From sustainable forestry and water conservation to business management, sustainability includes a wide variety of “green careers.” Earning a master’s in sustainability online degree opens doors to careers in business and government. We reviewed a number of online sustainability degree programs to provide a list of the most affordable programs for 2019.
Top 30 Most Affordable Master’s in Sustainability Online Programs 2019 Methodology
We looked at approximately 72 colleges and universities listed by the National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES) College Navigator and through internet searches on reputable sites that offered at least one online master’s in sustainability online program or closely related discipline. We narrowed our original selection of schools by applying the following criteria: national or regional accreditation, school or program ranking with at least one major publication like U.S. News and World Report, and affordable graduate tuition and fees. We then listed the schools in order of raw affordability and profiled the 30 most affordable.
Below is our list of the top 30 most affordable online master’s in sustainability programs of 2019.
#30 – Minneapolis College of Art and Design
Online Master’s in Sustainable Design
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $37,812
The Minneapolis College of Art and Design offers an affordable master’s in sustainability online designed to be completed entirely via distance learning. The 30-credit program takes just five semesters to finish. The college, founded in 1866, has a rich tradition in the arts as it specializes in art and design education at both the graduate and undergraduate level. With a small student population of approximately 800 students, each individual has the opportunity to work closely with faculty on research and design projects. The curriculum blends design theory and application, giving the student the ability to create sustainable projects based on best practices and innovative thinking.
#29 – Bard College
Online Master’s in Business Administration and Sustainability
Annandale-On-Hudson, New York
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $36,155
Bard College, located in the heart of New York City, offers an online master’s in sustainability that blends online instruction with weekend residencies over a period of two to three years. The program blends core business practices and principles while embedding sustainability competencies within each course. Featured courses include circular value chain management, finance for sustainability, operations and supply chains, and principles of sustainable management. Admission requirements include personal statement (written or recorded), samples of written work, two letters of recommendation, transcripts, personal interview, and GMAT scores. U.S. News and World Report ranks Bard College #56 in national liberal arts colleges.
#28 – SIT Graduate Institute
Online Master’s in Sustainable Development
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $35,830
The School for International Training offers a low residency online master’s in sustainable development designed to teach students to apply innovative solutions to the growing problems of environmental destruction, economic inequality, and sustainable design. Students learn to become systems thinkers and are able to identify how sustainability fits within political, cultural, and socioeconomic contexts. The program can be completed on a part-time basis in just two years as the student works towards finishing the 36-credit requirement. Residency requirements include a two-week offering in Oaxaca and two one-week residencies in Vermont. Classes include development and resistance in Latin America, foundations of regenerative leadership, and economics for sustainable development and regeneration.
#27 – Maharishi University of Management
Online Master’s in Sustainability
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $27,530
Maharishi University offers one of the most affordable online sustainability programs that prepare students to take on careers that combine core business practices and principles along with sustainability competencies. The program is accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE) to confer both doctoral and master’s level degrees to students who successfully complete degree requirements. Courses include auditing for financial accountants, business process improvement, computer concepts and applications, and ethical and regulatory environment for financial accountants. Courses are available for online viewing on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 7:30-9:00 pm and Saturday mornings from 10:00 to noon Central time or can be viewed throughout the week for students not able to view them in a synchronous manner.
#26 – Boston Architectural College
Online Master’s in Design Studies in Sustainable Design
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $24,621
Boston Architectural College offers one of the most affordable online sustainability programs in the country. The program takes just four semesters to complete. Semesters one and three include online courses with an 8-day intensive residency requirement in Boston. Semesters two and four include online courses and do not have residency requirements. The institution was founded in 1889 and is the largest independent and accredited college of design in the New England area. Core classes include energy and the built environment, leading the way to a sustainable community, sustainable systems, thesis research and design, and visual communication. BAC is recognized by U.S. News and World Report’s cohort of art colleges for 2019.
#25 – Northeastern University
Online Master’s in Business Administration Sustainability Concentration
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $23,688
Northeastern University offers an online master’s in sustainability as part of its master’s in business administration curriculum. The program is housed within Northeastern’s D’Amore-McKim School of Business. The program requires 50 credits divided into 13 core classes and five elective classes. The sustainability coursework includes sustainability and the business environment, sustainability and the economics of markets, sustainability and leadership, and sustainability and supply chain management. The program combines core business competencies with sustainability practices and how they fit within business contexts. The program is delivered entirely online and is an excellent choice for working adults seeking flexibility. Northeastern is ranked #44 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#24 – Pennsylvania State University
Online Master’s in Renewable Energy and Sustainability Systems
University Park, Pennsylvania
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $20,974
Penn State University offers a master’s in sustainability online focusing on developing students into thought leaders in the emerging green economy. The 32-credit program teaches and trains students to have the required technical depth needed to solve complex issues using innovative sustainability solutions. In addition to the core classwork, students can choose from concentrations in wind energy, solar energy, bioenergy, and sustainability management and policy. Courses include distributed energy planning and management, ethical dimensions of renewable energy and sustainability systems, management and design of renewable energy and sustainability systems, and solar resource assessment and economics. Penn State is ranked #59 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#23 – Antioch University
Online Master’s in Business Administration and Sustainability
Yellow Springs, Ohio
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $19,776
Antioch University offers one of the most affordable online sustainability programs. The university is accredited by the North Central Association, which allows Antioch to confer the degree to individuals successfully completing coursework and graduation requirements. The sustainability program’s focus is teaching students to balance people, profit, and the planet in today’s complex business environment that is focusing more on sustainability practices. The program is unique in that sustainability is the driving and foundational force of every class. In addition to core curriculum, students can choose to add a concentration in organizational and environmental sustainability. Antioch is ranked #10 in innovative schools by U.S. News and World Report.
#22 – Southern New Hampshire University
Online Master’s in Sustainability and Environmental Compliance
Manchester, New Hampshire
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $18,810
Southern New Hampshire University offers an online master’s in sustainability within its master’s in business administration coursework. The program can be completed in just over one year and focuses on applying practical and innovative solutions to a wide variety of energy-related and environmental challenges and opportunities. Students from all backgrounds are welcome to apply to the program. Those without a business background may be required to take prerequisite courses. Classes within the program may include energy and society, environment compliance and sustainability, environmental issues, and sustainability and environmental compliance. Southern New Hampshire is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
#21 – Villanova University
Online Master’s in Sustainable Engineering
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $18,473
Villanova University offers an affordable master’s in sustainability online for working individuals seeking the flexibility on an online education offered by a top ranked university. The program’s coursework is a mixture of multi-disciplinary content that combines sustainability, economics, policy, finance, engineering, and more. Classes may include economics and social equity integrators, fundamentals of sustainable energy, life cycle and impact assessment, and sustainable materials and design. In addition to core curriculum, students can choose from concentration tracks in alternate and renewable energy, environmental sustainability, international development, sustainable infrastructure and the built environment, and sustainable materials. Villanova is ranked #49 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#20 – University of Saint Francis
Online Master’s in Sustainability
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,517
The University of Saint Francis offers one of the most affordable online sustainability programs that can be completed in just 12 months’ time based on full-time enrollment. Students attending part-time can complete in just 24 months. The program is part of the institution’s master’s in business administration and trains students to understand and integrate sustainability practices within a variety of business contexts. The program is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The 36-credit program includes courses such as applied statistics for environmental studies, business policy and strategy, environmental law, financial management, and human resource management. USF is ranked #28 in regional universities Midwest by U.S. News and World Report.
#19 – University of Vermont
Online Master’s in Leadership for Sustainability
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,478
Through the Rubenstein School of Environmental and Natural Resources, the University of Vermont offers an affordable online master’s in sustainability that includes two years of coursework and three week-long residential offerings in Vermont, Washington D.C. and California. Admission requirements include application, statement of purpose, three letters of recommendation, college transcripts, and resume. Coursework may include ecological leadership seminar interactive, leadership for sustainability residential intensive and course, storytelling and communicating for change interactive, and sustainability seminar hybrid independent and interactive online course. The University of Vermont is ranked #96 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report in its 2019 rankings cohort.
#18 – Chatham University
Online Master’s in Sustainability & Business Administration
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,226
Chatham University offers one of the top affordable online sustainability programs in the country. The 57-credit degree offers core classes in business and sustainability practices. The program is designed to be completed in two years. The program starts in the fall with an option for students to start in the summer semester should they want to take more classes. Core classes include foundations of sustainability, information systems and analytics, leadership for transitions to sustainability, sustainable supply chain management, and the political economy of sustainability. Admission requirements include bachelor’s degree, undergraduate GPA minimum of 3.0, transcripts, two letters of recommendation, one-page letter of professional goals, and prerequisites of business statistics, financial accounting, and introduction to Microsoft Excel. Chatham is ranked #62 in regional universities North by U.S. News and World Report.
#17 – Franklin Pierce University
Online Master’s in Business Administration in Energy and Sustainability
Rindge, New Hampshire
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,200
Franklin Pierce University offers an online master’s in sustainable development through its master’s in business degree pathway. The program’s focus is teaching and training students the theory and skills needed to lead organizations and communities in the integration of sustainable practices that reduce environmental impact. Admission requirements include bachelor’s degree from regionally accredited institution, 2.8 minimum GPA, resume, transcripts, essay, outline of career goals, and application. Students must also have competency in accounting, statistics, and computer skills (this can be achieved before or after admission to the program). Franklin Pierce is ranked #142 in regional universities North by U.S. News and World Report.
#16 – University of Washington
Online Master’s in Geographic Information Systems
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $16,282
The University of Washington offers an online master’s in sustainability focusing on sustainability practices within the context of geographic information systems technology. The program is geared towards working adults and is offered entirely online. The program can be completed in just two years attending on a part-time basis, making it an excellent choice for busy professionals. Courses in the program may include coastal geographical information systems, geospatial data analysis, geographical information systems and decision support, international case studies of geographical information systems for sustainability management, and principles of GIS mapping. UW is ranked #59 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#15 – Green Mountain College
Online Master’s in Sustainable Food Systems
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $14,700
Green Mountain College offers one of the only online sustainability programs in the country focusing on developing food systems. The curriculum is interdisciplinary, tying together economics, ecology, social science, and more. The 39-credit degree program features 3-credit classes lasting six weeks each. Aside from the general curriculum, students can choose to add a concentration in sustainable diets and biodiversity. Additionally, students can choose to attend residency requirements, spending time learning and networking with faculty, staff, and students. As this is an online degree program, the residency experiences are not required and are completely optional. Green Mountain is accredited by New England Commission of Higher Education and is ranked #142 in regional universities North by U.S. News and World Report.
#14 – University of Arizona
Online Master’s in Engineering in Innovation, Sustainability, and Entrepreneurship
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,748
The University of Arizona offers an online master’s in sustainable development through its College of Engineering. The 30-credit program combines 12 credits of business and management courses with 18 credits in materials science and engineering. The online program is designed for individuals with a bachelor’s degree in engineering or a science discipline. The online structure of the program makes it a convenient option for working professionals seeking a graduate degree from a flagship state university. The University of Arizona is ranked #106 in national universities, #30 in online graduate engineering degrees, and #58 in best engineering schools by U.S. News and World Report.
#13 – University of Florida
Online Master’s in Sustainable Design
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,737
The University of Florida’s online master’s in sustainability is offered to those interested in sustainability within the context of design, planning, and construction. The program includes content from a variety of areas such as architecture, landscape design, urban planning, historic preservation, interior design, and building construction. The program includes online course delivery as well as three residency requirements including two to the Gainesville, Florida campus and one international study tour. The cost of the residencies is included in the tuition and fees. This low-residency online program can be completed in just three semesters. UF is ranked #35 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#12 – Montclair State University
Online Master’s in Sustainability Science
Montclair, New Jersey
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,481
Montclair State University offers an online master’s in sustainable development that focuses on developing graduates to lead and manage organizations focusing on sustainability within government, not-for-profit, and private sector contexts. The curriculum includes sustainability theory, applied practices, and leadership principles. Admission components include transcripts, personal statement, two letters of recommendation, and application. The 32-credit program can be completed on a full-time basis in just one year. Students attending part-time can complete the degree in two or three years. Montclair State University is ranked #169 in the national universities category by U.S. News and World Report for the 2019 cohort of institutions.
#11 – University of Wisconsin
Online Master’s in Sustainable Systems Engineering
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,988
The University of Wisconsin offers an online sustainability degree focusing on energy systems designed to transform energy consumption at the local, regional, national, and global levels. Clean energy principles and practices are the core focus of the degree. Admission requirements include a bachelor’s degree accredited by the ABET or its equivalent, minimum 3.0 GPA in last 60 undergraduate credits, and phone interview. The program does not require GRE test scores. Core classes include connected learning essentials, core competencies of sustainability, industrial ecology sustainability tools in context, sustainable approaches to system improvement, and sustainable systems engineering capstone. UW is ranked #49 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#10 – Arizona State University
Online Master’s in Sustainability Leadership
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,938
Arizona State University’s online sustainability degree focuses on teaching and training students to become sustainability experts within a variety of contexts and organizations. The curriculum is appropriate for individuals seeking to become their organization’s foremost expert in integrating sustainability practices. Students in the program come from a variety of backgrounds including engineering, operations, communications, finance, accounting, and more. Students are able to choose from a concentration area that aligns with their area of interest and career trajectory. Concentrations include green energy, urban planning, non-profit organizations, law, and military. Arizona State University is ranked #115 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#9 – Western Kentucky University
Online Master’s in Social Responsibility and Sustainable Communities
Bowling Green, Kentucky
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,780
Western Kentucky University offers an online master’s in sustainable development focusing on sustainability, social justice, and community development. The interdisciplinary degree combines theoretical and applied knowledge across a range of disciplines. The degree culminates with the student presenting his or her research in a symposium-style gathering featuring fellow students and faculty. Additionally, students are able to interact with community members as they apply what they learn in the program to real life scenarios. Admission requirements include bachelor’s degree from regionally accredited institution, transcripts, resume, statement of purpose, and two letters of recommendation. GRE scores are not required. WKU is ranked #34 in regional universities South by U.S. News and World Report.
#8 – Concordia University
Online Master’s in Sustainability Management and Analytics
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,542
Concordia University of Wisconsin offers one of the most affordable online sustainability degree programs in the country. The 39-credit curriculum focuses on creating and integrating sustainable practices within a variety of business contexts. The degree is embedded into the institution’s MBA coursework and provides students with essential core business knowledge and functions. Students learn how to balance profitability while conserving resources and protecting the planet through good stewardship. Students will graduate the program as sustainability experts and are often prepared for the LEED Green Associate exam. Moreover, students will have a professional portfolio created during their time in the program that can be showcased to potential employers. Concordia Wisconsin is ranked #70 in regional universities Midwest by U.S. News and World Report.
#7 – University of Idaho
Online Master’s in Environmental Science
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,864
The University of Idaho’s online master’s in sustainable development is a science-based degree that integrates content from the biological, physical, and social sciences. The 30-credit degree requires students to have completed a course in the physical sciences, biological sciences, and social sciences. Additionally, students need to have successfully completed a course in statistics, pre-calculus or higher, and scientific/technical writing. Application requirements include a bachelor’s degree, 3.0 minimum GPA, three letters of recommendation, and transcripts. The University of Idaho is ranked #165 in national universities and #103 in best earth sciences by U.S. News and World Report for the 2019 cohort of institutions.
#6 – University of Houston
Online Master’s in Business Administration in Sustainability
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,710
University of Houston offers a master’s in sustainability online as part of its MBA curriculum. The degree is ranked as one of the most affordable of its kind and is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). The 36-credit program can be completed in as little as 14 months. Students can choose from a variety of concentration areas such as environmental management, finance, human resource management, and sustainability. The degree can be completed entirely online, making it an excellent choice for working adults. Courses may include accounting for administration control, environmental law, environmental risk management, and the global environment of business. UHCL is ranked #61 in regional universities West by U.S. News and World Report.
#5 – Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota
Online Master’s in Business Administration Concentration in Sustainability and Environmental Management
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,550
Saint Mary’s University offers an accelerated online sustainability degree as part of its MBA curriculum. The degree requires 30 credits and gives students the opportunity to apply what they have learned through an international capstone experience in Barcelona, Paris, Rome, Florence, or Milan. Courses may include case studies in corporate social responsibility, ethics in data analytics, law and ethics in environmental management, and sustainability marketing. Admission requirements include bachelor’s degree from regionally accredited school, 2.75 minimum GPA, minimum 5 years of work experience, job-related work sample, and an example of quantitative analysis. No GMAT/GRE scores required. Saint Mary’s is ranked #50 in regional universities Midwest by U.S. News and World Report.
#4 – Wilmington University
Online Master’s in Business Administration with Concentration in Environmental Sustainability
New Castle, Delaware
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,438
Wilmington University offers an online sustainability degree ranked as one of the most affordable of its kind. The sustainability program is part of the institution’s MBA program that combines core business practices and theory with sustainability concepts. Admission requirements include bachelor’s degree from accredited institution as well as undergraduate prerequisite courses in accounting, economics, finance, and mathematics. Courses may include economic and financial environment in business, environmental regulations and ethical issues, organizational behavior and ethical leadership, project management with sustainable green technologies, and strategic planning for sustainable organizations. Wilmington University is ranked #230 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report for 2019.
#3 – Black Hills State University
Online Master’s in Sustainability
Spearfish, South Dakota
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,997
Black Hills State University provides an online master’s in sustainable development that can be completed entirely online. The program’s core competencies focus on developing students into sustainability experts in an emerging field that is becoming more important to organizations as environmental issues including sustainability become salient factors in running today’s complex enterprises. Graduates go on to careers such as city planners, architects, industrial technologists, policy analysts, and more. The 33-credit curriculum features courses such as communication and change, fundamentals of sustainability, environmental law and policy, and science of sustainability. Black Hills State is ranked #128 in regional universities Midwest by U.S. News and World Report.
#2 – University of Alabama
Online Master’s in Sustainable Smart Cities
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,866
The University of Alabama at Birmingham offers a unique and innovative master’s in sustainability online that focuses on the development of smart cities. Students learn how data, technology, environmental science, and renewable energy can be harnessed to create clean living spaces. The program is delivered entirely online using the Canvas platform. Delivery of course content is shared by faculty at University of Alabama Birmingham and Staffordshire University located in the United Kingdom. The unique partnership gives students the opportunity to learn from world-class faculty in two countries. The program can be completed in two years. UAB is ranked #157 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.
#1 – Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Online Master’s in Aviation and Aerospace Sustainability
Daytona Beach, Florida
Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,680
Embry-Riddle offers a master’s in sustainability online focusing on sustainability and environmental stewardship within the aviation industry. This unique program is ranked as one of the most affordable and is currently the only master’s in aviation and aerospace sustainability offered by an institution in the United States. Graduates go on to careers as aviation planning managers, health and safety managers, regulatory specialists, aviation logistics managers, and aerospace engineers. Courses include aviation and aerospace sustainable organizations, aviation and aerospace workforce development and diversity, sustainable aviation and aerospace organizational communications, and sustainability associated legal topics in aviation and aerospace. Embry-Riddle is ranked #15 in regional universities South by U.S. News and World Report.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the job duties for someone with a master’s in sustainability online degree?
With a master’s in sustainability online degree, you will be eligible for management roles within organizations and companies looking to improve their carbon footprint. The role of a sustainability manager is to advise leaders of an organization on how to lessen negative impacts on the environment.
Common tasks of sustainability managers include analysis and evaluation of an organization’s impact on the environment and to seek out ways to lessen negative impact. It is not uncommon for sustainability managers to develop methodologies for sustainability initiatives or to provide policies a company can rally around. These specialized types of managers enact policies on energy use, resource and water conservation, and waste management. Also, as with many management roles, sustainability managers often supervise a team of employees on all conservation endeavors.
Much of the work carried out by a sustainability manager is completed in an office and involves extensive research, data analysis, and writing reports. Communication is an important skill to have for the most effective managers.
Sustainability managers work full-time and are often required to travel for their job. Travel includes visiting other companies in partnership with government agencies. Travel may also occur out of the country, as organizations partner with overseas companies.
What are the admission requirements for master’s in sustainability online programs?
Admission committees evaluate an applicant’s eligibility and academic promise. To do this, certain criteria are carefully examined. The master’s in sustainability online programs on our list require a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. The bachelor’s degree needs not be in sustainability, but should be in a discipline that will allow you to study sustainability, or an aspect of it, at an advanced level. Common undergraduate disciplines include business, economic, or environmental science.
Most programs, especially at top-ranked or Ivy League research institutions, require an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better. In some instances, a low GPA may be accepted if the applicant has earned a master’s degree or offers work experience. It is important to provide a careful explanation as to why the low GPA should be accepted.
In addition to undergraduate performance, graduate exams are often required. These exams are the GRE or GMAT. Top-tier programs expect a record of satisfactory performance on graduate exams, while some programs do not require them. For programs that want test scores, you must provide scores that are less than five years old.
Additional requirements vary by program. These requirements include a statement of purpose or goals, letters of recommendation, and additional writing samples to showcase research ability.
What is the career outlook for individuals with a master’s in sustainability online degree?
The career outlook for individuals with a master’s in sustainability online degree is favorable, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). BLS reports a 14 percent growth in the overall employment for management analysts. This is a faster growth rate than all other occupations. As organizations grow and expand and seek ways to improve efficiency and conserve resources, the demand for sustainability managers should increase.
BLS indicates growth will be particularly strong in smaller consulting firms that specialize in certain industries. Organizations will seek consulting services from sustainability managers to determine how to cut costs, improve efficiency, and conserve resources. Also, government agencies will seek the services of sustainability managers and management analysts, as they search for ways to improve efficiency and lessen the negative impact on the environment.
Jobseekers may face strong competition for sustainability management roles due to the higher earnings potential and limited number of leadership positions. For individuals with a master’s degree and experience in the field, whether through research or hands-on services, job opportunities are expected to be favorable. By earning a master’s in sustainability online degree, you will provide yourself with a competitive edge when seeking employment and arm yourself with an education that will help your career trajectory.
How much money will I make with a master’s in sustainability online degree?
Individuals who have earned an online master’s in sustainability degree should expect to earn at least $65,000 with entry-level experience. According to PayScale, a global compensation research comparison and analysis organization, the average pay for a sustainability manager is $71,241.
The average pay varies with experience, though PayScale reports a positive trend. This means that individuals will earn more money as they gain experience as sustainability managers. An entry-level sustainability manager with less than five years of experience should expect to earn a total compensation of $65,000. This number includes salary, bonuses, profit sharing, and commission. With five to ten years of experience, individuals should expect to earn an average total compensation of $76,000. Experienced sustainability managers with ten to twenty years of experience earn an average of $105,000 per year. Late-career managers, those with more than twenty years of experience, also earn over $100,000.
Some employers view a master’s degree as the equivalent of two years of work experience. This is helpful when starting out your career as a sustainability manager. Also, as an individual gains experience in the field, a master’s degree can help provide a competitive edge when seeking advancement. Compensation varies by region with higher pay seen in urban locations.
How long does it take to earn an online master’s in sustainability degree?
Students pursuing a master’s in sustainability online degree should expect to spend anywhere from 15 to 24 months enrolled in the program. A traditional master’ s degree takes approximately two years to complete when enrolled full-time. However, online programs may be shorter due to summer enrollment options and a work-at-your-own-pace format.
The programs on our list take approximately 20-22 months, on average, to complete. Full-time enrollment helps shorten the time spent studying, while part-time enrollment requires less time but stretches out completion time. For individuals working full time, part-time online master’s in sustainability programs provide flexibility.
Another factor that adds time to a master’s in sustainability online program is the thesis requirement. Research intensive programs that require a thesis typically take more time than non-thesis degree pathways. There are pros and cons to each pathway. Less research means a faster completion time but does not provide you with research experience. However, many non-thesis programs do require a research project that is based on already published work.
When choosing an online program, it is important to evaluate the average completion time of the degree and how much time you have in any given week to focus on studies and research.