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Admissions and Application

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Admission Philosophy

Our admissions criteria are based, in part, on the requirements of the Graduate School that address prior performance criteria. They are also partly based on the program's need to recruit students with broad science backgrounds and/or work experiences in the life sciences and computing arenas.

Applicants with broad educational backgrounds are encouraged to apply to the program. The admissions committee considers individual applicants on a case-by-case basis. Preference is given to applicants with interdisciplinary training in computer science, mathematics and biology. The number of new admissions per year is restricted by available scholarship/fellowship support, the applicant's interest in relation to faculty research interests, and availability of faculty mentors. On average, the program attempts to admit three to four applicants per year.

Entrance Requirements

Advanced education or experience in computer science or allied field, and some knowledge of contemporary molecular biology is required.

Applicants must provide evidence of computation & biological skills such as official transcripts, GRE scores, employment experience, or other well -documented evidence that might persuade the admissions committee.

Students are selected on the basis of past academic performance and, where possible, individual interviews. We select students who show intellectual vigor, independence, and strong motivation to become creative and successful scientists.

The GRE General Test (verbal, quantitative, and analytical sections) is recommended, but not required for application to the Computational Bioscience Program. Applicants are expected to achieve a minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.00, or provide an explanation of lower grades. 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 GRE and TOEFL scores must be reported directly to the CU Denver | Anschutz Graduate School by the Educational Testing Service. The CU Denver | Anschutz Graduate School Code Number for the GRE and the TOEFL examinations is 4875. The Educational Testing Service can be contacted at

How to Apply


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.
  6. GRE test scores. Use GRE code 4875.
  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:

Caitlin Moloney, Program Administrator
Office Phone: (303)724-3350

Financial Aid

Students accepted in the PhD program are provided full tuition, health and dental insurance, and a stipend of $31,000 per year for living expenses (for the academic year 2019-2020). Continued support is contingent upon satisfactory academic and research performance by the student. 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 must provide:

  1. 1. Original transcripts and documentation in English (or a certified English translation) of the completion of a Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree or the equivalent as evaluated by the CU Denver Office of International Affairs;
  2. Financial and other documents as required by the International Student and Scholar Services Office to process immigration documents;
  3. A certified English translation of all academic records and references not in English, and
  4. Evidence of proficiency in English as defined in the University policy Official Measures of English Language Proficiency for Admission of International Students (effective July 1, 2012) by satisfying one of the following criteria:
    1. The applicant is a citizen of a country whose official language is English, which includes Australia, Belize, Botswana, Canada (except Quebec), Commonwealth Caribbean, Ghana, Great Britain, Ireland, Kenya, New Zealand, Scotland, Singapore, South Africa, and Zimbabwe; or
    2. The applicant obtains a composite score of 75 or above on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL, iBT) (minimum subscores of 15 in Reading, 14 in Listening, 19 in Speaking, and 20 in Writing) or a composite score of 6.5 or above on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) (minimum subscores of 5.5 in each area). Schools or Colleges, or individual graduate programs may require higher standards on these tests; or
    3. The applicant has graduated from the CU Denver’s ESL Academy; or
    4. The applicant has graduated with a bachelor’s degree or higher from a foreign institution where the language of instruction was English. (The applicant must provide a letter from the home institution verifying this information if the language of instruction is not clearly indicated on the official academic transcript.); or
    5. The applicant has graduated with a bachelor’s degree or higher from a US accredited school abroad where the language of instruction was English. (The applicant must provide a letter from the home institution verifying this information if the language of instruction is not clearly indicated on the official academic transcript.); or
    6. The applicant has earned a bachelor’s degree in the US or has successfully completed a minimum of 2 semesters (a minimum of 12 credits) of full-time study in a graduate-level master’s program at an accredited institution in the US and obtained a “B” (3.00) cumulative GPA or higher.

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