Master of Science in Biology
To enroll in the Master of Science program, students must receive research guidance from a professor in the department and be approved by the chair of the Biology Department and the dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Research.
The thesis option is offered for students preparing for further graduate work in biology. For thesis admission, a student must select a research topic and be approved by the biology graduate faculty member who represents this discipline.
The non-thesis option is offered for students who want to improve their positions and skills as secondary school or junior college teachers, laboratory technicians, consultants, or government employees.
Typically, students who plan to pursue a doctoral degree choose the thesis option. Thesis students must complete a minimum of 30 semester credit hours of graduate work, including:
- 18-24 semester credit hours in biology graduate courses, including Biology 6301, 6302, and two hours of 6181;
- Up to 6 credit hours in supporting graduate (non-biology) electives.(Must have advisor approval. If these hours are not used for electives, they must be made up in Biology courses.);
- A thesis in biology (6 additional semester credit hours in biology are awarded upon successful completion of the thesis).
Thesis research is available in:
- Developmental Biology
- Molecular Biology
- Organismal Biology
Those interested in admission as a thesis student to the biology graduate program should first contact a biology graduate faculty member conducting research in an area of interest to the student.
A non-thesis biology graduate student (a student who either has chosen the non-thesis option or has not yet been accepted into a graduate faculty member’s research program) is required to complete 36 semester credit hours of biology graduate work, including:
- 24-30 semester credit hours in biology graduate courses, including Biology 5480 or 6301, two hours of 6181;
- Biology 6302;
- Biology 6391 - Independent Research;
- Up to 6 semester credit hours in supporting graduate (non-biology) electives. (Must have advisor approval. If these hours are not used for electives, they must be made up in Biology Courses.)
The independent research includes a thorough review of the literature on a topic acceptable to both the student and the supervising graduate faculty member.
Any non-thesis student interested in conducting additional research may seek approval from a member of the biology graduate faculty and the chair of the Biology Department. The student can then conduct additional laboratory or field-based study after the three-hour research requirement has been successfully completed.