Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world. –Nelson Mandela
Viridis Graduate Institute is on the forefront of a changing landscape in education. With our manner of living being questioned at the deepest levels by global economic crisis, a changed climate, inequality and gender injustices breaking individual and community psyches – we need now, more than ever, an education that directly addresses the drivers to these systems.
Ecopsychology is a comprehensive examination, exploration and inquiry into our manner of living. Students examine the human ecosystem, as well as organizations, institutions, communities and global societies as ecosystems interconnected to all other systems on earth. The study of interactions among organisms that create the many ecosystems on our planet and their environment is the study of home, of our ecology.
We are a species that impacts all other species and habitats on the earth. We are in relationship to all of life whether we are conscious of this or not – this is the study of our psychology. Psychology is the language psyche or soul uses to communicate and educate us about who we are and how we behave. It is a study of our behaviors, attitudes and practices and how we can envision how to change and transform those that no longer allow for flourishing.
Ecopsychology offers ways to change behaviors driving destructive patterns in our lives and how we might think about solving some of the complex interconnected social, economical and environmental problems in our world.
VGI graduates are prepared to tackle community and global issues by applying ecopsychological skills, training and knowledge toward creative, practical and inclusive solutions that effect sustainable change in any organization, institution, industry, or vocation. Our focused curriculum combined with the most creative teachers make all the difference in providing students with a high quality education that has personal and social value.
The Master of Arts in the Social Sciences with an Emphasis in Ecopsychology & Sustainability (MASSES) combines experiential and inquiry based learning in a dynamic online global classroom with instruction in natural settings (ReWilding Residency), making education a more diverse, expansive and inclusive experience. Our live interactive classes, a robust e-learning platform called OCEANS, and numerous resources make for a rich learning experience at VGI.
Applications are accepted year around, however to secure place in class application must be in by June 1 for fall program start date.
VGI will be starting our second Masters program in ecopsychology September 9, 2014. Applications are being accepted until June 1, 2014.
Tuition and Other Fees
Our founding trustees believed that all individuals – regardless of income, socioeconomic background, or geographic location – should have access to quality, cost-effective higher education. Therefore, an essential part of our mission is to keep tuition very affordable.
Note: Tuition fees does not include costs for textbooks required for courses.
Year 1: $6,000
Summer Internship: $500
IT Fee (nonrefundable): $500
Year 2: $6,000
Student tuition includes ReWilding lodging fee (shared room with VGI students). Airfare and meals not included in tuition.
Students make their own convenient flight and transportation arrangements for ReWilding Residency.
Meals provided at residency site. ReWilding Meal Fee: $350 for four day residency (Thursday evening – Sunday noon).
Twice a year (fall & spring) we meet with students for four days in a natural setting. The residency is supplemented with Arts & Letters seminars and student time in nature.
Student Internship Program
Students in final year of the Master’s and Ph.D. program will be placed in an Internship training experience in an area of their interest with one of our Educational Partners. Students will:
- Gain on-the-job experience
- Have an opportunity for permanent job placement
- Establish important local, regional and international relationships
- Benefit from Mentorship
Program Start Date
The master’s program starts off with meeting as a group at the ReWilding Residency.
We will get to know each other, begin our instruction with you and explore some of the most beautiful landscapes together.
Length of Program: 7 quarters
Year 1- 2013-14
ReWilding Residency 1: August 29-September 1, 2013
Online Courses begin: September 5 – November 15, 2013
January 6 – March 21, 2014
ReWilding Residency 2
Online Courses: April 8 – June 11, 2014
Summer quarter – Summer Internship (July – August)
Year 2 – 2014-15
ReWilding Residency 3: September 4-7, 2014
Online courses: September 9 – November 12, 2014
January 6 – March 11, 2015
ReWilding Residency 4 – Thesis Project Presentations.
Thesis Projects Due: by May 15, 2015.
Graduation: May 30, 2015
Thesis Project must be completed by May 15th to graduate May 30th.
Competency Units / Credit Equivalents
61 competency units required to graduate (60 equivalent credits) .
All degree courses meet weekly for two hours online with VGI instructor in live interactive format using HD video and audio so that everybody hears and sees each other clearly.
Viridis Graduate Institute’s online educational delivery system (OCEANS) is designed for students to learn from a variety of methods and materials. Our WebEx robust virtual classroom provides the best technology for student / teacher interaction, as well as for students to develop an interactive community on their own.
Dual Degree Options
Students may be enrolled with VGI and a second graduate school program simultaneously while pursuing a dual degree with MBA / MPA / MPP / MIA / MSN / MEM / MF / Med / MS Conservation / JD degrees.
International Students – English Proficiency Requirement
VGI programs are offered in English. Please be sure that you meet this requirement before submission of application.
Course work at Viridis Graduate Institute requires strong English language skills. VGI measures your English proficiency by either (a) your performance on the TOEFL or IELTS exam or (b) your educational background. We strongly recommend that all students whose first language is not English take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam. Minimum acceptable scores on the TOEFL exam are 600 for paper-based, 250 for computer-based, or 100 for internet-based. The acceptable minimum for IELTS is a score of 7. Students who have completed a bachelors, masters, or doctoral degree from an accredited institution in the United States or an English-speaking country will be considered for exemption from the TOEFL or IELTS.
Work experience in a related field is considered desirable, although not required. Students are selected for admission based on their academic background and related work experience.
Credits do not transfer due to the specialization of the degree. However, courses taken by the student are taken into consideration as part of the admission process.
Consideration for admission will be based not only on the completion of an earlier course of study, but also upon the quality of the record presented and assessment via an interview process to establish the candidate’s personal fitness to pursue professional work.
We look forward to your participation.