Twin Cities campus
 
Twin Cities Campus

Plant Pathology M.S.

Plant Pathology
College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Contact Information
Department of Plant Pathology, 495 Borlaug Hall, 1991 Buford Circle, Saint Paul, MN 55108 (612-625-8200)
  • Program Type: Master's
  • Requirements for this program are current for Fall 2022
  • Length of program in credits: 31
  • This program requires summer semesters for timely completion.
  • Degree: Master of Science
Along with the program-specific requirements listed below, please read the General Information section of this website for requirements that apply to all major fields.
Plant pathology focuses on the biology of plant-microbe interactions, and incorporates research involving biochemical, molecular, genetic, physiological, whole organism, population, and community levels of biological organization. Plant pathology interfaces with all plant science disciplines, and with food sciences, veterinary medicine, biobased products, and ecology. The MS program offers a molecular plant pathology track, in which students can design and use molecular approaches to investigate plant disease, increase basic knowledge, and develop new strategies for disease control. The following areas of concentration are also offered: plant disease management, biological control of plant disease, forest pathology and microbial degradation of wood, microbial ecology, population biology, plant-microbe interactions, disease resistance, host-parasite coevolution, plant microbe mutualisms, and virology. Students have opportunities for laboratory and field research locally as well as nationally and internationally.
Program Delivery
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Prerequisites for Admission
The preferred undergraduate GPA for admittance to the program is 3.50.
Applicants must have a sound college background in the basic biological and physical sciences and mathematics.
Other requirements to be completed before admission:
Applicants must have completed 35 semester credits in biology with at least one course in each of the following areas: botany, zoology, genetics, plant physiology, and microbiology. Applicants must also have completed at least one course each in inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry, and physics. If deficiencies exist in the prerequisites, students must correct them during the first year of the graduate program. These courses cannot be counted as part of the degree program.
Special Application Requirements:
TOEFL or IELTS scores are required for international students. A clearly written statement of career interests as well as three letters of recommendation are required of all students. Students may apply at any time; however, submission of all application materials by December 1 will ensure priority consideration for fellowships and research assistantships for the next academic year. Students can be admitted any semester.
International applicants must submit score(s) from one of the following tests:
  • TOEFL
    • Internet Based - Total Score: 79
    • Internet Based - Writing Score: 21
    • Internet Based - Reading Score: 19
  • IELTS
    • Total Score: 6.5
Key to test abbreviations (TOEFL, IELTS).
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
Program Requirements
Plan A: Plan A requires 15 major credits, 6 credits outside the major, and 10 thesis credits. The final exam is oral.
Plan B: Plan B requires 25 major credits and 6 credits outside the major. The final exam is oral. A capstone project is required.
Capstone Project:The capstone project usually involves a smaller research project than the Plan A thesis, extension/teaching related product, or a comprehensive literature review of plant pathology related subject. The project subject, scope, and the specific format of the expected final product must be agreed upon by the student's committee.
This program may be completed with a minor.
Use of 4xxx courses towards program requirements is not permitted.
A minimum GPA of 2.80 is required for students to remain in good standing.
At least 2 semesters must be completed before filing a Degree Program Form.
Total credits required is 31.5 credits. Plan A students must complete 15.5 credits of PLPA coursework. Plan B students must complete 25.5 credits of PLPA coursework. Students must enroll in a credit or non-credit teaching methods seminar or workshop, chosen in consultation with the advisor and director of graduate studies. Regular attendance at weekly plant pathology seminars is expected. Internships are encouraged as part of the graduate experience. Financial support for international or domestic internships is available on a competitive basis. Take PLPA 5480 (3 credits), if an introductory plant pathology course has not previously been taken.
Required Coursework (6.5 credits)
Take the following courses. Take PLPA 8005 for 2 credits to fulfill the one-semester teaching experience. Consult with the advisor and director of graduate studies regarding the additional teaching methods seminar/workshop requirement.
