What degree will I graduate with?
You will graduate with a Master of Forest Conservation degree (MFC). The Faculty of Forestry at the University of Toronto developed this interdisciplinary, course-based degree program in the early 90s in response to a lack of specialized professionals with knowledge of forestry practices and conservation biology, as well as forest economics, foresty governance and policy, and the social and cultural issues associated with the conservation of our forest resources in Canada and around the world. Though enrollment in traditional Bachelor of Forestry programs was dropping, students were discovering forestry and forest conservation through broader studies in the environment, or biological or social sciences, and the MFC program provided these students with a graduate program that gave them the specialized knowledge necessary to work in these fields, but exposed them to the context in which forestry and forest conservation occurred. There are now over 300 MFC alumni working in Canada and all over the world in all sectors.


What are the career opportunities after the program?
The interdisciplinary nature of the MFC program enables graduates to provide leadership in a vast array of sectors such as science, business, non-governmental organizations, all levels of government and academia in areas of conservation, planning, urban forestry, forest management, and forest governance, policy and economics — all critical to the stewardship and conservation of the world’s forests. You can tailor your degree towards specific areas within forestry or forest conservation by the electives you choose, the internship you complete, and the topic you choose for your major paper.

The MFC program is accredited.  Accreditation widens the job market for our students, to include positions that require registered professional foresters.


What do professional foresters do?
Registered Professional Foresters (RPFs) provide services related to the development, management, conservation and sustainability of forests and urban forests. (www.opfa.ca/forestry-students#accredited)


What is the difference between the Master of Forest Conservation (MFC) and the Master of Science in Forestry (MScF)?
While students enrolled in the MScF program conduct focused research under the supervision of a faculty member, the MFC is an interdisciplinary, professional, course-based master’s program. MFC students do not write a thesis as the main component of their degree, although an individual major paper or project comprises one of the 15 required courses. While MScF students focus their studies to become experts on a specific subject, the variety of field and classroom-oriented courses taken during the MFC program exposes students to a broad range of topics in forest conservation. There is also a heavy emphasis on transferable skills such as the synthesis and dissemination of complex information, conflict resolution, consensus building, and effective written and oral communication.


Can completing the MFC program lead to a PhD?
Yes. Although the MFC is a course-based professional Master’s program, there are opportunities to specialize in an area of interest through the internship, major paper/project, and elective courses. Many MFC graduates have gone on to successfully complete PhD programs.


Can I do the MFC program part-time?
Yes. The MFC program is available on a part-time basis. The part-time option includes a reduced course load that is flexible. However, courses are generally not offered in the evenings or on weekends. We recommend that part-time MFC students complete the program in four years.


What does extended full-time mean?
MFC students can complete the program under the extended full time option.  Under this option, students are allowed an extra year to complete their studies while paying the same academic fees as regular full-time students.  Students do however pay full-time incidental fees for each year of registration.


Are there scholarship opportunities or other ways to generate income?
Yes. For highly qualified candidates there is financial support available from the Faculty in the form of admission scholarships, government and provincial scholarships, teaching assistantships, paid internships, and in-course awards, as well as need-based and merit scholarships.


Are there extra costs involved other than tuition and incidental fees?
Yes. There are travel costs for local and international field courses that are over and above tuition and incidental fees.  Costs associated with field camps and field trips can range from approximately $1,600 to $3,200, depending upon the field courses selected by the student.  M.F.C. field camp fees vary each year, depending upon the location of the international field camp.   There is also an internship placement fee of $200, which partially covers the cost of arranging and managing the summer internship.


What kind of academic background do I need?
Due to the program’s interdisciplinary nature, a variety of undergraduate degrees will give students a suitable background for the MFC program. These include (but aren’t limited to) ecology, environmental sciences, forestry, natural sciences, biology, geography, geology, agricultural sciences, as well as relevant social sciences such as economics, anthropology and history. Experience in management, communications, ecological monitoring and restoration, conservation planning, forestry, arboriculture, horticulture, landscape design, economics and policy are all suitable professional backgrounds for the MFC program.


What are the admission requirements?
Successful applicants will have completed a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from a recognized university (check the School of Graduate Studies admissions site for information on equivalent international qualifications) with an average of at least a mid-B in both of their final two years of study (University of Toronto 72.5–76.4%). A B+ average is required for the Environmental Studies Collaborative Program.


When is the admission deadline?
Complete online applications, including payment, will not be received after April 15. All additional documents (transcripts, referee reports, etc.) must be received by April 30.


When does the MFC program start?
The program begins in September for full-time, extended full-time and part-time students.


Still have questions?

Contacts

Master of Forest Conservation Program Coordinator

Dr. Sally Krigstin

416-946-8507
sally.krigstin@utoronto.ca


Graduate Program Admissions and Requirements

Deborah Paes, Graduate Administrator

416-946-7952
deborah.paes@utoronto.ca