Sustainable Agriculture


Our interdepartmental program builds on a solid foundation of agricultural science and provides students opportunities to cross traditional disciplinary boundaries. Our program was the first in the U.S. to offer both an MS and PhD in Sustainable Agriculture and is the only graduate program that allows students to pursue a true interdisciplinary curriculum that includes the biological, social, and economic elements of sustainability.

Doctoral Degrees Offered: Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Master Degrees Offered: Master of Science (M.S.)

Online Degrees: None

Learning Goals that students in this program are expected to meet include:

  1. An ability to frame problems and ask critical questions concerning agricultural sustainability
  2. Knowledge of biophysical as well as socioeconomic aspects of agricultural sustainability
  3. An expertise in sustainable agriculture that transcends disciplinary boundaries
  4. An appreciation of the intellectual history of efforts to improve agricultural sustainability
  5. An ability to work interdependently and collaboratively
  6. The capacity to address complex agricultural problems by using systems thinking and other approaches
  7. An ability to critique different problem-solving methods and approaches, and recognize and display visionary leadership with moral and ethical integrity

Doctoral Degree Outcomes

Master's Degree Outcomes

Career Placement Outcomes

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Contact: Lynette Edsall
Phone: 515.294.1191
E-mail Address:


ISU-wide: Academic Records, GPA, Statement of Purpose, Letters of Recommendation

Application Deadlines: January 15. PLEASE NOTE: Sustainable Agriculture is a direct-admit graduate program, where students are admitted into the group of a major professor as well as into the SUSAG major. As such it is imperative that prospective students identify a potential professor BEFORE applying to the program. Applicants should review our faculty directory to identify faculty working in areas that align with their interests and goals. Once relevant faculty members have been identified, applicants should contact those faculty directly to inquire about open graduate positions and funding opportunities for their planned term of entry. Only applicants that contact faculty, apply for the program and are then nominated by a faculty member will be considered for admission to the program.

Program Requires GRE: Yes

Program Requires GMAT : No

Additional International Requirements:

English Proficiency Minimum:

TOEFL Paper (PBT) 570
TOEFL Internet (iBT) 88
PTE 59
Duolingo 105

Program Will Review Without TOEFL or IELTS: No

Financial Statement: Application