Graduate Program Application information

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Requirements for Admission

Application Process

Key Deadlines

Financial Considerations

Requirements for Admission

Thank you for considering one of our graduate programs in Biology.  For admission to either the M.S. or Ph.D. programs of study, the following requirements must be met.

1. The applicant must have a baccalaureate degree with a major in biology, or an acceptable undergraduate degree with coursework as described in the graduate regimen (PDF).
2. The applicant must meet the admission standards of the Department of Biology. Generally, these are:
A. An undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better
B. Submission of GRE scores.  While there is no minimum requirement for GRE scores, competitive students usually have an average score around the fiftieth percentile or better.  Composite MCAT or DAT scores are acceptable alternatives to the GRE.
C. For foreign students from non-English speaking countries one of the following is required: 1)  a TOEFL Examination score of 550 or better on the paper-based exam; or 2) 235 or better on the computer-based test;  or 3) at least 83 on the TOEFL iBT (Internet Based Test); or 4) a score of 6.5 or greater on the IELTS exam.  Students holding a baccalaureate or advanced degree from an accredited institution in the United States are exempt from this requirement.
3. All applicants should review the research specialties of the departmental faculty to ensure that an area compatible with the student’s research interest is available.  All Ph.D. and M.S. thesis students must have a faculty member agree to serve as a graduate advisor in order to be admitted to the program.  M.S. non-thesis students can be admitted without an advisor, but must find an advisor by the end of their first semester in the program.

Special Requirements for Accelerated Master's Degree Program Admission:

1. Requirements above and:
2. An undergraduate GPA of 3.35 or better.
3.  Completion of Biology 240/242/244, 329, 330/331, and 363 with grades of B or better.

Requirements for Accelerated Master of Arts in Teaching:

1. 21 credit hours in biology;
2. An overall and Biology GPA of 3.0 or better;
3. Combined score of at least 1000 on the verbal and quantitative portions of the GRE.

Students interested in the MAT program should contact Dr. Alexander (Email: to have their qualifications verified and to find out more information about this program.  Students who meet the above qualifications will need to complete a teacher education application packet and meet other requirements for admission to the College of Education and Human Development before they can register for the MAT courses.

Submitting an Application

Prospective graduate students in the Department of Biology must submit two applications (Biology Department application and Graduate application) to enter the program, as well as other supporting documents. The Departmental application  should be submitted before January 15 to receive full consideration for financial support for the fall term. Prospective students in the MAT program will apply through the College of Education and Human Development in their junior year and will be given instructions on how to do so after their qualifications have been verified.

Students interested in the research of a particular faculty member should correspond directly with that individual.   Faculty who offer applicants  study opportunities in their laboratories will sponsor them for admission.


Components of an application:

A.  Fill out two on-line applications and pay application fee:

1. Complete Biology Department Application Form.;
2. Complete Graduate School Application form and pay the fee.

B. The following items should be sent to the Graduate Admissions Office, 105 Houchens Building, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40292:

3. Official transcript(s) of all previous undergraduate and graduate work;
4. Graduate Record Examination Scores (General Test Section), MCAT or DAT scores;
5. Two or more letters of recommendation from persons familiar with your academic performance;  and
6. for foreign students, results of the TOEFL Examination.


Key Deadlines

The deadlines for completed applications are as follows:

Conventional M.S. and Ph.D. applications

  • July 15 for Fall admission [As noted above, prospective PhD students seeking financial support for the Fall term should apply by Jan. 15 for full consideration.]
  • December 1 for Spring admission
  • April 15 for Summer admission

If these dates fall on a weekend, the deadline is the next working day.


Accelerated M.S. Program

  • Application is usually made in the junior year, and must be done before the end of the junior year or completion of 90 credit hours toward the degree.

Official notification of admission or denial will come from the Graduate School and will be based on a recommendation from the Department of Biology. Notification of acceptance to the Department of Biology Graduate program does not carry with it the promise of financial support. However, all students admitted to the program will be considered for financial support, if they qualify.


Accelerated MAT Program

  • Application is usually made in the Junior year.
  • Application deadlines follow the current MAT program (March 1, June 1, and October 1).

To be accepted in this program the applicant must be approved by both the Biology Department and the Secondary MAT Screening Committee.



Financial considerations
Financial Support:
Qualified applicants to the Biology Department's graduate programs may be eligible for highly competitive University fellowships, teaching assistantships, or minority student assistantships and fellowships.  All of these provide salary, tuition remission, and health insurance.   Research assistantships are available through grants and contracts held by individual faculty members.

  • Graduate Teaching Assistantships. Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTA) are awarded by the Graduate Committee of the Department of Biology to meet instructional needs of the Department and enhance the educational progress of the student.  All applicants initially selected for GTA support by the Department will be notified by letter by June 1.
  • University Graduate Fellowships. Ph.D. applicants with exceptional credentials may be nominated by the Department of Biology for a University Fellowship. University Fellowships are awarded from a pool of candidates submitted by all Departments in the University that grant Ph.D. degrees.
  • Minority Student Assistantships/Scholarships. The Graduate School is committed to providing financial support for the recruitment and retention of qualified, under-represented ethnic minority students. An award candidate must be currently enrolled in, or have been admitted to, the degree program (M.S. or Ph.D.) and be nominated by the Department Chair and Dean.
  • Graduate Research Assistantships. Another source of financial support may be available from individual faculty members who have extramural or intramural funding that provides support for a graduate student as a Graduate Research Assistant. The faculty member holding a grant selects eligible graduate students to fill GRA positions.

Cost of Study:
Tuition Rates:
Tuition information is available through the Registrar's web site or by calling the Registrar's office (502-852-7325).

Living and Housing: On-campus housing is available for both married and single graduate students,  as well as nearby off-campus housing.  Information about housing opportunities and costs can be found through the Student Affairs web site or by calling the Admissions office (502-852-6525).

Accreditation: The University of Louisville is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC.)  For more information see .


Dr. Perri Eason, Director of Graduate Studies
Department of Biology
University of Louisville
Louisville, KY 40292
Telephone: 502-852-6771
Fax: 502-852-0725
Email Dr. Eason

Answers to general questions about graduate school at the University of Louisville may  be found at the office of the Graduate School (502-852-6495).