A minimum of 45 credits (27 coursework credits and 18 thesis credits), a thesis, and a successful final examination in defense of that thesis are required to earn a Master of Science in Aquatic and Fishery Sciences. Most master’s students in the School earn more than 45 credits in order to meet all degree requirements, and they often graduate within a two-to-three-year period.

Information regarding the supervisory committee, thesis, and final exam procedures can be found in our student guide. The UW Graduate School’s minimum master’s degree requirements are outlined on its webpage. Note that SAFS has additional requirements.

Below is a summary of the SAFS master’s degree requirements for quick reference. Students should read all of the requirements in this guide for further details.

  • Within six years, complete all degree requirements, including 45 total credits toward the master’s degree (eligible transfer credits can be included)
  • Complete the core and additional course requirements detailed in the sections below
  • Earn 27 non-thesis course credits (i.e., not from FISH 700)
  • Earn 18 credits at the 500-level or higher (9 of which can come from FISH 700)
  • Earn 18 credits of numerically graded coursework with at least a 2.7 grade
  • Earn at least 18 credits of FISH 700
  • Make satisfactory progress on degree milestones and other requirements; students should review the Timeline for Master’s Students
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0

Note that the same course may be used to satisfy multiple requirements. For example, FISH 521 counts as a 500-level, non-thesis, numerically graded course.

Prepare and apply to the MS program


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