M.S. non-thesis track in Microbiology and Immunology

The intended purpose of the non-thesis track is to deepen the conceptual understanding in the fields of microbiology and immunology. Therefore, the non-thesis track consists of rigorous training in integrated theory culminating in the development of a literature-based research proposal or literature review.


A minimum of 30 credit hours is required for completion of the degree.

Required Courses

Course NumberCourse TitleCredit HoursSemester
MBIO 606Seminar/Journal Club1Fall & Spring
*MBIO 601Molecular Microbiology2Fall
*MBIO 602Immunology3Fall
MBIO 610Methods and Analysis in the Biomedical Sciences2Fall
BIOC 667Cell Biology3Spring
BIOC 668Molecular Biology 4Spring

A minimum grade of B- is required for all core courses

Scientific Electives 

Course NumberCourse TitleCredit HoursSemester
MBIO 619Research1 - 12Fall, Spring, Summer
*MBIO 601Molecular Microbiology2Fall
*MBIO 602Immunology3Fall
MBIO 604General Virology 1Spring
MBIO 621Advances Immunology: Innate and Adaptive Immunity 2Spring 
MBIO 622Immunity to Microbes and Tumors 1Fall
MBIO 687Microbial Pathogenesis2Spring
BIOC 630Research Ethics1Spring
BIOC 662Biomed Res Data Analysis1Summer
BIOC 663High-Throughput Sequencing Data Analysis3Fall
BIOC 670Biomedical Genetics and Genomics2Fall

Professional Development Electives 

Course NumberCourse TitleCredit HoursSemester
MBIO 611Learning Theories & Instructional Strategies in Science Education2Summer
MBIO 623Scientific Writing2Fall

A minimum of 3 scientific electives is required. At least 2 electives must be offered in the Department MBIO.
*If MBIO 601 is taken as a “Required Course” then MBIO 602 can be taken as an elective. Likewise, if MBIO 602 is taken as a “Required Course” then MBIO 601 can be taken as an elective.
Additional courses outside of the department can be taken as electives in consultation with the Research Advisor and Graduate Program Director.

Evaluation of Student's Progress

Students will meet with the Associate Graduate Program Director at the conclusion of the Year 1 Fall and Year 1 Spring semesters. Students are required to identify a Faculty Advisor by completion of Year 1. The Faculty Advisor will provide mentorship through completion of the Program, in particular, completion of the Master’s Final Oral Examination. Students are expected to maintain satisfactory progress in her/his coursework. Students may proceed to degree candidacy provided they have successfully maintained an overall and program GPA of 3.0 or higher (with a grade no lower than a B- in any MBIO course), Pass grades in all required courses with Pass/Fail grading, and successful completion of all required coursework.

Master's Final Oral Examination

Students are required to write either a literature-based research proposal or a literature review and orally defend it to their Master’s Final Examination Committee. The decision to write a research proposal or literature review will be made between the student and their Faculty Advisor. The Department of Microbiology and Immunology Curriculum Committee Chair will name the Master’s Final Examination Committee, which will be comprised of at least three graduate faculty members with at least two members with primary appointments in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. To satisfactorily pass the Master’s Final Exam, a majority of the committee members must approve.

For more information

How to Apply

For admission to the M.S. program, the applicant must have earned the B.S or B.A. degree, or equivalent, with a minimum grade-point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 point scale). In addition, the following should be submitted online directly to Graduate Admissions:

  • A completed application form and $60 application fee
  • Official scores of the TOEFL or IELTS (applies only to international applicants)
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • A brief statement of purpose describing interests and career goals
  • A current resume or curriculum vitae
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate course work (mailed to Graduate Admissions)
    • International applicants must provide evaluations (WES or ECE) on transcripts completed outside of the United States to be admitted
  • A letter of scientific support from a Department of Microbiology and Immunology faculty member

The application deadline is March 1st each year. Submission prior to March 1 is strongly encouraged in order to ensure that all required materials (especially letters of reference) are received by the deadline. Qualified prospective students will be invited for a visit and personal interviews.

M.S. students are not eligible for fellowships, departmental stipend support or any tuition remission. Go to the Bursar's website, to see the proposed graduate tuition rates for the upcoming year. Graduate non-resident tuition is about $24,879 annually, because of this, MS admission is usually limited to self-supporting resident students. In addition, students applying to the M.S. Program are required to find a faculty research advisor. The time required to complete the M.S. degree ranges from 2 to 3 years. To continue towards a Ph.D. after completion of the M.S. degree, you will need to apply and be admitted to the Ph.D. program.

Specific course prerequisites for all applicants include:

  • one year of biology
  • one year of organic chemistry
  • one semester (or equivalent) of introductory calculus
  • one semester of biochemistry

Apply Online Now

Please have universities mail your official transcripts to:

University of Louisville
School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies
2211 S Brook St, Houchens Bldg, Rm 105
Louisville, Kentucky 40292
United States of America
Email Address:
Phone Number: (502) 852-3101, (800) 334-8635
Fax Number: (502) 852-3111

Graduate Program Address

(transcripts are sent to Graduate Admissions, University of Louisville, NOT the address below)

Department of Microbiology & Immunology
School of Medicine
505 South Hancock, CTRB, Room 602A Louisville, KY, 40202
Graduate Program Office
Fax: (502) 852-7531