The microbiology program provides graduate training leading towards Ph.D. and M.S. degrees. This program supports broad interests in microbiology, including environmental and pathogenic microbiology, with studies that encompass a spectrum of approaches from the ecological and organismal to the molecular genetic and biochemical. Faculty from several colleges and departments participate as major advisors.

Students can enter the Microbiology program in two ways:

  • Supported by a Graduate Research Assistantship (GRA) funded by the major professor, typically through a grant. Such an arrangement is the result of discussions between applicant and professor, and depends on grant funding.
  • Supported for the first 3 terms by a Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GTA), which requires working part-time as a teaching assistant in undergraduate microbiology lab courses. This option allows a student to explore different labs/projects/advisors before making a decision for their thesis work. Students conduct 'rotations' by spending a term in different research labs; M.S. students should choose their thesis project no later than by the end of their second term, Ph.D. students by the end of their third term. It is typical for grant funds to subsequently support students on GRA appointments.

We train about 30 graduate students earning M.S. and Ph.D. degrees. Microbiology faculty also train graduate students enrolled in related programs such as Molecular & Cellular Biology, Genetics, Soil Science, Fisheries & Wildlife, and Oceanography. Graduate students are major contributors to the research output of the department.

This program is not accepting applications for the M.A. degree. 

Admissions Requirements

Admit Term
  • Summer Term
  • Fall Term
  • Winter Term
  • Spring Term
Required Tests
  • GRE

English Language Requirements ?
  • TOEFL iBT: 100
  • TOEFL Paper: 600
  • IELTS: 0

Additional Requirements

Application requirements, including required documents, letters, and forms, vary by program and may not be completely represented here. The processing of your application will not be completed until these requirements have been met. Please, before applying to this program, always contact the program office to confirm application requirements.

See contact information above.

Application Process

Please review the graduate school application process and Apply Online.

Dates & Deadlines ?

Admissions Deadline for fall term
January 01
Admissions Deadline for winter, spring or summer term

30 days before term classes begin

Funding Deadline for optimal consideration
January 01

Available Concentrations ?

  • biotechnical microbiology
  • environmental microbiology
  • food microbiology
  • genomics
  • immunology
  • microbial ecology
  • microbial evolution
  • microbial genetics and molecular biology
  • pathogenic microbiology
  • virology

MAIS Participation

This program is not offered as a MAIS field of study.


AMP Participation ?

This program does not participate in the Accelerated Master's Platform (AMP)