Skip to main content
Sign In

Admissions and Application

How to

Admission Philosophy

The goal of the Molecular Biology Program is to train outstanding research scientists, academicians and educators who will become future leaders in Molecular Biology. To accomplish this goal, students are selected who have strong academic records and a demonstrated aptitude, commitment and passion for scientific research. Applicants are considered based on past academic performance, previous laboratory research experience, recommendations and individual interviews. Students most likely to succeed have traditionally been those with intellectual achievement and creativity, first-hand understanding of laboratory research, and a strong personal desire and motivation to progress in their scientific training. The Molecular Biology Student Handbook can be found here.

Entrance Requirements

The Molecular Biology graduate program welcomes applicants from varied backgrounds, however applicants with a good undergraduate background in math and the biological and chemical sciences are most competitive and have performed best in the Program. It is expected that students will have a strong foundation in general and organic chemistry, biochemistry, and cell and molecular biology before entering the Program. In addition, successful applicants typically have undergraduate or postgraduate research experience, although this need not be cancer related.

The Molecular Biology Program requires that applicants achieve a minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.00. Foreign applicants must demonstrate proficiency in English by achieving a score of at least 80 on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL-iBT). Official TOEFL scores must be reported directly to the CU Denver | Anschutz Graduate School by the Educational Testing Service (School Code 4875). The Educational Testing Service can be contacted at

Announcement: The GRE is optional for the Fall 2019 application cycle. Scores will not be accepted for the Fall 2020 application cycle.

How to Apply

APPLICATION will open on September 1st.

To apply for admission applicants must submit the following:

  1. Online Graduate School application.
  2. A $50.00 domestic and $75.00 international non-refundable application fee [credit card (on-line only), check, or money order]. No application will be processed unless this fee is paid.

  3. One (1) official transcript of all academic work completed to date.
  4. To be considered "official", the transcripts must come from the issuing institution directly to the University of Colorado Denver Graduate Admissions. Use the following address:

    Graduate School
    Campus Box 163
    PO Box 173364
    1380 Lawrence Street Suite 1250
    Denver, CO 80205-3364

    Electronic Transcripts for all basic science graduate programs should be sent to:

  5. Three (3) letters of recommendation.
    • The most informative letters will come from Professors who have mentored you in your research experiences. Professors who have taught science classes you have been enrolled in, or whom you have worked with in an advisory capacity, are also good choices. We do not recommend that you ask postdocs, technicians or fellow students for letters. Likewise, members of the community are generally not good choices, as typically their understanding of biomedical PhD training, and hence their ability to evaluate your potential, is limited.
  6. GRE test scores, school code 4875. (Note: Submission of scores is optional for the Fall 2019 application and will not be accepted for the Fall 2020 application).
  7. TOEFL or IELTS scores and financial support verification (international students only).
  8. State of Colorado residency form (part of the on-line application).

Questions should be directed to:

Sabrena Heilman, Program Administrator
Office Phone: (303)724-3245

Financial Aid

Departmental and research grant funds are used to provide all graduate students with a stipend and to pay the costs of tuition and fees as well as the student's individual health and dental insurance. The stipend for the 2017-2018 academic year is $30,000, which is comparable to graduate programs of other universities in this region. Students can expect to receive continued financial support pending satisfactory progress in the Graduate Program. After one year of residency in Colorado, students who are US citizens or Permanent Residents are eligible for in-state tuition rates.

International Applicants - Important Information

International students must meet ALL of the requirements above and also follow the Gradate Application Process through the Office of International Admissions.

© The Regents of the University of Colorado, a body corporate. All rights reserved.

Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. All trademarks are registered property of the University. Used by permission only.