seminar sequence in EEEB, consisting of BIO 601 (1cr., Fall) and BOT 710 (1 cr., Spring).

Each Fall, BIO 601 provides an introduction to a variety of skills needed to succeed in graduate school.

Each Spring, BOT 710 is offered to provide an introduction to the breadth of scientific disciplines in EEEB in a journal-club style forum.

Students must also take three more 1-credit graduate seminars.

D. Comprehensive Exams

Students must pass a comprehensive written and oral exam, given by the student's dissertation committee.

E. Dissertation

Students must complete a dissertation. The dissertation committee must include at least five faculty members; at least three must be EEEB Program Faculty Associates.

Additional Training

In addition to program requirements, EEEB students may complete a graduate minor or certificate program. In particular, students may be interested in: