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University of Colorado Denver College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

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Biology MS Degree FAQ's

Frequently Asked Questions


What is the goal of the Biology MS program?

               The Biology MS program provides students with the scientific training needed for a number of scientifically-based career paths, such as employment in research, biotechnology, industry, teaching, and consulting, to name a few.  A degree from the Biology MS program may also help students prepare for PhD programs and careers in medicine.  The goal of the Biology MS program is to train students in the scientific method.  Students will gain a set of skills and knowledge in a particular area of specialization.


What is the deadline for application to the Biology MS program?

               The deadline for application to the program is January 15, for a fall admission.


Does the Biology MS program accept students for spring semester?

               The program does not accept students in the spring semester.


How do I find a faculty research advisor?

               An invitation to apply to the Biology MS program is required prior to application.  Students should look at the MS Program Faculty profiles to first determine if the Biology MS program conducts research of interest to the student.  If so, the student should then send an introductory email to the specific faculty member conducting the research of interest providing information about the student’s career/research interests, and about the student’s academic and professional background.  The student should let the faculty member know that they are interested in the Biology MS program.  The faculty member will then respond with the need for additional information, e.g., resume, transcripts; with information about available positions; and/or with a request for a phone or in person interview.  In order to apply to that faculty member’s program (and to the Biology MS program), the student needs to receive an invitation to apply.  NOTE that an invitation to apply to a faculty member’s program (and/or the Biology MS program) IS NOT a guarantee of admission.  The application and admission process is competitive and only a limited number of students are accepted in a given cycle.


My GPA is less than a 3.0.  Can I still apply?

               The minimum GPA for application to the program is a 3.0 overall GPA in an undergraduate degree.  Students with less than a 3.0 MUST have at least a 3.2 GPA in the sciences in order to be considered.


How long does the Biology MS program take to complete?

               The Biology MS program takes approximately 2-2.5 years to complete for most full time students. 


I don’t have all of the required course prerequisites.  Can I still apply?

               Biology MS program requirements include: 2 semesters of general biology; 2 semesters of any combination of chemical, physical or mathematical sciences; and 1 semester of biological or applied statistics. Students missing any of the above prerequisite course requirements may be able to take appropriate coursework once admitted to the MS program. Questions regarding missing prerequisite course requirements should be directed to the Biology MS program Director.


What types of financial support are available for students in the Biology MS program?

               Teaching assistantships are available through the program on a competitive basis.  The application to the Biology MS program includes an application for a teaching assistantship.  Teaching assistantships generally range from $8,000-12,000 per academic year (teaching in fall and spring semesters).

              Research assistantships are available through individual faculty members and can vary in amounts.  Information on available research assistantships can be found by contacting the individual MS Program Faculty of interest.

              Additional financial support may be available through the University of Colorado Denver Financial Aid Office . 


Are there teaching opportunities in the Biology MS program?

               Teaching opportunities are available on a competitive basis.  Several courses within the Department of Integrative Biology hire teaching assistants.  Application for a graduate teaching position is part of the Biology MS program application.