Biology, Ph.D.

A graduate degree in biology can open doors to many rewarding careers. The Biology Department’s Ph.D. program prepares graduates for a range of positions in private industry, public agencies and academia, among others. Potential job titles include principal scientist, research associate, microbiologist, research biologist, field application scientist and analytical staff scientist.

There are many benefits to getting a graduate degree. It makes you a more competitive candidate whether you are seeking a job or admission to another professional school. A graduate degree can also increase your earning potential and help you develop a professional network.

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  • An undergraduate or master’s degree in biology, chemistry or a related field
  • Transcripts of past academic performance
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS (International English Language Testing Systems) Academic scores (international students only)

Students who began the program in summer 2020 or before must follow the curriculum listed in the course catalog of the year that they entered.

Students who began the program in fall 2020 can either be grandfathered into the curriculum of the 2020-2021 course catalog or choose to follow the new curriculum.

Students who began the program in spring 2021 or after should follow the new curriculum below.

Core: 8-9 Credit Hours

  • One quantitative class (3-4 Credit Hours, choose from the followings):
  • Biostatistics (BIOL 6744), 3 Credit Hours
  • Mathematical Biology (BIOL 6010), 3 Credit Hours
  • Fundamental of bioinformatics (BIOL 6640), 4 Credit Hours
  • Research design and analysis (BIOL 8041), 4 Credit Hours
  • Bioethics and Responsible Conduct of Research, 1 Credit Hour
  • Student seminars (Ph.D. students present), 1 Credit Hour x 4

IDP courses: a minimum of 10-12 Credit Hours*

  • 8000/6000 level courses per IDP**

Qualifying Exam: 2 Credit Hours

  • BIOL 9991

Research: 53 Credit Hours

  • Research Courses

BIOL 6900 and 7000 level courses are not applicable toward the degree program

** Preliminary IDP, developed by the doctoral student and the Major professor, and approved by the Graduate Director. The qualifying exam committee can require additional classes based on identified areas of deficiencies.

Visit the catalog for curriculum details.

Students are charged graduate tuition and fees. A breakdown of the fees can be found on the site. In-state tuition is about $16,000+ per year. Out-of-state tuition is about $45,000+ per year.

Student Funding Support:
The department offers competitive graduate assistantship opportunities, which include a stipend and tuition waiver. If you are interested in these graduate assistantship opportunities, please apply as early as possible.

  • Become critical-thinking scientist
  • Be well versed in research in your area of focus
  • Be able to communicate biological concepts and applications