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New Mexico State University
Graduate Catalog
2012-2013

Water Science and Management

Coordinating Institute

Water Resources Research Institute, 575-646-4337

Sponsoring Departments

Agricultural Economics and Agricultural Business, 575-646-3169

Animal and Range Sciences, 575-646-2515

Civil and Geological Engineering, 575-646-3801

Geography, 575-646-3509

Plant and Environmental Sciences, 575-646-3405

Affiliated Faculty – Tilahun Adera, Ph.D. (Oregon State); A. Salim Bawazir, Ph.D. (NMSU); Max P. Bleiweiss, M.S. (California State-Los Angeles); Wiebke Boeing, Ph.D. (Louisiana State); Chris Brown, Ph.D. (San Diego State/California-Santa Barbara); Susan Brown, Ph.D. (NMSU); Colleen A. Caldwell, Ph.D. (Tennessee); David E. Cowley, Ph.D. (Wisconsin-Madison); Michael N. DeMers, Ph.D. (Kansas); Shuguang Deng, Ph.D. (Cincinnati); David W. DuBois, Ph.D. (Nevada-Reno); Daniel P. Dugas, Ph.D. (Oregon); Constance L. Falk, Ph.D. (Oklahoma State); A.G. Sam Fernald, Ph.D. (Colorado State); Jose Z. Garcia, Ph.D. (New Mexico); Abbas Ghassemi, Ph.D. (NMSU); Ryan M. Goss, Ph. D. (Nebraska-Lincoln); William R. Gould, Ph.D. (North Carolina State); Steven J. Guldan, Ph. D. (Minnesota); Adrian T. Hanson, Ph.D. (Iowa State); Jeffrey Herrick, Ph.D. (Ohio State); Brian H. Hurd, Ph.D. (California-Davis); Michael D. Johnson, Ph.D. (NMSU); Nirmala N. Khandan, Ph.D. (Drexel); J. Philip King, Ph.D. (Colorado State); Antonio S. Lara, Ph.D. (NMSU); Tim F. Lawton, Ph.D. (Arizona); Bernd Leinauer, Ph. D. (Hohenheim University, Germany); William Lindeman, Ph.D. (Minnesota); Greg H. Mack, Ph.D. (Indiana-Bloomington); J. Thomas McGuckin, Ph.D. (Wisconsin-Madison); John G. Mexal, Ph. D. (Colorado State); Martha C. Mitchell, Ph.D. (Minnesota); H. Curtis Monger, Ph.D. (NMSU); Mick O'Neill, Ph.D. (Arizona); Lambis Papelis, Ph.D. (Stanford); Jim T. Peach, Ph.D. (Texas-Austin); Geno A. Picchioni, Ph.D. (Texas A&M); Anthony V. Popp, Ph.D. (Northern Illinois); Richard C. Pratt, Ph.D. (Purdue); Albert Rango, Ph.D. (Colorado State); David A. Rockstraw, Ph.D. (Oklahoma); Rossanna Sallenave, Ph.D. (University of Guelph-Canada); Zohrab A. Samani, Ph.D. (Utah State); Jill Schroeder, Ph.D. (Georgia); Manoj K. Shukla, Ph.D. (University of Agricultural Sciences-Vienna, Austria); Rhonda K. Skaggs, Ph.D. (Utah State); Geoffrey B. Smith, Ph.D. (North Carolina State); Robert G. Smits, Ph.D. (Purdue); Rolston St. Hilaire, Ph.D. (Iowa State); Meghan Starbuck, Ph.D. (New Mexico); Caiti M. Steele, Ph.D. (King's College, University of London-UK); Kenny Stevens, M.S. (NMSU); Blair L. Stringam, Ph.D. (Utah State); April L. Ulery, Ph.D. (California-Riverside); Adrian Unc, Ph.D. (University of Guelph-Canada); Jacob Urquidi, Ph.D. (Texas Tech); Hugo Vilchis-Lincon, M.D., Ph.D. (UNAM, Utah State); Frank A. Ward, Ph.D. (Colorado State); Benjamin Widner, Ph.D. (Colorado State)

