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Master of Science (MS)

Program Overview & Features
Our MS program provides a foundation in biological research for those students who have not had previous research experience. Students build on foundational coursework to complete a research project, under the guidance of a faculty mentor.

  • Application to the Master of Science Program in Biological Sciences is found here

MS Program Requirements:
Courses
As a foundation for the research experience, MS candidates complete 18 credit hours of coursework in their first two years in the program. Courses cover advanced topics in the biological sciences and teach critical thinking, analysis of primary scientific literature, and experimental design.
Seminars
To develop oral presentation skills, MS candidates enroll in a seminar course each semester of their first two years.  Each student presents one seminar, either on a journal article or the student’s research project.  MS candidates also attend the departmental seminar series, featuring distinguished scientists from inside and outside the university.

Rotations
In the first year, MS candidates perform two or three 10-week research rotations prior to joining a laboratory and embarking on a thesis project. Rotations consist of small research projects that are designed to introduce the student to research opportunities available in that laboratory.

Research Experience
In the second year of the program, MS students complete an original research project under the supervision of a faculty mentor.  A written report describing this project is submitted at the end of the program.