Hybrid Online MS Degree in Forestry


The Hybrid Online MS in Forestry is a professional degree tailored to learners with a Bachelor’s degree (BA or BS) in a non-forestry field who would like to pursue a career in forestry. With the majority of courses delivered online to guide field studies, intensive in-person field sessions to learn critical skills, and options for pace of coursework, the program provides maximum flexibility for those with existing personal and professional commitments, regardless of where the student resides. 

Forestry students at Michigan State University are part of a 119-year legacy that has shaped vibrant forest ecosystems all over the world. To ensure forests for our future, MSU Forestry provides the education for forestry professionals to optimize the balance between conserving forest ecosystems, the demand for sustainable forest bioproducts, and other forest ecosystem services, guided by leading faculty in a top 10 forestry program globally (QS Rankings, Agriculture & Forestry category).

The structure of the hybrid online MS program includes:

  • An intensive, field-based in-person short course to provide foundational skills (nine days)
  • A series of asynchronous, online courses, with guided exercises and projects for you to complete in a forest near you 
  • A final, intensive, in-person capstone project and examination (nine days) 

While working on your degree, you will learn how to sustainably manage forests while considering landowner and societal values and goals. The topics covered include tree biology/identification, forest measurements/sampling, forest carbon and climate change, silviculture, forest ecology, human dimensions of forestry, GIS (geographic information systems), forest economics and management. 

An M.S. in Forestry from MSU presents a wide variety of career paths.  Some of the more common job possibilities for students immediately after graduation are forester, silviculturist, forest restoration manager, forestry consultant, wildland firefighter/manager, carbon analyst, and forest certification specialist.

Please contact Jim Rivard to apply for this program, and to ensure it is a good fit for you and aligns with your career goals. 

The tuition rate for the Hybrid Online MS is the published in-state rate +5%. This rate does not include books and course fees, which will vary. 

Many MSU Forestry alumni go on to work at companies that manage millions of acres of forests, growing and managing trees and making wood products to better people’s lives and sustain the natural environment. Working in forest restoration as well as industry like Weyerhaeuser would be immediately available to youCurrent job openings in forestry.



12-Month Path

25-Month Path

Information Packet