Degree: Master of Science
Major: Water Science and Management

Degree: Doctor of Philosophy
Major: Water Science and Management

The Water Science and Management Program

New Mexico faces serious challenges concerning the supply, development, quality, management, and administration of water resources; responses to the challenges will have major impacts on the regional economy, environmental quality, and the quality of life of the residents of New Mexico. A major need exists to train the next generation of water resource researchers, educators, and managers to address these challenges, both inside and outside New Mexico. To help meet these needs, an interdisciplinary program in Water Science & Management (WSM) has been developed at NMSU by the departments of Agricultural Economics and Agricultural Business, Animal and Range Science, Civil Engineering, Geography, and Plant and Environmental Sciences. The primary purposes of the interdisciplinary master's and doctoral degree programs in WSM are to provide graduate education for addressing state, national, and international water issues, and to train the next generation of water professionals needed to meet the challenges noted above. A Master of Science WSM degree can be earned with 26 credits of formal course work, plus additional thesis research credits, and a Doctor of Philosophy WSM can be earned with 30-40 credits of formal course work beyond the masters, plus additional dissertation research credits.

Five fields of study are offered in the program and are detailed below (specific classes for each area are detailed in the following section):

  • Agricultural Water Resources relates to the major use of ground and surface water in providing safe and secure food systems while ensuring ecosystem services. This field of study includes water allocation, water conservation, and water management issues facing urban water supply and irrigated agriculture.
  • Watershed, Riparian, and Aquatic Systems includes the processes of organizing and guiding land and other resources used in a river basin to provide desired goods and services without adversely affecting soil and water resources. Watershed, riparian, and aquatic system management involves an array of nonstructural (vegetation management) practices, as well as an array of structural (engineering) activities, when conditions warrant.
  • Water Quality and Treatment includes processes used to make water acceptable for desired end-uses. These can include use as drinking water, industrial processes, agricultural uses, and environmental management. The goal of water treatment processes is to remove existing contaminants in the water or reduce the concentration of such contaminants so the water becomes fit for its desired end-use.
  • Water Economics and Policy examines the demand for water by all its competing uses, including irrigated agriculture, energy, urban supply, and environmental restoration and management. Policies are examined for their influence on water supplies, water demands, and economic values of water reallocations among agricultural, environmental, energy, and urban users. It examines the role of water markets, water user decisions, institutional adjustments, and water-related policies with respect to resource costs, water quality, profitability, and environmental effects.
  • Water Informatics is an interdisciplinary science primarily concerned with the collection, classification, manipulation, storage, retrieval and especially the dissemination of water information, including both human and machine readable documents. Examples of human readable documents include maps, field data sheets, operational schedules, and long term asset management plans with narrative text. Machine readable documents include files for geographic information systems (GIS), Global Positioning Systems (GPS), relational database management systems, and emerging applications.

Admission Requirements for the Master of Science in water science and management include all general requirements for a graduate degree as set forth in the NMSU Catalog, plus the following:

  • Possession of a bachelor's degree from an accredited university grade point average of 3.5 or higher on a 4.0 scale. However, students with grade point averages between 3.0 and 3.5 will be given consideration, this degree being preparatory to the Water Science and Management degree.
  • Three letters of recommendation submitted directly from persons who know the applicant professionally, including a recommendation from the candidate's current employer/sponsor. These letters should provide evidence of professional ability, research experience, and the potential for professional development. A letter of intent or statement of purpose that addresses individual professional and personal goals related to water science and management and discusses how these goals fit within the degree programs at NMSU. It is expected that the candidate will have made contact with prospective advisor(s) at NMSU and speak to how he or she would work with said advisor(s) to advance their research and study.
  • A brief resume or curriculum vitae not to exceed five pages that summarize the candidate's background and qualifications.
  • Supplemental materials may include GRE scores, which may be required by certain departments.

