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PhD in Ecology, Evolution and Earth Systems

Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science

Drexel doctoral student LeeAnn Haaf conducts plant measurement for the Middle Atlantic Wetland Assessment Program (MACWA) of the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary (PDE). Photo credit: MACWA–PDE

The doctoral (PhD) degree program in Ecology, Evolution and Earth Systems (EEES) at Drexel University is a multidisciplinary program that emphasizes collaboration with other departments at the University, allowing for research in many disciplines, including ecology, evolution and sytematics, biodiversity, conservation, earth and environmental science. Students work closely with one or more faculty members to master their chosen area of environmental research.

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Program Overview

We evaluate applicants to the Drexel University Ecology, Evolution and Earth Systems (EEES) doctoral program on academic excellence and the alignment of their research interests with the BEES Department faculty. Students develop an academic study plan appropriate for conducting their research under the guidance of a faculty advisor and their dissertation committee. The PhD student must pass a candidacy examination and an oral defense of the dissertation, demonstrating the capacity to perform independent research. To be awarded the PhD, students must complete a doctoral dissertation and publish their research in leading peer-reviewed journals.

Graduate Student Handbook (PDF)

Program Faculty

Department faculty are dedicated mentors who expertly guide graduate students in building programs of study to meet their academic and career interests. Faculty encourage students to immerse themselves in research opportunities, discover world-class facilities and explore essential field sites. In addition, faculty help prepare students to become effective communicators, advocates and leaders who confidently share research findings with their peers and make science more accessible to the public.

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Faculty Accepting Students

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Teaching Fellow Policy

The College of Arts and Sciences regards training in pedagogy and instruction to be core to the mission of doctoral education. All EEES doctoral students must perform significant teaching duties, defined over multiple terms, while pursuing their degree. Alternate fulfillment of this requirement is at the discretion of the program director and the head of the student's home department.

Activities may include, but are not limited to:

  • Supervising teaching labs
  • Running course recitations
  • Teaching as the primary instructor
  • Leading student seminars
  • Training junior researchers in core research methods
  • Active participation in pedagogical seminars or conferences

William L. McLean III Fellowship

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University and the Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science (BEES) are pleased to offer the William L. McLean III Fellowship which supports original graduate research in environmental science and ornithology. BEES PhD students who have passed candidacy or will have passed candidacy by the end of Fall Quarter in the upcoming academic year, are eligible for this fellowship. A faculty member within BEES must support and approve the student’s application. The fellowship is for one academic year and covers stipend, fees, tuition and research expenses – such as equipment, supplies and travel. In addition, funds can cover laboratory or field support and the final stages of a PhD dissertation.

The application deadline is May 15 with selection made by late June. Funds become available at the start of the following academic year. For more information, please email

Eligibility and Requirements

Prior Fellows

Recent Dissertations

Students in our program complete dissertations on a wide range of topics. We proudly invite prospective students to review recent dissertations authored by our PhD in Ecology, Evolution and Earth Systems degree recipients.

Drexel Library: Theses, Dissertations and Projects