PLPA 5480 - Principles of Plant Pathology (3.0 cr)
PLPA 8123 - Research Ethics in Plant and Environmental Sciences (0.5 cr)
PLPA 8200 - Plant Pathology Seminar (1.0 cr)
PLPA 8005 - Supervised Classroom or Extension Teaching Experience (1.0-2.0 cr)
Non-Molecular Required Courses (4 credits)
Complete the following:
PLPA 8104 - Plant Virology (2.0 cr)
PLPA 8105 - Plant Bacteriology (3.0 cr)
Plant Pathology Electives (5 to 12 credits)
Plan A students select 5 credits, and Plan B students select 5 to 12 credits from the following. All courses must be chosen in consultation with the advisor, graduate advisory committee, and director of graduate studies.
PLPA 5003 - Diseases of Forest and Shade Trees (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5202 - Field Plant Pathology (2.0 cr)
PLPA 5203 - Introduction to Fungal Biology (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5300 - Current Topics in Molecular Plant Pathology (1.0 cr)
PLPA 5301 - Large Scale Omic Data in Plant Biology (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5303 - Data Visualization in Plant and Microbial Biology (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5444 - Ecology, Epidemiology, and Evolutionary Biology of Plant-Microbe Interactions (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5660 - Plant Disease Resistance and Applications (3.0 cr)
PLPA 8103 - Plant-Microbe Interactions (3.0 cr)
Outside Coursework (6 credits)
Select 6 credits, from the following or other coursework, in consultation with the advisor, director of graduate studies, and advisory committee.
AGRO 5121 - Applied Experimental Design (4.0 cr)
AGRO 5431 - Applied Plant Genomics and Bioinformatics (3.0 cr)
BIOL 5272 - Applied Biostatistics (4.0 cr)
SOIL 5611 - Soil Biology and Fertility (4.0 cr)
STAT 5021 - Statistical Analysis (4.0 cr)
Plan Options
Plan A
Thesis Credits
Take 10 master's thesis credits.
PLPA 8777 - Thesis Credits: Master's (1.0-18.0 cr)
-OR-
Plan B
Capstone Project (10 credits)
Take project credits, as needed to complete the 31.5-credit requirement for the degree, in consultation with the advisor and graduate advisory committee.
PLPA 8300 - Plant Pathology Project (1.0-6.0 cr)
Program Sub-plans
A sub-plan is not required for this program.
Students may not complete the program with more than one sub-plan.
Molecular Plant Pathology
This sub-plan is limited to students completing the program under Plan A.
Molecular Plant Pathology (21.5 credits)
Required Coursework (10.5 credits)
Take the following courses. Take PLPA 8005 for 2 credits to fulfill the one-semester teaching experience. Consult with the advisor and director of graduate studies regarding the additional teaching methods seminar/workshop requirement.
PLPA 5300 - Current Topics in Molecular Plant Pathology (1.0 cr)
PLPA 5480 - Principles of Plant Pathology (3.0 cr)
PLPA 8005 - Supervised Classroom or Extension Teaching Experience (1.0-2.0 cr)
PLPA 8103 - Plant-Microbe Interactions (3.0 cr)
PLPA 8123 - Research Ethics in Plant and Environmental Sciences (0.5 cr)
PLPA 8200 - Plant Pathology Seminar (1.0 cr)
Select courses from the following, or other electives as needed to complete minimum credit requirements. All courses must be chosen in consultation with the director of graduate studies, advisor, and graduate advisory committee.
PLPA 5003 - Diseases of Forest and Shade Trees (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5202 - Field Plant Pathology (2.0 cr)
PLPA 5203 - Introduction to Fungal Biology (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5301 - Large Scale Omic Data in Plant Biology (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5303 - Data Visualization in Plant and Microbial Biology (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5444 - Ecology, Epidemiology, and Evolutionary Biology of Plant-Microbe Interactions (3.0 cr)
PLPA 5660 - Plant Disease Resistance and Applications (3.0 cr)
PLPA 8104 - Plant Virology (2.0 cr)
PLPA 8105 - Plant Bacteriology (3.0 cr)
Outside Coursework Molecular PLPA (6 credits)
Select at least 6 course credits outside the major in consultation with advisor, director of graduate studies, and advisory committee.
AGRO 5121 - Applied Experimental Design (4.0 cr)
AGRO 5431 - Applied Plant Genomics and Bioinformatics (3.0 cr)
BIOL 5272 - Applied Biostatistics (4.0 cr)
SOIL 5611 - Soil Biology and Fertility (4.0 cr)
STAT 5021 - Statistical Analysis (4.0 cr)
 
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PLPA 5480 - Principles of Plant Pathology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course is intended for graduate students and undergraduate students in their third or fourth year that are interested in learning about principles of plant pathology, diseases that affect plants, microbiology and microbial and plant interactions. In this course students will learn principles of plant pathology through lectures and demonstrations and exercises in laboratory. Students will gain knowledge of mycology and select diseases caused by fungi within Ascomycota, Basidiomycota and the fungal-like Oomycota. Diseases caused by bacteria, nematodes, viruses, parasitic plants and abiotic damage are also examined. Lectures will include information concerning the history and importance of plant pathology, mycology, bacteriology, nematology, virology, infection process, genetics of host and microorganism interactions, epidemiology of diseases and disease control strategies. In the hands-on laboratory period the student will learn laboratory skills, gain experience using the microscope, work with microorganisms, learn diagnostic skills, and be able to recognize 30 plant diseases. prereq: BIOL 1009 or equiv
PLPA 8123 - Research Ethics in Plant and Environmental Sciences
Credits: 0.5 [max 0.5]
Course Equivalencies: APSc/PBio/PlPa/Soil 8123
Grading Basis: S-N or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
History/values relating to research/scholarship. Social responsibility, reporting misconduct. Authorship. Plagiarism. Peer review. Copyright, intellectual property. Conflicts of interest. Research data management. Fiscal responsibility/management. Environmental health/safety. Research involving humans/animals. Mentorship. Presentations by faculty, invited speakers. Meets during first seven weeks of spring semester. prereq: Enrolled in a plant/environmental grad research program
PLPA 8200 - Plant Pathology Seminar
Credits: 1.0 [max 1.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Students enrolled in PlPa 8200 will gain experience and expertise in the area of oral scientific communication. Through participation in a regular departmental seminar series, students will be exposed to a variety of seminar preparation and presentation techniques. Working one-on-one with a Seminar Advisor and the course Instructor, students will select and appropriately define a seminar topic, identify pertinent literature, prepare an effective abstract, and prepare and present a public seminar on the selected topic. Students will further interact with classmates and other participants in the departmental seminar series through public question and answer periods and by moderating individual seminar sessions. PlPA 8200 will be conducted in hybrid format, providing opportunities for in person and online (Zoom) participation in a synchronous manner.
PLPA 8005 - Supervised Classroom or Extension Teaching Experience
Credits: 1.0 -2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Teaching experience in Plant Pathology. Discussions about effective teaching to strengthen skills and develop a personal teaching philosophy. prereq: instr consent
PLPA 8104 - Plant Virology
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Characteristics, biology, epidemiology, and control of plant diseases caused by viruses. prereq: 5480
PLPA 8105 - Plant Bacteriology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Bacteria interact with plants in various ways depending upon environmental conditions, nutrient status, and host plant genotypes. The outcome of these interactions can result in the plant associated bacteria being pathogens, or mutualists. In the Plant Bacteriology course, we will examine several bacterial diseases in-depth to understand the disease cycles, epidemiology, mechanisms of pathogenesis, beneficial microbes, and means of disease control. The laboratory section will focus on techniques used to identify bacteria, for inoculating plants, isolating bacteria from plant material, and methods to understand the plant-bacterial interactions. The first hour of most class sessions will consist primarily of lectures by the instructor followed by group discussion of assigned readings. Laboratory sessions will occur for 90 minutes and are designed to illustrate concepts presented during the lecture/discussion sessions. prereq: 5480
PLPA 5003 - Diseases of Forest and Shade Trees
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course provides an overview of tree diseases in urban and forested areas. It covers diseases that have had a significant impact on society such as Dutch Elm disease; oak wilt, chestnut blight, white pine blister rust, sudden oak death and many others. It also provides an overview of important cankers, leaf diseases, wilts, rusts, root rots and other tree problems. Laboratory sessions enable students to get hands-on experience identifying disease agents, examining symptoms and learning appropriate control procedures. Emphasis will also be placed on ecological processes, biological and cultural control, and host-parasite interactions. This course should be of value to anyone interested in biological sciences, natural resources or ecology. It is a must or individuals that will have a career in natural resources but should also be useful to those interested in maintaining healthy trees at home, in urban areas or woodlands. Alumni of the University working with trees or woody ornamentals indicate this is one of the most important courses you can take as a student.
PLPA 5202 - Field Plant Pathology
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: S-N or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Characteristics of a variety of plant diseases. Field trips to observe symptoms and effects of diseases, and to learn about prevention and control of diseases in field, forest, golf course, greenhouse, nursery, orchard, and urban environments.
PLPA 5203 - Introduction to Fungal Biology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Spring Odd Year
Fungi are a critical component of the diversity and function of terrestrial ecosystems, affecting decomposition, plant nutrient uptake, and agricultural practices. Key components of fungal biology, including ecology, genetics, life cycles and diversity. Labs provide hands on experience with a diverse range of organisms. prereq: BIOL 1009 or equiv
PLPA 5300 - Current Topics in Molecular Plant Pathology
Credits: 1.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Current Topics in Molecular Plant Pathology is a highly interactive class in which students read, discuss, and critique pivotal publications in the field of molecular plant pathology. Specific topics will change from year to year, but will generally include subjects such as plant-microbe communication, diversity and evolution of plant-microbe associations, genomic analysis of pathogens (symbionts) and plant host responses, and mechanisms of pathogenicity. prereq: Introductory courses in plant pathology or microbiology; genetics; molecular biology or genomics; or consent of instructor
PLPA 5301 - Large Scale Omic Data in Plant Biology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Introduction to large scale data in plant biology. Emphasizes model plants and important agricultural crops focusing on new approaches and technologies in the field. Fundamentals, acquisition, and analysis of high-throughput DNA and RNA sequencing, high-throughput plant phenotyping, functional and comparative genomics, epigenomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and microbiomics. prereq: Intro course in genetics or instr consent
PLPA 5303 - Data Visualization in Plant and Microbial Biology
Credits: 3.0 [max 31.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Data Visualization in Plant and Microbial Biology is a course for graduate and advanced undergraduate students interested in developing skills to visualize common datasets in plant and microbial research. Students will learn fundamentals of data visualization and reproducibility that are common approaches to present plant and microbial biological data. The topics to be covered in the course are not limited to but can include fundamentals of proper data visualization techniques, principles of manuscript figure design, differences between manuscript, poster, presentation, and communication data visualizations, and how to ensure that analysis and visualizations are reproducible. The class will consist of lectures, discussions, group activities, and lots of hands-on learning and analysis. prereq: Limited experience with R software is recommended, but not required.
