Graduate Degrees

The Viticulture and Enology Graduate Degree Programs are housed within the Department of Horticulture and the Department of Food Science, respectively, at Oregon State University. Both programs offer Masters of Science (M.S.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees for individuals interested in advancing their career in the area of viticulture or enology. These degrees require advanced course work in areas related to scientific research defined by the degree program and thesis, including statistics, biochemistry, plant physiology, viticulture, botany, plant pathology, soil science, enology, food chemistry, chemistry, microbiology, etc. The course work is tailored to the needs of the student to fulfill his/her research project. A major component of the M.S. and Ph.D. program is the thesis project in which the student works with his/her graduate advisor to develop a scientific research study. This research is generally focused in one subject area but may be inter-disciplinary in nature. For example, viticulture projects may be linked to enology, entomology, plant pathology, soil science, etc. while enology projects may be linked to biochemistry, microbiology, viticulture, etc. For in-field trials in viticulture, two growing seasons are required for M.S. degree and typically take two to three years to complete the program.  A minimum of three growing seasons and four years are needed for a student to complete a Ph.D. program. Furthermore, Ph.D. projects require more in-depth analyses than the M.S. thesis, so students entering a Ph.D. program generally already have a M.S. degree or have a B.S. and show an exceptional academic record, previous research experience, and are highly motivated both in their work ethic and interest for viticulture. The duration of graduate degree programs may vary in enology as they are not tied to the field season. For more information, please contact Dr. James Osborne.

Since M.S. and Ph.D. students are conducting industry-related and important research, their projects are often funded through research grants obtained by the faculty advisor. Therefore, only a few students are admitted to the program annually based on grant funding availability. Admission to the graduate program is highly competitive, and only the best students are selected. To meet the minimum requirements for a graduate degree focusing on viticulture, students interested in applying must have the following:

  • B.S. or M.S. degree in one of the following areas: plant science, horticulture, biology, botany, biochemistry, or related plant science/agricultural field. If you have a B.S. but not in any of these areas but still want to get an education in viticulture, you will need to consider the B.S. or Post-Bacc programs described previously.
  • Good academic record – A strong GPA is required for admissions. The standard GPA requirement for admissions into the Graduate School is 3.0, but the individual faculty advisor may have his/her own requirements for new graduate students. Generally, a GPA of 3.5 or above is highly desirable. We do not accept students with a GPA lower than the Graduate School minimum.

If you are interested in a graduate degree but are not interested in focusing on only one area of scientific research as required by the MS and PhD degree programs, you may want to consider the Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (MAIS). This is a self-tailored degree program that can be thesis or non-thesis based. Please read more about this program online and contact faculty (see list below) about your interest in this degree option before applying.

For more information on the OSU Graduate School requirements for admission, visit the OSU graduate admissions website. An explanation of the different graduate degree programs within the Department of Horticulture can be found on their website. Please contact the Department of Food Science & Technology for more information about their graduate programs.

While there is overlap between the Viticulture and Enology Programs and the disciplines in general, graduate studies are usually focused in specific disciplines within either viticulture or enology. Outlined below are the advising professors with varying expertise and are housed in different departments within Oregon State University and/or the Oregon Wine Research Institute housed at Oregon State University. To find out specific program information about individual researchers, you can find their program pages here.  

If you believe you meet the criteria for graduate studies in the Viticulture or Enology Programs, contact the following individual to discuss your interest in graduate studies that may be specific to the discipline areas outlined. When contacting potential graduate advisors, be sure to supply them with a resume that reports your educational background (institution, major/minor, and GPA), relevant course work taken, previous work history, and a cover letter which includes a statement of intent. Also indicate whether you come with funding or will be seeking a graduate assistantship. Please note that not all faculty are located in Corvallis, OR.

Faculty Mentors for Graduate Research Studies

Viticulture-Focused Research 
 Enology-Focused Research 


For information on the university graduate school admissions requirements and deadlines for future students, please see the Oregon State University Graduate School. Please note that individual departments may have additional requirements for admission, so be sure to check out requirements in each department.

Which Degree is for Me?

Students interested in a research-based graduate degree (M.S., Ph.D.) from the Viticulture and Enology Program should try to match his/her interest to the research background of faculty in the program to identify a potential graduate advisor. The advisor can recommend which degree program to apply to.

Do you already have a BS or BA degree and want to get into the field of viticulture and/or enology? You may want to consider the postbaccalaureate (PostBacc) degree at OSU. If you are interested in viticultre, contact Kelly Donegan for more information. If you are interested in enology, contact Dan Smith


The Rod Bonfiglioli Memorial Scholarship

Applications are due to New Zealand Winegrowers no later than the 1st of March 2017.

The Rod Bonfiglioli Memorial Scholarship recipients will receive a stipend of $30,000 for conducting PhD studies plus $10,000 expenses for fees and research costs per annum for a maximum of three years giving a total scholarship of $120,000.00 + GST (if applicable).

The selection panel shall consider the following factors in recommending the award of the scholarship: 

  • Demonstrate a willingness to work closely with the New Zealand Wine Industry.
  • The proposed research must present a clear vision of how it would contribute to the improvement of the wine industry.
  • The proposal must be of high scientific merit.
  • A clear and detailed work plan and budget.

The scholarship is open to anyone from any country, but applicants must satisfy the following criteria to be eligible: 

  • Be eligible under New Zealand immigration laws to complete the studies in New Zealand.
  • The PhD must be undertaken at a New Zealand University.
  • Candidates must be eligible to enroll in a PhD programme.

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