May 28, 2018  
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog 
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Biology, M.S.

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Specialization Areas

Areas of study include Botany, Microbiology, Genetics and Molecular Biology, Physiology, Conservation Biology, Systematics, Wildlife Management, and Zoology.

Program Admission

In addition to the university requirements for admission to the Graduate School, applicants for regular admission to the Master of Science in Biology degree program will meet one of the following criteria:

  1. A minimum score of 900 on the GRE General Test (Verbal plus Quantitative); or
  2. A minimum of 2400 points, determined by multiplying the total undergraduate grade-point average by the combined GRE General Test score (Verbal plus Quantitative).

Applicants who fail to meet the above standard may be admitted on conditional status as recommended by the Biology Committee on Graduate Studies to the department head in concert with the Dean of the Graduate School

Sponsor/Major Advisor

Once the application materials have been received by the Graduate Coordinator in the Department of Biology, potential students will be contacted to determine if they have a sponsor/major advisor. This person is a full member of the Graduate Faculty that serves as the student’s advisor for their graduate career. Potential graduate students may request assistance in finding a sponsor/major advisor from the Department’s Graduate Coordinator, but it is ultimately the student’s responsibility to secure a sponsor. A student WILL NOT be admitted without a sponsor/faculty advisor.

Non-Thesis Option

Upon recommendation of the Biology Committee on Graduate Studies, applicants may enroll in a non-thesis option in the Master of Science Biology degree program. Students admitted to the Biology M.S. Non-Thesis option are generally not considered to be eligible for assistantships.

Program Requirements

Undergraduate requirements include a B.S. or B.A. in a biological sciences discipline or a bachelor’s degree with sufficient science background. Selected undergraduate biology classes may be identified as deficiencies by the student’s graduate advisory committee.

A candidate for the Master of Science degree pursuing the thesis option must complete a minimum of 33 semester hours of biology and related courses, including six semester hours of BIOL 5099 .  

A candidate for the Master of Science pursuing the non-thesis option must complete a minimum of 33 semester hours of biology and related courses. Non-thesis candidates must enroll in Research Methods (BIOL 5005  & BIOL 5006 ) twice during their degree program—once with an organismal focus and once with a cell/molecular focus. Only one 4000-level course may be taken each semester and no more than six credit hours of coursework from outside the Biology curriculum will be accepted toward the non-thesis degree. BIOL 5099  credit hours are not applicable to the degree plan of non-thesis candidates.

A graduate student may only transfer nine semester hours from the M.S. Thesis option to the M.S. Non-Thesis option.

NOTE:  The following is required of ALL Biology graduate students (both Thesis and Non-Thesis)

  1. At least half of the total course work in the major area and one-half the total course work must be composed of 5000-level courses; and
  2. No more than three credit hours of BIOL 5091  or MNSC 5091  can count toward the degree; and
  3. Successful completion of two hours of BIOL 5007  (Seminar); and
  4. Successful completion of two Biology courses at the 5000-level (minimum of six hours) beyond the required courses – not including BIOL 5091  or MNSC 5091 ; and
  5. Successful completion of written comprehensive exams.



Graduate Courses

Note: To receive graduate credit for a 4000-level course designated ‘For Undergraduate and Graduates,’ a student must be in graduate admission status at the time credit is earned in the course. Credit earned in undergraduate admission status cannot be changed to graduate credit.

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