PLPA 5444 - Ecology, Epidemiology, and Evolutionary Biology of Plant-Microbe Interactions
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Concepts and recent research in the ecology, epidemiology, and evolutionary/coevolutionary biology of plant-microbe interactions spanning the range from parasitic to mutualistic in agricultural and natural habitats. prereq: Intro plant pathology or advanced biology coursework recommended
PLPA 5660 - Plant Disease Resistance and Applications
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Fundamentals of disease resistance in plants and the genetics of host-parasite interactions as they relate to the sustainable control of plant diseases. Examples explored at the Mendelian, populational, and molecular level of organization. prereq: 2001, BIOL 4003
PLPA 8103 - Plant-Microbe Interactions
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Genetics, physiology, and molecular biology of plant-microbe interactions. Communication between plants/microbes. Signal transduction, control of gene expression, symbiosis/parasitism, plant host response mechanisms, plant disease physiology. prereq: Intro course in plant pathology or molecular biology or equiv
AGRO 5121 - Applied Experimental Design
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: Agro 5121/Ent 5121
Typically offered: Every Spring
Principles of sampling methodologies, experimental design, and statistical analyses. Methods/procedures in generating scientific hypotheses. Organizing, initiating, conducting, and analyzing scientific experiments using experimental designs and statistical procedures. prereq: Stat 5021 or equiv or instr consent
AGRO 5431 - Applied Plant Genomics and Bioinformatics
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Analysis, interpretation, visualization of large plant genomic datasets. Basic computer programming, applying large-scale genomics to answer basic/applied biological questions, understanding limitations of each application, presenting concise visual findings from large-scale datasets. prereq: Grad student or [undergrad with genetics course]
BIOL 5272 - Applied Biostatistics
Credits: 4.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Biol 3272Biol 3272H//Biol 5272
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Conceptual basis of statistical analysis. Statistical analysis of biological data. Data visualization, descriptive statistics, significance tests, experimental design, linear model, simple/multiple regression, general linear model. Lectures, computer lab. prereq: High school algebra; BIOL 2003 recommended.
SOIL 5611 - Soil Biology and Fertility
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: ESPM 3612W/Soil 5611
Typically offered: Every Fall
Properties of microorganisms that impact soil fertility, structure, and quality. Nutrient requirements of microbes and plants, and mineral transformations in biogeochemical cycling. Symbiotic plant/microbe associations and their role in sustainable agricultural production. Biodegradation of pollutants and bioremediation approaches. prereq: Biol 1009 or equiv, Chem 1021 or equiv; Soil 2125 recommended
STAT 5021 - Statistical Analysis
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Intensive introduction to statistical methods for graduate students needing statistics as a research technique. prereq: college algebra or instr consent; credit will not be granted if credit has been received for STAT 3011
PLPA 8777 - Thesis Credits: Master's
Credits: 1.0 -18.0 [max 50.0]
Grading Basis: No Grade
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
(No description) prereq: Max 18 cr per semester or summer; 10 cr total required [Plan A only]
PLPA 8300 - Plant Pathology Project
Credits: 1.0 -6.0 [max 24.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Laboratory or library projects for Plan B master's students in plant pathology.
PLPA 5300 - Current Topics in Molecular Plant Pathology
Credits: 1.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Current Topics in Molecular Plant Pathology is a highly interactive class in which students read, discuss, and critique pivotal publications in the field of molecular plant pathology. Specific topics will change from year to year, but will generally include subjects such as plant-microbe communication, diversity and evolution of plant-microbe associations, genomic analysis of pathogens (symbionts) and plant host responses, and mechanisms of pathogenicity. prereq: Introductory courses in plant pathology or microbiology; genetics; molecular biology or genomics; or consent of instructor
PLPA 5480 - Principles of Plant Pathology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course is intended for graduate students and undergraduate students in their third or fourth year that are interested in learning about principles of plant pathology, diseases that affect plants, microbiology and microbial and plant interactions. In this course students will learn principles of plant pathology through lectures and demonstrations and exercises in laboratory. Students will gain knowledge of mycology and select diseases caused by fungi within Ascomycota, Basidiomycota and the fungal-like Oomycota. Diseases caused by bacteria, nematodes, viruses, parasitic plants and abiotic damage are also examined. Lectures will include information concerning the history and importance of plant pathology, mycology, bacteriology, nematology, virology, infection process, genetics of host and microorganism interactions, epidemiology of diseases and disease control strategies. In the hands-on laboratory period the student will learn laboratory skills, gain experience using the microscope, work with microorganisms, learn diagnostic skills, and be able to recognize 30 plant diseases. prereq: BIOL 1009 or equiv
PLPA 8005 - Supervised Classroom or Extension Teaching Experience
