Grasslands Management, Graduate Certificate

Graduate Certificate in Grasslands Management

University of Nebraska - Lincoln

  • Fully Online
  • 12
  • $590.00
  • $590.00

Program Overview

The online Grasslands Management, Graduate Certificate is designed to provide students with knowledge about the conservation, utilization and sustainability of managed grassland systems. 

Students in this multi-institutional, online Grasslands Management certificate program will learn about the conservation, utilization, and sustainability of managed grassland systems.

Through graduate-level coursework students gain knowledge in: 

  • Pasture and range management
  • Vegetation analysis
  • Root growth and utilization
  • Grassland and wetlands ecology
  • Watershed management
  • Fire ecology
  • Grasslands plants, insects and diseases
  • Basic research and educational programs in grasslands

Additional Certificates:

The University of Nebraska-Lincolns Department of Agronomy and Horticulture offers three graduate certificates in horticulture:

  • Advanced Horticulture
  • Ornamental Landscape and Turf Management
  • Floriculture and Nursery Production Management

The department is able to offer these three certificates as a member of the AG*IDEA Consortium. The Great Plains IDEA is a consortium of 20 universities in the Health Sciences and Agricultural disciplines.

Career Outlook: Grasslands represent a fundamental resource of the region that determines the environmental and economic future of the Great Plains states. Grasslands including rangelands, pasturelands, and hay lands are the principal land resource type in the Great Plains, composing more than 50% of the land surface area. Grasslands need to be managed properly to ensure long-term productivity, maintain or improve grassland diversity and health, minimize undesirable botanical composition shifts, and prevent overgrazing.

An online Grassland Management certificate makes it possible to pursue the following careers:

  • Rangeland Management Specialist/Conservationist government agencies
  • Land Steward private organizations
  • Ranch Manager
  • Extension Educator
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Co-op Manager

Admissions and Requirements

To be accepted to this program, you must have:

  1. A Bachelor's degree

  2. 2.8 GPA or above on a 4.0 scale

  3. Completed coursework

    Successfully completed at least a semester of coursework in plant science or botany

  4. Taken the TOEFL or IELTS

    (Only required if English is not your native language)

  5. A written personal statement

    In 1-2 pages, describe 1) your professional goals and career aspirations and specifically what you plan to do with your certificate, 2) background experiences, events, and/or education that have influenced your professional goals and 3) how enrolling in this certificate program will assist you in meeting your professional goals.

  6. 3 letters of recommendation

    These must be from professionals who are familiar with your work ethic or scholastic ability. Personal references from friends, relatives, etc. are not acceptable.

  7. Resume or curriculum vitae

NOTE: This program is authorized, exempt, or not subject to state regulatory compliance and may enroll students from all 50 states

To apply to this program:

  1. Complete and submit the online application for Graduate Studies
  2. Pay $50 application fees
  3. Submit required documents for the application packet to academic department

Courses You’ll Take

Core Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
AGRO 847Grassland Fire Ecology3
The course is designed to describe the ecological effects of fire on grassland ecosystems. It also provides insight into the history of fires, the people who use them and why, the parts of a fire, how fires behave in relation to fuel and weather, and the conducting and safety of prescribed burns.
AGRO 851Grassland Plant Identification2
Prereq: Admission to UNL's Graduate School, and BIOS 101 and 101L and AGRO 240, or their equivalents, recommended. Study of plants that have ecological and/or agricultural importance in the Great Plains. Plant identification, grassland ecosystems and plants' forage value, palatability and utilization by both domestic livestock and wildlife. Cultural and historical uses of grassland. Prerequisite: Admission to UNL's Graduate School, and BIOS 101 and 101L and AGRO 240, or their equivalents, recommended.
AGRO 849Watershed Management3
Study of the management of physical/biological settings and processes along with the human activities on water and watershed considering preventative and restorative strategies in a natural resource rangeland setting.
AGRO 843Ecology of Invasive Species3
Ecological principles and their application to invasive species. Discussion of population, community and ecosystem level characteristics affecting a wide variety of invasive plant and animal species. Discussions will include current global consequences and governmental policies/programs designed to limit the spread of invasives.
AGRO 848Grassland Monitoring & Assessment2
A course emphasizing the quantitative measures used in vegetation analysis, root growth, and utilization.  Vegetation sampling theory and plot selection will be covered.  Use of similarity index, health, and trend for grassland monitoring and assessment will be explained.  Basic statistics and the microcomputer will be used to analyze biomass, basal cover, frequency, and density data.
AGRO 852Grazing Ecology & Management3
This course discusses the ecological principles of domesticated livestock grazing and their application to manage grazing lands. Theoretical and applied models of plant/animals interactions will be presented. Grazing systems and their management of ecosystem services will be presented as balance between production and conservation outcomes.

Tuition & Fees

Nebraska Residents

Per Credit Hour


3 Credit Hours


Out of State Residents

Per Credit Hour


3 Credit Hours

John Guretzky, Ph.D.
Associate Professor

John Guretzky's research interests include the impact of grazing systems on the structure and function of grassland ecosystems. Guretzky's area of expertise is range and forage sciences.

Application Deadlines
  • Fall SemesterMay 15
  • Spring SemesterOct 01
  • Summer SemesterFeb 15