Animal Nutrition

The Nutrition program in the Animal Sciences Department takes a comprehensive view of animal nutrition. Our focus is on the whole animal. Studies range from applied animal feeding trials to basic studies on the metabolism of nutritive and non-nutritive components of diets. Studies can be directed toward molecular and cellular systems as well as integrated whole animal metabolism with an emphasis on quantitation and regulation. Animal models are developed for studies focused on metabolic, nutritional, and biochemical disorders in animals and humans. Two general themes exist. One theme focuses on monogastric animals and is closely linked to the Interdepartmental Graduate Program in Nutritional Sciences (IGPNS). The other theme focuses on ruminant animals and is integrated with professors and courses in the departments of Animal Sciences and Dairy Science and IGPNS. The Animal Nutrition program is supported by courses that are available in the departments of Animal Sciences, Dairy Science, Nutritional Sciences, Biochemistry, and Statistics.

Application to the Graduate School

Admission Requirements
As you apply to UW-Madison, you need to be aware of two different sets of requirements; Graduate School minimum admission requirements, and department admission requirements.
Graduate School Requirements
The Graduate School sets the minimum admission requirements for all prospective graduate students. The minimum admission requirements are:

• A bachelor’s degree from an approved (accredited) institution.
• A minimum undergraduate grade-point average (GPA) of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) on the equivalent of the last 60 semester hours (approximately two years of work).
• Every applicant whose native language is not English, or whose undergraduate instruction was not in English, must provide official scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB).
• An admitted applicant whose TOEFL (paper-based) test score is below 580; TOEFL computer-based test (CBT) score below 237; or MELAB below 82 must take an English assessment test upon arrival. You must then register for any recommended English as a Second Language (ESL) course(s) in the first semester you are in enrolled.
• International applicants must have a degree comparable to an approved U.S. bachelor’s degree and provide evidence of adequate financial resources for the anticipated duration of their program.

Department Requirements
Departmental admission requirements are in addition to the minimum requirements set by the Graduate School. The Department of Animal Sciences bases its admission on demonstrated scholastic ability, recent GRE (Graduate Record Exam) scores, letters of recommendation, and the personal statement or reasons for graduate study. Prospective students are strongly encouraged to contact faculty members they are interested in working with during the admissions process.

MS in Animal Sciences - Animal Nutrition with Research Thesis

Suggested undergraduate coursework prior to this degree program is as follows:

1. General Chemistry, 2 semesters, or equivalent with laboratory
2. Organic Chemistry, 2 semesters, or equivalent
3. Mathematics including college algebra, trigonometry and 1 semester equivalent of calculusOrganic Chemistry
4. Biochemistry course with an organic chemistry prerequisite
5. Nutrition course with a biochemistry prerequisite
6. Animal physiology, 1 semester, or equivalent

Students are admitted to this degree program by their major professor. Following matriculation, the student and major professor plan a graduate curriculum and research program. Within one year of matriculation, the student submits her/his planned curriculum to the Departmental Graduate Program Coordinator to obtain departmental approval. The student and major professor discuss membership for the thesis committee. The committee consists of a minimum of three faculty members, with preferably two of these members from the Animal Sciences Department. The student approaches the prospective committee members to invite them to become members of the committee. The thesis committee meets as needed but mainly serves to evaluate the M.S. thesis and relevant knowledge of the student in a final thesis defense exam. The final thesis exam involves an oral defense of the research topic and general knowledge of animal nutrition. Consistent with Graduate School policies, the M.S. degree in Animal Nutrition requires a minimum of 30 graduate-level credits.

Recommended Courses
1. Statistics, 4 cr ea (571, 572)
2. Laboratory course, 2 to 3 cr (e.g. Biochem 651, 660 or PathBio 500)
3. Science presentation seminar, 1 cr ea (AS 931, 2 sem)
4. Application of Monogastric Nutrition Principles, 2 cr (AS 415)
5. Ruminant Nutrition, 2 cr (AS 414)
6. Experimental Diet Design, 1 cr (AS 626)

To accommodate the student and major professor interests, the final approval of the curriculum resides with the student’s thesis committee.
This degree program is supported by the Animal Nutrition Emphasis Group in the IGPNS program. Animal Sciences faculty members also have the option of offering an M.S. degree in Nutritional Sciences as members of the Animal Nutrition Emphasis Group in IGPNS.

PhD in Animal Sciences - Animal Nutrition

Students are admitted to the Ph.D. degree program by their major professor. Following matriculation, the student and major professor plan a graduate curriculum and research program. Within one year of matriculation, the student submits her/his planned curriculum to the Departmental Graduate Program Coordinator to obtain departmental approval. The student and major professor discuss membership for the dissertation committee. The committee consists of a minimum of four faculty members, with preferably two of the members from the Animal Sciences Department. The student invites prospective faculty to become members of the committee. The dissertation committee meets as needed but mainly serves to administer an oral preliminary examination (general knowledge), a proposal defense exam, and an evaluation of the Ph.D. dissertation as a final dissertation defense exam. All exams require an oral presentation and defense of the topic. Consistent with Graduate School policies, the Ph.D. degree requires a minimum of 51 graduate-level credits.

Recommended Courses for the PhD degree:
1. IGPNS Animal Nutrition Emphasis Group seminar, 1 cr/semester (AS 931, each sem.)
2. Intermediary Metabolism of Macronutrients, 3 cr. (NS 619)
3. Minerals, 1 cr. (NS 623)
4. Vitamins,1 cr. (NS 627)
5. Ruminant Nutritional Physiology I & II, 4 cr ea (AS 875)
6. Animal Physiology, 4 cr. each (SVM Comp. Biosci. 506 and 551)

To accommodate the student and major professor interests, the final approval of the curriculum resides with the student’s thesis committee.
This degree program is supported by the Animal Nutrition Emphasis Group in the IGPNS program. Animal Sciences faculty members also have the option of offering an M.S. degree in Nutritional Sciences as members of the Animal Nutrition Emphasis Group in IGPNS.

Faculty

Mark E. Cook, Professor.
Poultry nutrition and immunology. Effect of the immune system on nutrient utilization. Immune system regulation of physiological processes. Inflammation.
Programs: Animal Sciences, IGPNS, Molecular and Environmental Toxicology Center
mcook@wisc.edu

Thomas D. Crenshaw, Professor.
Swine nutrition, macro-minerals. Interrelationships of dietary mineral balance with skeletal and renal systems of homeostasis.
Programs: Animal Sciences, IGPNS
tdcrensh@wisc.edu

Jess D. Reed, Professor
Phytochemistry of food and livestock feeds and effects of phytochemicals on animal and human health and nutrition. Nutritional interventions in cardiovascular disease.
Programs: Animal Sciences, IGPNS, Molecular and Environmental Toxicology Center, Food Science, International Agriculture
jdreed@wisc.edu

Dhanansayan Shanmuganayagam, Assistant Professor
The development and utilization of novel swine models of human disease for elucidating mechanisms and discovering targets for development of diagnostic and therapeutic technologies
Programs: Animal Sciences
dshanmug@wisc.edu

Daniel M. Schaefer, Professor and Chair
Beef cattle nutrition and rumen microbiology. Pasture forage species evaluation and utilization by beef cattle.
Programs: Animal Sciences
dmschaef@wisc.edu