Credits: 1.0 -2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Teaching experience in Plant Pathology. Discussions about effective teaching to strengthen skills and develop a personal teaching philosophy. prereq: instr consent
PLPA 8103 - Plant-Microbe Interactions
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Genetics, physiology, and molecular biology of plant-microbe interactions. Communication between plants/microbes. Signal transduction, control of gene expression, symbiosis/parasitism, plant host response mechanisms, plant disease physiology. prereq: Intro course in plant pathology or molecular biology or equiv
PLPA 8123 - Research Ethics in Plant and Environmental Sciences
Credits: 0.5 [max 0.5]
Course Equivalencies: APSc/PBio/PlPa/Soil 8123
Grading Basis: S-N or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
History/values relating to research/scholarship. Social responsibility, reporting misconduct. Authorship. Plagiarism. Peer review. Copyright, intellectual property. Conflicts of interest. Research data management. Fiscal responsibility/management. Environmental health/safety. Research involving humans/animals. Mentorship. Presentations by faculty, invited speakers. Meets during first seven weeks of spring semester. prereq: Enrolled in a plant/environmental grad research program
PLPA 8200 - Plant Pathology Seminar
Credits: 1.0 [max 1.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Students enrolled in PlPa 8200 will gain experience and expertise in the area of oral scientific communication. Through participation in a regular departmental seminar series, students will be exposed to a variety of seminar preparation and presentation techniques. Working one-on-one with a Seminar Advisor and the course Instructor, students will select and appropriately define a seminar topic, identify pertinent literature, prepare an effective abstract, and prepare and present a public seminar on the selected topic. Students will further interact with classmates and other participants in the departmental seminar series through public question and answer periods and by moderating individual seminar sessions. PlPA 8200 will be conducted in hybrid format, providing opportunities for in person and online (Zoom) participation in a synchronous manner.
PLPA 5003 - Diseases of Forest and Shade Trees
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course provides an overview of tree diseases in urban and forested areas. It covers diseases that have had a significant impact on society such as Dutch Elm disease; oak wilt, chestnut blight, white pine blister rust, sudden oak death and many others. It also provides an overview of important cankers, leaf diseases, wilts, rusts, root rots and other tree problems. Laboratory sessions enable students to get hands-on experience identifying disease agents, examining symptoms and learning appropriate control procedures. Emphasis will also be placed on ecological processes, biological and cultural control, and host-parasite interactions. This course should be of value to anyone interested in biological sciences, natural resources or ecology. It is a must or individuals that will have a career in natural resources but should also be useful to those interested in maintaining healthy trees at home, in urban areas or woodlands. Alumni of the University working with trees or woody ornamentals indicate this is one of the most important courses you can take as a student.
PLPA 5202 - Field Plant Pathology
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: S-N or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Characteristics of a variety of plant diseases. Field trips to observe symptoms and effects of diseases, and to learn about prevention and control of diseases in field, forest, golf course, greenhouse, nursery, orchard, and urban environments.
PLPA 5203 - Introduction to Fungal Biology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Spring Odd Year
Fungi are a critical component of the diversity and function of terrestrial ecosystems, affecting decomposition, plant nutrient uptake, and agricultural practices. Key components of fungal biology, including ecology, genetics, life cycles and diversity. Labs provide hands on experience with a diverse range of organisms. prereq: BIOL 1009 or equiv
PLPA 5301 - Large Scale Omic Data in Plant Biology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Introduction to large scale data in plant biology. Emphasizes model plants and important agricultural crops focusing on new approaches and technologies in the field. Fundamentals, acquisition, and analysis of high-throughput DNA and RNA sequencing, high-throughput plant phenotyping, functional and comparative genomics, epigenomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and microbiomics. prereq: Intro course in genetics or instr consent
PLPA 5303 - Data Visualization in Plant and Microbial Biology
Credits: 3.0 [max 31.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Data Visualization in Plant and Microbial Biology is a course for graduate and advanced undergraduate students interested in developing skills to visualize common datasets in plant and microbial research. Students will learn fundamentals of data visualization and reproducibility that are common approaches to present plant and microbial biological data. The topics to be covered in the course are not limited to but can include fundamentals of proper data visualization techniques, principles of manuscript figure design, differences between manuscript, poster, presentation, and communication data visualizations, and how to ensure that analysis and visualizations are reproducible. The class will consist of lectures, discussions, group activities, and lots of hands-on learning and analysis. prereq: Limited experience with R software is recommended, but not required.
