Fields and Concentrations

Graduate study in Cornell's Integrative School of Plant Science is organized into five fields.  Collectively these fields provide unparalleled opportunities for graduate students to connect disciplines, creatively solve problems, and integrate complex systems, preparing them for diverse careers and futures as professional and societal leaders.

Horticulture

The Field of Horticulture includes the study of fruits, vegetables and landscape plants for the purpose of sustaining the environment, enhancing economic vitality, and improving the quality of life of individuals and their communities. The Graduate Field of Horticulture consists of four concentrations:

  • Breeding of Horticultural Crops

  • Horticultural Crop Management Systems

  • Physiology and Ecology of Horticultural Crops

  • Human-Plant Interactions

Plant Biology

The Field of Plant Biology encompasses all aspects of plant biology research from the molecular biology and genomics to the ecosystem, but with a particular emphasis on research that addresses fundamental biological questions. Students are tackling some of today’s toughest challenges; from a single strand of DNA to the global scale, plant biologists have contributions to make in genetics, medicine, climate change, agriculture and many other exciting and important areas. Historically, the Field of Plant Biology has been divided into nine concentrations; however, many biological questions are now approached at various levels, e.g., integrating molecular genetics data with evolution or integrating biochemistry with physiology and cell biology.

Plant Breeding

The Field of Plant Breeding is dedicated to the genetic improvement of crop plants for the benefit of society. Our programs range from the molecular/bioinformatic study of crop plant genomes to field evaluations in diverse New York, U.S. and global locations. The Graduate Field of Plant Breeding consists of two concentrations:

  • Plant Breeding

  • Plant Genetics

Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology

The Field of Plant Pathology focuses on all aspects of plant diseases and the biology of plant-microbe interactions at the molecular to ecosystem levels of organization. This Field is also the home for studying the biology, genetics and evolution of fungi and oomycetes. The Graduate Field of Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology consists of three concentrations:

  • Plant Pathology

  • Plant-Microbe Biology

  • Fungal and Oomycete Biology

Soil and Crop Sciences

The Field of Soil and Crop Science brings together faculty with expertise in the highly integrated disciplines of production agriculture, crop biotechnology, seed science, soil science and environmental information sciences. The field consists of the following five concentrations:

  • Agronomy

  • Field Crop Science

  • Soil Science

  • Environmental Information Systems

  • Environmental Management (M.P.S. only)