Spring, Fall
Credit: 3 graduate 
Instructor(s): Anthony Slominski

Course Description

This course will explore plant ecology at the individual, population and community levels. This will include topics such as plant response to stress, population biology, and community assembly. Quantitative measures for assessing populations and communities will be addressed. Other topics including non-native species and restoration will be covered based on student background and interest. The overall goal of this course is to provide students a strong working knowledge of plant ecology and also a theoretical knowledge that will increase their abilities to address a variety of issues that they will encounter in their careers. Additionally, students will learn the skills that allow them to design and conduct experiments in plant communities and to analyze the results. Finally, critical thinking will be fostered such that students are better able to interpret information presented in the popular press as well as in trade journals.

Meeting Place and Times

Participants login to the course at a time of day that best fits their schedule. It is necessary to connect at least 4 - 6 times per week and spend at least 8 - 10 hours per week while the course is in session, either online or offline working on course related assignments, to stay current and successfully complete this 3 credit graduate course.


Dr. Anthony Slominski researches the effects of environmental change on plant and bee health, as well as plant-bee interactions.  He is currently investigating the effects of insecticides on wild bee species. 

Ph.D. 2018, Ecology, Montana State University 

B.S. Ecology, Western State Colorado University, 2009 

B.S. Environmental Sciences, Western State Colorado University, 2009 


General biology, general ecology, general statistics, college mathematics

Target Audience

Working professionals who want to increase their knowledge in the topic. Students in the MS in Land Resources Environmental Sciences - online degree program.

Time Commitment:

8-10 hours per week. If you are unfamiliar with this field of study and/or method of delivery, you may require more time.

Tuition and Fees

See the Online Tuition, Fees and Financial Aid page.

If you are also taking a face-to-face course, please refer to the MSU Fee Schedules.

Required Books/Materials

  • The Ecology of Plants
    Author(s): Jessica Gurevitch, Samuel M. Scheiner & Gordon A. Fox
    Publisher: Sinauer Associates; 3rd edition (July 24, 2020)
    ISBN-13: 978-1605358291
    ISBN-10: 1605358290
    Price: approximately $133 (new) plus shipping and handling
    Misc. info: 2nd edition (2006) book can also be used.  Approximately $65 (used)
    This book can be purchased or rented with various online retailers

Computer Requirements:

  • Internet access
  • A device and browser that pass the system check for Brightspace LE, MSU's learning management system.

This course uses a learning management system. You will learn more closer to the course start date.

For More Information

For course information: Please contact Marni Rolston at

How to Register

You must be accepted as a student to Montana State University to take this course.

Learn how to apply.

After your application has been accepted, you will register via MSU's online registration system, MyInfo.

Registration requires a PIN number. Learn how to find your PIN.

Once you have your PIN, learn how to register through MyInfo.