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A research-focused Ph.D. in forestry

The Ph.D. program in forestry is a research-intensive STEM degree that emphasizes critical thinking, independent study and original research in a chosen field of natural resource management. SFA offers the only Ph.D. degree in forestry in the state of Texas, and this program is renowned for the quality of students that graduate with this terminal degree.

The program will prepare you for careers in forestry research, academia and government agencies, non-government organizations, or nonprofit leadership capacities.

As a doctoral student in the Arthur Temple College of Agriculture and Forestry, you’ll work closely with your major professor. Your major professor will be your dissertation research director and will help you develop a customized degree plan that aligns with your research interests and career goals. He or she, along with your dissertation committee, will also help determine if you need to complete any background coursework.

Admission requirements

To be considered for clear admission to the forestry doctoral program, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Must hold or qualify for a master’s degree in a related field from an accredited university.
  • Must have a minimum GPA of 3.5 or higher.
  • Must have a combined GRE score of at least 300 (for students without an undergraduate or graduate degree in forestry, natural resources or a related field).
  • The GRE is required for international students who do not hold forestry degrees from qualified forestry or natural resources programs.

In some cases, applicants with a GPA between 2.8 and 3.5 or a GRE score that is below the acceptable range will be considered for probationary admission to the program.

Probationary admission may be granted to students who find a faculty member who agrees to serve as their major professor. Probationary students can gain clear admission by earning a GPA of 3.5 or higher on 12 hours of approved doctoral coursework.

Important: Applicants must have a faculty member in the Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture willing to serve as their major professor. We recommend contacting potential major professors before you begin the application process.

See the Graduate Bulletin for additional details, guidelines and requirements.

Have an undergraduate degree in something other than forestry?

An undergraduate degree in forestry is not required for admission to the program. However, if your undergraduate degree is not in forestry or a closely related field, you’ll need to complete several background forestry courses as part of your doctoral program.

Background coursework must include courses in each of the following areas:

  • Forest biology
  • Forest resource inventory
  • Social forestry
  • Forest ecosystem management
  • Forest resources administration



Forestry Building
Room 103

Mailing Address:
PO Box 6109, SFA Station
Nacogdoches, Texas 75962