PLPA 5444 - Ecology, Epidemiology, and Evolutionary Biology of Plant-Microbe Interactions
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Concepts and recent research in the ecology, epidemiology, and evolutionary/coevolutionary biology of plant-microbe interactions spanning the range from parasitic to mutualistic in agricultural and natural habitats. prereq: Intro plant pathology or advanced biology coursework recommended
PLPA 5660 - Plant Disease Resistance and Applications
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Fundamentals of disease resistance in plants and the genetics of host-parasite interactions as they relate to the sustainable control of plant diseases. Examples explored at the Mendelian, populational, and molecular level of organization. prereq: 2001, BIOL 4003
PLPA 8104 - Plant Virology
Credits: 2.0 [max 2.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Characteristics, biology, epidemiology, and control of plant diseases caused by viruses. prereq: 5480
PLPA 8105 - Plant Bacteriology
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Bacteria interact with plants in various ways depending upon environmental conditions, nutrient status, and host plant genotypes. The outcome of these interactions can result in the plant associated bacteria being pathogens, or mutualists. In the Plant Bacteriology course, we will examine several bacterial diseases in-depth to understand the disease cycles, epidemiology, mechanisms of pathogenesis, beneficial microbes, and means of disease control. The laboratory section will focus on techniques used to identify bacteria, for inoculating plants, isolating bacteria from plant material, and methods to understand the plant-bacterial interactions. The first hour of most class sessions will consist primarily of lectures by the instructor followed by group discussion of assigned readings. Laboratory sessions will occur for 90 minutes and are designed to illustrate concepts presented during the lecture/discussion sessions. prereq: 5480
AGRO 5121 - Applied Experimental Design
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: Agro 5121/Ent 5121
Typically offered: Every Spring
Principles of sampling methodologies, experimental design, and statistical analyses. Methods/procedures in generating scientific hypotheses. Organizing, initiating, conducting, and analyzing scientific experiments using experimental designs and statistical procedures. prereq: Stat 5021 or equiv or instr consent
AGRO 5431 - Applied Plant Genomics and Bioinformatics
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Analysis, interpretation, visualization of large plant genomic datasets. Basic computer programming, applying large-scale genomics to answer basic/applied biological questions, understanding limitations of each application, presenting concise visual findings from large-scale datasets. prereq: Grad student or [undergrad with genetics course]
BIOL 5272 - Applied Biostatistics
Credits: 4.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Biol 3272Biol 3272H//Biol 5272
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Conceptual basis of statistical analysis. Statistical analysis of biological data. Data visualization, descriptive statistics, significance tests, experimental design, linear model, simple/multiple regression, general linear model. Lectures, computer lab. prereq: High school algebra; BIOL 2003 recommended.
SOIL 5611 - Soil Biology and Fertility
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: ESPM 3612W/Soil 5611
Typically offered: Every Fall
Properties of microorganisms that impact soil fertility, structure, and quality. Nutrient requirements of microbes and plants, and mineral transformations in biogeochemical cycling. Symbiotic plant/microbe associations and their role in sustainable agricultural production. Biodegradation of pollutants and bioremediation approaches. prereq: Biol 1009 or equiv, Chem 1021 or equiv; Soil 2125 recommended
STAT 5021 - Statistical Analysis
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Intensive introduction to statistical methods for graduate students needing statistics as a research technique. prereq: college algebra or instr consent; credit will not be granted if credit has been received for STAT 3011