Admission Requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in water science and management include all general requirements for a graduate degree as set forth in the NMSU Catalog, plus the following:

  • Possession of a master's degree from an accredited university with a grade point average of 3.5 or higher on a 4.0 scale. However, students with grade point averages between 3.0 and 3.5 will be given consideration. This degree being preparatory to the Water Science and Management doctorate.
  • Three letters of recommendation submitted directly from persons who know the applicant professionally, including a recommendation from the candidate's current employer/sponsor. These letters should provide evidence of professional ability, research experience, and the potential for professional development.
  • In addition, applicants to the Ph.D. program should provide evidence of research experience. This could include a master's thesis, a professional paper, peer reviewed manuscripts, consulting reports, or other evidence of experience conducting research.
  • A letter of intent or statement of purpose that addresses individual professional and personal goals related to water science and management and discusses how these goals fit within the degree programs at NMSU. It is expected that the candidate will have made contact with prospective advisor(s) at NMSU and speak to how he or she would work with said advisor(s) to advance their research and study.
  • A brief resume or curriculum vitae not to exceed five pages that summarize the candidate's background and qualifications.
  • Supplemental materials may include GRE scores, which may be required by certain departments

Curriculum for the Proposed Program

Core Courses – the following courses are core courses required for the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy programs, respectively.

Master's Degree – This degree is designed primarily for students who wish to complement their primary discipline by obtaining scientific, technical, and managerial expertise in water. The Master's degree can be earned with 26 credits of formal course work, plus six additional thesis research credits, as detailed below.

  • AG E 475 Water Resource Management and Policy (3 credits)
  • RGSC 518 Watershed Methods and Management, OR SOIL 456 Irrigation and Drainage (3 credits)
  • A ST 505 Statistical Inference I (4 credits)
  • Seminar (1 credit)
  • Electives from designated water list for the relevant field of study (10 credits)
  • Free electives in consultation with the student's committee (5 credits)
  • Thesis (6 credits)

Doctoral Degree – This degree is designed to give students a thorough and comprehensive knowledge of water science and hydrology and training in methods of research. The Ph.D. degree can be earned in about 30-40 credits of formal course work beyond the Masters Degree, plus additional dissertation research credits, for a minimum total of 75 credits beyond the B.S. degree, as detailed below.

  • AEEC 575 Advanced Water Resource Management and Policy (3 credits)
  • RGSC 518 Watershed Methods and Management, OR SOIL 456 Irrigation and Drainage (3 credits)
  • CE 557 Water Resources Development (3 credits)
  • TOX 523 Environmental Toxicology (3 credits)
  • GEOG 578, Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems (4 credits) OR GEOG 521 GIS Applications (3 credits)
  • A ST 505 Statistical Inference I OR C E 582 Statistical Hydrology (3-4 credits)
  • Seminar (Two different departments) (2 credits)
  • Electives from designated water list for the relevant field of study (10 credits)
  • Free electives in consultation with the student's committee (5 credits)
  • Dissertation (18 credits)

Water Science & Management Graduate Courses – The following courses are courses deemed likely to support each of the five fields of study, but this list is not meant to be all inclusive. Variations from or additions to this list may be made by the candidate, subject to the approval by the thesis or dissertation committee chairperson.

Agricultural Water Resources Credits

A EN 459 Design of Water Wells/Pumping Systems3
A EN 475 Soil and Water Conservation3
A EN 478 Irrigation and Drainage Engineering3
AGRO 620 Instrumentation in Agronomy3
C E 452 Geohydrology3
C E 482 Hydraulic Structures3
C E 483 Surface Water Hydrology3
C E 485 Design of Earth Dams3
C E 506 Advanced Soil Mechanics3
C E 525 Advanced Analysis of Engineering Systems3
C E 531 Open Channel Hydraulics3
C E 557 Water Resources Development3
C E 581 Ground Water Hydrology3
C E 582 Statistical Hydrology3
C E 681 Topics in Hydrodynamics I3
C E 682 Topics in Hydrodynamics II3
GEOG 467 Transportation Geography3
GEOG 552 Landscape Ecology3
GEOG 553 Applied Geomorphology3
GEOL 474 Groundwater Geology3
GEOL 515 Advanced Principles of Geochemical Equilibria3
GEOL 560 Geochemistry of Diagenetic and Hydrochemical Systems3
M E 530 Intermediate Fluid Mechanics3
M E 533 Computational and Theoretical Fluid Mechanics 3
M E 535 Turbulence and Chaos3
SOIL 456 Irrigation and Drainage3
SOIL 477 Environmental Soil Physics3
SOIL 477L Environmental Soil Physics Laboratory1
SOIL 479 Environmental Soil Chemistry 3
SOIL 651 Advanced Soil Chemistry3
SOIL 652 Advanced Soil Physics3

