May 29, 2024  
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog 
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science

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Eric C. Drumm, Head
Paul D. Ayers, Director of Graduate Studies, Biosystems Engineering
Michael E. Essington,
Director of Graduate Studies, Environmental and Soil Sciences

Ayers, P.D., PhD, PE – North Carolina State
Buschermohle, M.J., PhD – Clemson
Essington, M.E., PhD – California (Riverside)
Drumm, E.C., PhD, PE – Arizona
Freeland, R.S., PhD, PE – Tennessee
Hayes, D.G., PhD – Michigan
Radosevich, M., PhD – Ohio State
Tompkins, F.D. (Distinguished Professor), PhD, PE – Tennessee
Tyler, D.D., PhD – Kentucky
Wilkerson, J.B., PhD – Purdue
Womac, A.R., PhD, PE – Tennessee
Yoder, D.C., PhD, PE – Purdue

Associate Professors
Buchanan, J.R., PhD, PE – Tennessee
Eash, N.S., PhD – Iowa State
Grandle, G.F., PhD – Tennessee
Hart, W.E., PhD – Purdue
Lee, J., PhD – Iowa State
Leib, B.G., PhD – Penn State
Logan, J., PhD – Nebraska
Savoy, H.J., PhD – Louisiana State
Tyner, J.S., PhD – Oklahoma State
Walker, F.R., PhD – North Carolina State
Ye, X., PhD – Minnesota

Assistant Professors
DeBruyn, J.M., PhD – Tennessee
Hawkins, S.A., PhD, PE – Tennessee
Ludwig, A.L., PhD – Virginia Tech
Schaeffer, S.M., PhD – Arkansas

Emeriti Faculty
Ammons, J.T., PhD – West Virginia
Lessman, G.M., PhD – Michigan State

Sherfy, A.C., MS – Tennessee

Biosystems Engineering MS
Biosystems Engineering PhD
  Energy Science and Engineering concentration  
Biosystems Engineering Technology MS
Environmental and Soil Sciences MS
Plant, Soils, and Insects PhD
  Environmental and Soil Sciences concentration  

Graduate programs leading to the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy with a major in biosystems engineering are available to graduates of a recognized curriculum in engineering, mathematics, or one of the physical or  biological sciences. A graduate program leading to the Master of Science with a major in biosystems engineering technology is available to graduates in a recognized curriculum in agriculture or other related fields. These programs emphasize the application of engineering and engineering technology to agricultural and other biological systems. Major focus areas of the program are machinery systems; environmental quality and resource conservation; instrumentation, sensor, and control systems; and bioprocessing. Depending upon the applicant’s academic background and interest area within the program, prerequisite courses may be required.

A graduate program leading to a Master of Science with a major in environmental and soil sciences is offered to graduates of recognized curricula in physical or biological sciences. The department also participates in the plants, soils, and insects doctoral program that is administered jointly by the Departments of Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science, Plant Sciences, and Entomology and Plant Pathology. For concentrations offered by these other departments, please see their sections in this catalog. Faculty in the Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science Department administer the environmental and soil sciences master’s program and the environmental and soil sciences concentration in the plant, soils, and insects PhD program. The master’s and doctoral programs are broad-based, emphasizing the application of chemical, biological, and physical principles to understand, manage, and manipulate the terrestrial environment. Within the concentration, students may select an agricultural or nonagricultural focus area in soil and water chemistry; nutrient and elemental cycling; land management and reclamation; pedology; climatology; soil biology and biochemistry; contaminant transport; and soil physical processes.

A significant aspect of graduate education beyond formal courses and thesis projects is active participation in the professional community which exists within academic departments at universities. Student/faculty seminars are one of the professionally rewarding activities of the community. Accordingly, all graduate students are encouraged to participate in ESS 503  and other departmental seminars regardless of whether they are registered for seminar credit.


To the Office of Graduate Admissions submit online application, application fee, official transcripts, and scores from the general portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). The online application procedure will also direct the applicant to submit an updated resume, three letters of reference (or three Graduate Rating Forms) from persons capable of assessing the applicant’s suitability for graduate work, and a statement of professional goals, research interests, and reasons for applying (less than one page. Each applicant will be advised about any prerequisite courses before entering a program. The student’s program of study must be approved by his/her advisory committee and must comply with the requirements of the Graduate Council.

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