Agricultural & Biological Systems Engineering (MS)


Agricultural & Biological Systems Engineering, MS

On Campus 30 cr

The graduate program leading to the Master of Science in agricultural and biological systems engineering and mechanized systems management.


Graduate study may be directed toward agricultural power and machinery systems, animal waste management, animal well-being, biomedical engineering, bioprocessing, computer applications, control systems, decision support systems, environmental engineering, food process engineering, geographic information systems, global positioning systems, ground and surface water management, irrigation system design, materials handling and processing systems, monitoring and controlling biological systems, plant environment, risk assessment, soil and water conservation, solid and hazardous waste management, water quality, and other areas of engineering science and design.

Students have access to state-of-the-art research facilities and equipment. These facilities include 15 laboratories in L. W. Chase Hall, Splinter Laboratories Building, and IAPC Pilot Plant. Field research sites in Nebraska include the Rogers Memorial Farm and Agricultural Research and Development Center in Lincoln; Haskell Agricultural Laboratory near Concord, Nebraska; and Research and Extension Centers at North Platte and Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Together these facilities capture the wide range of climate, soil, and cropping systems that exist in the state.


  1. Animal Health, Welfare, and Precision Management
    • On Campus

    Required for Application:

    • CV/Resume
    • 3 Letters of recommendation
    • Personal Statement 
    • GRE is optional

    Graduate Chair

    Rebecca Wachs

    Support Staff

    Laura Buis

  2. Environmental Studies
  3. Irrigation and Agricultural Water Management
    • On Campus
    Course Number Course Title Credits
    AGEN/MSYM 854 Irrigation Laboratory and Field Course 3
    MSYM 855 Advanced Irrigation Management 3
    AGEN 953 Advanced Irrigation Systems Engineering 3
    Choose one of the following
    AGEN 841 Animal Waste Management 3
    AGEN 954 Watershed Modeling 3
    BSEN 855 Nonpoint Source Pollution Control Engineering 3
    BSEN 879 Hydro climatology 3
    Total 12
  4. Water Resources Planning and Management

Applying for Admission

Standard requirements for all graduate programs

  • Application for Admission with $50 non-refundable application fee.
  • Transcripts (unofficial): Uploaded as part of application form.

    If International: Uploads must include all college- or university-level transcripts or mark sheets (records of courses and marks earned), with certificates, diplomas, and degrees plus certified English translations.

    After admission: Official documents are required from all students who are admitted and enroll. Photocopies of certified records are not acceptable. International students enrolled in other U.S. institutions may have certified copies of all foreign records sent directly to the Office of Graduate Studies by their current school’s registrar office.

  • If applicant’s native language is not English, verification of English proficiency is required.

    When sending TOEFL scores, our institution code is 6877 and a department code is not needed.

  • If applicant is not a US citizen and expects an F or J visa: financial information.
  • Applicants must also fulfill any additional requirements the department specifies at the time of application.

Additional requirements specific to this program

  • Academic eligibility: Applicants should have completed a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in an engineering field. Applicants who have not completed a BS degree in an engineering field will be required to take undergraduate science, math, and engineering courses as selected by the BSE Graduate Committee. 
  • Minimum English proficiency: Internet TOEFL 80, IELTS 6.5
  • GRE (optional)
  • Resume/CV
  • Personal Statement:  Include a description of your 1) motivation and goals for pursuing a graduate degree; 2) relevant research and communication skills; 3) persistence or ability to overcome obstacles; and 4) examples of leadership and outreach.  Also list any specific faculty members you are interested in working with.
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Faculty: Applicants must be accepted by a faculty advisor to be admitted.

Admission Application Deadlines

For full financial consideration, students must apply by January 15 for Fall, September 1 for Spring.

Graduate Chair

Rebecca Wachs

Support Staff

Christel Burgason

Tuition & Fees
Please select from below if applicable
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See program summaries for details like application deadlines and requirements.

The University of Nebraska does not discriminate based on race, color, ethnicity, national origin, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, marital status, and/or political affiliation in its programs, activities, or employment.

UNL Graduate Chairs and staff please complete the program update form to provide edits. Updates to graduate program pages are made on an annual basis in conjunction with the Graduate Application for Admission.