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Washington State University Factsheets

Master of Science in Entomology

Faculty working with Students: 17
Students: 25
Students receiving assistantships or scholarships: 100%
Priority deadline:
  • Fall January 10
  • Spring July 1
Campus:
  • Pullman: Yes
Tests required:
  • 300 GRE (Combined) Minimum score
  • 550 TOEFL Minimum score
  • 80 TOEFLI Minimum score
  • 150 GRE (Quantitative) Minimum score
  • 150 GRE (Verbal) Minimum score
  • 7 IELTS Minimum score

Degree Description:

The Department of Entomology offers graduate programs leading to Doctoral and Master of Science degrees. The curriculum provides the opportunity to study the basic and applied aspects of the science. Facilities and training are available for graduate study in major areas of entomology, including (but not limited to) apiculture; behavior; integrated biological control and sustainable pest management; ecology; forest entomology; insect/plant interactions; medical/veterinary entomology; population genetics; physiology; systematic; biological diversity and environmental toxicology. Departmental faculty, adjunct faculty, and affiliate faculty may all serve as student advisors. Faculty are housed both on campus and at research stations throughout the state; the ability to significantly interact with both on- and off-campus advisors and mentors offers students opportunities and perspectives not available in most programs. We maintain strong cooperative interactions with the USDA ARS lab in Yakima, Washington. Students whose major advisor resides at a Research & Extension Center (Wenatchee, Prosser, Puyallup, Mt. Vernon or USDA Wapato) typically come to Pullman for at least two semesters then relocate to the center where they will conduct their research and take the remainder of their coursework via AMS/WECN. Each student’s program of study is individualized based on their research interests, prior academic experience, and collaboration with their major advisor.

Admission Requirements:

The IELTS exam may be substituted for the TOEFL exam if their score is band 7 or higher.
Students should have completed an undergraduate major in one of the biological or physical sciences, forestry, agriculture, or a closely related field.

Student Learning Outcomes:

All graduates will be able to:

  1. To provide training that will enable students to become successful professionals in positions in industry, government and academia, the  program will provide a graduate experience that will:
    • Provide an educational experience that conveys to students an excellent understanding of the breadth of the field of  Entomology, and a superb level of specific expertise in their chosen defined area of this field.
    • Develop the expertise to use entomological knowledge to address emerging problems in agricultural science and  vector-based human and animal health issues.
    • Present research to local, regional, national and international audiences though publications and conference papers.  Participate in professional organizations through membership, attendance and presentations at meetings.
    • Improve their ability to teach and communicate though experiential teaching activities within the department and  community.
  2. To prepare students to conduct innovative research on entomologically-based issues of international importance, the program will  provide a graduate experience that:
    • Encourages students to conduct innovative research of a specific research topic while simultaneously cultivating their  ability to recognize and address knowledge gaps in their field through appropriate research.
    • Motivates the student to inculcate a solid understanding of prior research in their field and to demonstrate this  understanding through their research reviews, oral presentations and publications.
    • Assists the student to develop an ability to clearly communicate their research findings to professional and  stakeholder audiences and to have a robust understanding of the scientific method, statistical inference and  hypothesis testing.
  3. To enhance the visibility and impact of the graduate program in Entomology at WSU both nationally and internationally, the program  will:
    • Attract and retain high quality graduate students.
    • Provide effective mentoring and tracking of student progress to ensure a quality graduate experience and encourage  timely completion of graduate requirements.
    • Assist in placement of students in positions in industry, government and academia.
    • Seek to hire, mentor and retain nationally recognized research faculty that will actively support entomological  graduate student research.

Student Opportunities:

Students have access to excellent labs and greenhouse facilities on the Pullman campus and at Research and Extension centers located throughout Washington State. Students are encouraged to attend Entomological Society of America meetings, as well as other professional meetings, where they present their research, and learn from other scientists in their chosen field.

Career Opportunities:

New opportunities open daily for entomology graduates, including: federal government agencies (EPA, USDA, APHIS); state departments of agriculture and ecology; state agricultural research stations; university extension service; agrichemical company field representatives in research and sales; agricultural consulting firms; private agribusiness firms; timber and seed production companies; international development agencies; pest control operators; parkland and golf course pest management specialists; mosquito abatement districts; weed control districts; food processing industry; ornamental plant protection; public health service; industrial pest control consultant; the armed forces and homeland security.

Career Placements:

The Entomology Department has an excellent record of career placement for its graduates nationally and internationally. Our graduates have found careers in teaching, research and extension at colleges and universities; with federal and state agencies (e.g. USDA, FDA, and Washington State Department of Agriculture); in private industry; entrepreneurial endeavors; pesticide education programs; and forensics laboratories.

Faculty Members:

Beers, Elizabeth H, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Orchard pest management and secondary pests of apple.

Black, Carol, M.S.

Serves as: co-chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

National pesticide policies, pesticide drift, personal protective equipment, environmental safety, outreach education methods.

Crowder, David, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

The ecology of arthropod communities.

Daniels, Catherine, Ph.D.

Serves as: co-chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Collaborative collection and dissemination of information that addresses pesticide and pest management issues at the local, state, regional or national level.

Felsot, Allan Stan, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Hazard assessments of transgenic crops, pesticide drift and buffer zone design, reduction of insecticide application rates using new sprayer technologies, enhanced biodegradation of pesticides, remediation of pesticide waste in soil, best management practices for controlling agrochemical movement to surface and ground water, analytical chemistry of pesticide residues in soil, water, and food, pesticide toxicology, regulations, and risk communication. He teaches a graduate course entitled “Applied Environmental Toxicology.” He also team teaches the course, “Pesticides: Toxicology and Modes of Action.”

Gerdeman, Bev, Ph.D.

Serves as: co-chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

IPM – integrated pest management, organic/sustainable methods for managing agricultural pests, acarology, biological control, small fruit entomology, seed crop entomology, entomology of cut flowers and other specialty crops. Invasive pests – spotted wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii (Mats.) – oogenesis and phenology, high tunnel production systems, chemigation, insecticide synergists, and mass production methods for native predatory mites in developing countries and associated training materials suitable for use in rural extension.

Hopkins, Brandon, Ph.D.

Serves as: co-chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Apiculture. Developing improved methods for the cryopreserveation of honey bee semen. Investigating the evolution of different reproductive strategies.

James, David G, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Biological control and integrated pest management in irrigated horticultural cropping systems.

Jones, Vincent, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Population biology to improve IPM programs in deciduous fruits.

Lavine, Laura Sue, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

The development and evolution of adaptive phenotypic plasticity in insects.

Owen, Jeb, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Medical and veterinary entomology

Sheppard, Walter, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Population genetics and evolution of honey bees, insect introductions and mechanisms of genetic differentiation.

Snyder, William E, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Community Ecology, Biodiversity, and Sustainability

Stark, John D, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Protection of endangered species and ecological risk assessment of pollutants with particular emphasis on salmon and their food. Also, population-level risk assessments based on matrix models and differential equation models.

Walsh, Doug, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Developing the relationship among the host plants with constituent arthropod populations, environmental manipulation to promote better pest management.

Zack, Richard, Ph.D.

Serves as: chair, co-chair, or member on graduate committee

Research Interests

Insect systematics and entomological diversity as broad fields of exploration.

Zhu, Fang, Ph.D.

Serves as: co-chair on graduate committee

Research Interests

Functional genomics of insect adaptation to environmental stresses.

Contact Information:

Academic Coordinator
Johnson Hall Graduate Center
Pullman, WA 99164