Watersheds, and Aquatic and Riparian Wetlands

AEEC 580 Natural Resources and Environmental Policy3
BIOL 517 Seminar in Physiological Ecology3
BIOL 533 Environmental Physiology of Plants3
C E 483 Surface Water Hydrology3
C E 557 Water Resources Development3
C E 581 Ground Water Hydrology3
C E 682 Topics Hydrodynamics II 3
FWCE 459 Aquatic Ecology4
FWCE 482 Ichthyology3
FWCE 532 Environmental Biology of Fishes4
FWCE 534 Aquatic Contaminants and Toxicology4
FWCE 578 Advanced Limnology3
GEOL 452 Geohydrology3
GEOG 577 GIS Capstone3
RGSC 518 Watershed Methods and Management3
SOIL 456 Irrigation and Drainage3
SOIL 472 Soil Morphology and Classification4
SOIL 477 Environmental Soil Physics3
SOIL 477L Environmental Soil Physics Laboratory1
SOIL 652 Advanced Soil Physics3

Water Quality & Treatment

BIOL 477 Applied and Environmental Microbiology4
CHEM 472 Analytical Methods for Toxic Organics and Metal Ions in the Environment3
ENVE 456 Environmental Engineering Design3
ENVE 462 Sampling and Analysis of Environmental Contaminants3
ENVE 551 Unit Process/Operation of Water Treatment3
ENVE 551L Unit Process/Operation of Water Treatment Laboratory1
ENVE 552 Unit Process/Operation of Wastewater Treatment Laboratory3
ENVE 552L Unit Process/Operation of Wastewater Treatment Laboratory1
ENVE 553 Chemical Theories of Environmental Engineering3
ENVE 554 Microbiological Theories of Environmental Engineering 3
ENVE 557 Surface Water Quality Modeling3
ENVE 558 Advanced Waste Management3
ENVE 630 Fate and Transport of Environmental Contaminants3
ENVE 631 Topics in Environmental Engineering I3
ENVE 632 Topics in Environmental Engineering II3
EPWS 520 Environmental Fate of Pesticides3
FWCE 534 Aquatic Contaminants and Toxicology4
MPH 554 Environmental Epidemiology3
TOX 523 Environmental Toxicology3

Water Economics and Policy

AXED 485 Agriscience and Technology Education Laboratory Applications2
AEEC 575 Advanced Water Resource Management and Policy3
AEEC 580 Natural Resources and Environmental Policy3
AG E 475 Water Resource Management and Policy3
ECON 455 Public Utilities Regulation3
HL S 452 Environmental Health3
ECDV 651 Economic Development Theory3
ECDV 661 Regional Economic Modeling I3
ECDV 662 Regional Economic Modeling II3
ECDV 664 Population Economics3
ECDV 668 Economic Development Finance3
ECDV 671 Sustainable Economic Development3
MPH 550 Environmental Public Health Issues3
MPH 565 International Health Issues3
MPH 567 Rural Health Issues3
MPH 569 U.S.-Mexico Border Health Issues3

Water Informatics

GEOG 521 Geographic Information Science Applications and Modeling3
GEOG 571 Cartography and Geographic Information Systems3
GEOG 572 Geodatabase Design3
GEOG 573 Introduction to Remote Sensing3
GEOG 577 GIS Capstone3
GEOG 578 Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems4
GEOG 581 GIS Design3
GEOG 582 Advanced Remote Sensing4
GEOG 585 Advanced Spatial Analysis3
GEOG 586 Geospatial Techniques for Natural Resources Assessment3

Course Descriptions:

Course descriptions can be found in the corresponding home department section of this catalog.