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School of Environment and Natural Resources

Darby Creek water sampling
Ecosystem Science

Ecosystem Science

The field of Ecosystem Science is the study of the multiple components of ecological systems and how those systems interact.  As ecological theories are discovered and developed, they become applied in the overall Ecosystem Science specialization. Ecosystem Science provides the framework for identifying and understanding environmental challenges such as land degradation, water pollution, and loss of species and habitat. Knowledge and theory developed in Ecosystem Science is applied in the Ecological Restoration Specialization.

The School of Environment and Natural Resources (SENR) faculty and the Environment and Natural Resources Graduate Program (ENRGP) at The Ohio State University have strong research programs looking at fundamental processes that occur in ecological systems. Graduate students, supervised by faculty members in this specialization, are trained to carry out applied research on communities and ecosystems. The Wilma H. Schiermeier Olentangy River Wetland Research Park provides SENR  particular strength in the area of wetlands and freshwater ecology.

Active Graduate Advisors:

Peter Curtis (EEOB)
Konrad Dabrowski
Matt Davies
Scott Demyan
Rachel Gabor
Matthew Hamilton
Rattan Lal
Brian Lower
Steve Lyon
Sayeed Mehmood
Risa Pesapane
William Peterman
Lauren Pintor
Kaiguang Zhao

Recent Theses and Dissertations (available on OhioLink*)

K. Clark MS Diverse Applications of Magnetotactic Bacteria
E. Comes MS Geomorphic Response to Lowhead Dam Removal in a Mid-Sized Urban River System
R. Davis MS Monitoring fish-community contaminant body burdens following lowhead dam removal in an urban river system

A. Dubey**


Climate Change and Hydrological Budget

B. Jackson PhD

The Role of Wildfire in Shaping the Structure and Function of California 'Mediterranean' Stream-riparian Ecosystems in Yosemite National Park

A. Kautza PhD Consequences of Landscape Change on Riverine Food Webs and Terrestrial -Aquatic Linkages

S. McCarthy


Sedimentation and Erosion Patterns in Created Freshwater Riverine Wetlands

L. Perez-Guzman


Nanostructural Studies of Protein Mms6 using Atomic Force Microscopy

L. Perez-Guzman PhD Microbial Activity, Abundance and Diversity in Organic and Conventional Agricultural Soils Amended with Biochars
M. Pollock MS Geomorphic Differences between Unmined and Surface Mined Lands in Southeastern Ohio
L. Rieck PhD Associations between hydrogeomorphic characteristics and biotic community dynamics in urban streams of Columbus, Ohio, USA
B. Silliman MS Production of road born sediment of an agricultural road network in southeast Ohio
O. Smith MS Effects of Agricultural Land Conversion and Landscape Connectivity on Movement, Survival, and Abundance of Northern Bobwhites (Colinus viginianus) in Ohio 
P. Soltesz MS Large Wood Dynamics in Central Appalachian Hemlock Headwater Ravines
P. Tagwireyi PhD Ant and Spider Dynamics in Complex Riverine Landscapes of the Scioto River Basin, Ohio
K. Travonya MS Variability in Invertebrate Trophic Networks along Stream Nutrient Gradients
M. Zapata MS Spatial and temporal variability in aquatic-terrestrial trophic linkages in a subtropical estuary

*OhioLink articles available to current OSU students, faculty and staff
**Student advised by SENR faculty in other OSU graduate programs