IU trustees approve three new graduate degree programs

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One of the new degree programs will be housed within the IU School of Informatics and Computing. Photo by James Brosher, IU Communications

The Indiana University Board of Trustees has approved three new graduate degree programs, including a Master of Science in intelligent systems engineering, the final component of the university's new program in intelligent systems engineering established in 2015.

The intelligent systems engineering program, the first engineering program in the history of the IU Bloomington campus, is housed within the IU School of Informatics and Computing. The program already offers bachelor's and Ph.D. degrees.

Using the university's accelerated master's path, the new degree program provides students pursuing a bachelor's degree in the program the chance to earn a master's degree in only two semesters. The degree also provides students in the Ph.D. program the opportunity to earn a master's degree as they complete doctoral coursework.

Additionally, the program aligns with state business leaders' long-range plan to significantly increase the proportion of Indiana residents with postgraduate degrees in STEM-related fields.

A second one-year master's degree program has also been approved. The Master of Environmental Sustainability, housed in the IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs, leverages the school's strengths in environmental science and management to provide a shorter and less costly path to a master's degree in the field compared to other similar programs.

The degree will position graduates to enter some of the fastest growing fields in sustainability, such as environmental protection, municipal sustainability, water resource management, and natural resources conservation and restoration.

The third newly approved degree is a Doctor of Public Health. The degree, housed in the IU School of Public Health-Bloomington, will provide training in population health, a growing area of study that focuses on the health outcomes of groups, the distribution of those outcomes within these groups, and related public policies.

The degree will train the next generation of leaders in public and private organizations whose missions relate to delivery of prevention programs and health care interventions -- as well as prepare them to influence organizational and policy structures that support more effective approaches to public health in their communities.

Only three other universities in the Midwest offer similar degrees accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health. Only 38 U.S. institutions offer doctoral degrees in public health.

The degrees approved by the trustees still await final approval by the Indiana Commission for Higher Education.