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Master of Plant Protection and Pest Management (MPPPM)

The Master of Plant Protection and Pest Management (MPPPM) is a non-thesis professional Masterís degree program between the departments of Entomology, Crop and Soil Sciences, and Plant Pathology.

The MPPPM program is not a research-oriented degree, but graduates have successfully pursued Ph.D. degrees related to IPM. There is no thesis requirement in MPPPM, but an IPM-oriented internship is part of the program of study.

MPPPM students working in the field

What are the goals of the MPPPM program?

  • To produce graduates with comprehensive, multidisciplinary training in Integrated Pest Management (IPM) of insect, plant disease, and weed pests of agricultural, commercial, and home commodities.
  • To train students to be proficient in solving the types of pest management problems routinely encountered by growers and other agricultural professionals, as well as urban pest control.
  • To teach IPM using a blend of pest control strategies including pesticides, transgenic crops, cultural operations, and biological control.

What are career opportunities with a MPPPM degree?

MPPPM graduates are trained for employment as IPM professionals in the pest control industry, pesticide and fertilizer services, cooperative extension, and regulatory agencies.



Specific requirements

To be admitted to the MPPPM program:

  • applicants must have an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution;
  • a minimum combined GRE score of 289 in the new grading scale;
  • a 3.0 grade point average (out of 4.0); and,
  • three letters of reference.

Any deviation from these minimum requirements, e.g. allowing significant job skills to compensate for slightly lower than minimum GRE or GPA scores, etc., must be approved by unanimous vote of the MPPPM Graduate Committee. Students must include a statement concerning the area of pest management they are interested in. Final decisions on admittance will be made by the MPPPM Graduate Committee. Each student will have a home department (Crop and Soil Sciences [CRSS], Entomology [ENTO], or Plant Pathology [PATH]) designated at the time of admittance or assignment of the internship home department.

How to apply

In order to begin the admission process, you must go to the UGA Graduate School website and look under the “Future Students” tab. Follow the instructions for your particular category, e.g., “Domestic application information.”


MPPPM Core Curriculum

Area Credits
Area I
All are required courses:
CRSS 6340/L Weed Science (4)*
ENTO 6000/L General Entomology (4)*
ENTO/CRSS/PATH 6740 Integrated Pest Management (3)
ENTO/CRSS/PATH 6250 Pesticides and Transgenic Crops (3)
PATH 6280/L Diagnosis and Management of Plant Diseases (4)*
CRSS/ENTO/PATH 6130 Internship (1)
Area II
Select at least one 2- to 4-credit course from each of the three MPPPM departments.
Area III
Electives: Select any UGA graduate course related to pest management in the student's area of interest. Please check with the Graduate Coordinator for acceptability of courses not in the three departments, CRSS, ENTO, PATH early in the program to avoid the possibility of electives not counting toward the 33 minimum credits
Total 33

* If a student has had the 400-level equivalent of CRSS 6340, ENTO 6000, or PATH 6280, then a subsituted course must be selected from the same MPPPM department.



Since the MPPPM program is a professional degree, an internship is required instead of research for a thesis. The internship is designed to strengthen a student's background in integrated pest management and to provide practical experience, such as with a research scientist, a pesticide company, or the Cooperative Extension Service.

Prior to the internship, the student will meet with the major professor and discuss such things as the general mission of the employer, nature of anticipated work, and goals of the institution related to integrated pest management. These and other types of information will need to be collected during the internship for inclusion in a written report. If possible, the student and major professor should meet 4 to 6 weeks after initiation of employment and evaluate the student's progress. It may be desirable to alter the original goals and to be observant for different integrated pest management principles during the remainder of the internship.

The recommended deadlines for completing the internship is the first week of the last term, and the exit exam NLT halfway through the last term.

Internship report

An internship report is required and should be reasonably concise, substantial in character, and reflective of biological principles related to integrated pest management. The report should demonstrate to the MPPPM coordinating committee that the student understands basic and practical implications of integrated pest management and has the ability to: (a) organize information in a clear manner, (b) produce a professionally useful and technically acceptable report (supervisor can verify that privileged information is being used properly), and (c) present material in a well-structured form, written in acceptable English.

The report should include:

  1. Title: The title should be descriptive of the nature of the work.
  2. Title page: This should include title, name of student, previous academic degree(s), date of internship, name of employer, name of supervisor, degree program.
  3. Approval page: Signatures of all members of the MPPPM coordinating committee and internship supervisor(s).
  4. Table of contents
  5. Introduction: This section should cover two important points: (1) a description of the employer, its mission, and how its mission relates to integrated pest management, and (2) the anticipated goals of the student (it may be desirable to prepare an initial draft of this).
  6. Description of work: Details should be presented concerning the nature of day-to-day activities and various procedures used during the internship.
  7. Results: Factual information (data) of accomplishments and "failures" should be presented in this section. The information may be either, or both, objective or subjective, and it may be presented in the text, tables, and/or figures.
  8. Discussion: The Results information should be evaluated, interpreted, and discussed. The discussion should demonstrate independent thinking and an understanding of principles of integrated pest management. Although not required, references may be used to support conclusions.
  9. Summary: In this optional section, the internship can be evaluated: how was it important, problems encountered, how could it be improved, etc.
  10. Literature cited (if needed): Cite pertinent references.
  11. Appendix: Include information that is not suitable for the Results section.

The report will be typed on 8.5" x 11" paper. The margins and page numbers should correspond to the Graduate School requirements for theses and dissertations. Section headings, tables, and figures should follow the guidelines set forth by a discipline journal. The length of the report should be commensurate with the internship; the number of pages is not very significant, but the report(s) should be representative of the nature and variety of activities performed.

A grade of "I" (incomplete) will be assigned to the Internship until the MPPPM coordinating committee has approved the internship report. Furthermore, students should be expected to complete the report during the semester following the internship semester.

Students on academic probation may not enroll for an internship.


Exit Examination

The Master Degree of Plant Protection and Pest Management Program (MPPPM) has a final examination requirement of all students. The purpose of the examination is to measure education capabilities that encompass the entire program of the student.

The examination consists of a written exam that is taken after all courses have been completed and will be administered by the student's advisor. The written exam will cover specific information and general concepts learned during the overall graduate program, including prerequisites, and core courses in area I. The student must have the internship report approved before taking the final exam to complete requirements for graduation.

It is recommended that the student talk with his/her Major Professor about the range of pest management information with which they should be familiar during their program. It is also advisable to contact the Exit Examiner members of the Coordinating Committee before the last semester to request any recommended reading in preparation for the exam.


Advisory Committee

The MPPPM coordinating committee is advisory to students. Each student is assigned a major advisor whose academic credentials conform to Graduate School requirements for faculty advisors. The major advisor and student will develop a program of study and internship. An internship report by the student needs to be approved by the MPPPM coordinating committee prior to taking a final comprehensive exam over the program of study.

2015 MPPPM Coordinating Committee

Athens Campus   Tifton Campus
Will Hudson
Department of Entomology
Tim Grey
Department of Crop & Soil Sciences
Bill Vencill
Department of Crop & Soil Sciences
Bhabesh Dutta
Department of Plant Pathology (PATH)
Jean Williams-Woodward
Department of Plant Pathology
Alton Sparks, Jr.
Department of Entomology


University of Georgia (UGA) College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES)