Jul 15, 2024  
2018-2019 Graduate Catalog 
2018-2019 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Concurrent B.S./M.S. in Biology

The concurrent B.A./M.S. or B.S./M.S. option for degree programs in Biology provides exceptional undergraduates with the opportunity to obtain both a Bachelor degree and a Master of Science in 5 years, a shorter time than typically required to earn these degrees if both are pursued separately. The B.A./M.S or B.S./M.S. option is available to undergraduates pursuing a B.A. or B.S. degree in Biology, Microbiology, or Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology. The M.S. degree awarded is in Biology. The goal of the program is to produce biologists with in-depth understanding of a sub-area of biology and extensive laboratory and/or field research experience. The curriculum will include both course work and research experience. Completion of the program will provide students with an advantage both in pursuing work in the private sector and in pursuing a further advanced degree.

Admission Requirements

To enter this program a student must be nominated by a Biology graduate faculty member who also will serve as the student’s major professor. The nomination can take place any time from the second semester of the sophomore year through the second semester of the junior year when he/she has accumulated 45-90 credit hours toward the Bachelor degree. By the time of nomination, students must have completed at least one course from each of the following two blocks: Block 1 – [BIOL 201, BIOL 455], Block 2 – [BIOL 450, BIOL 520, BIOL 529], his/her math requirement, and at least two semesters of chemistry. A student may be nominated during the senior year with special permission from the chair of the Biology Graduate Affairs Committee. After nomination, the application process is the same as for the traditional M.S. degree with the following exceptions:


  • Completion of a bachelor degree is not required prior to acceptance into the program.
  • The GRE score requirement will be waived.
  • The application must include a recommendation from a member of the Division of Biology faculty, who will serve as the student’s major professor and who agrees to support the student as a graduate research assistant during the 5th year.
  • Minimum standards for regular admission in the program require a cumulative GPA of 3.5 and a GPA of 3.5 in required math and science courses.


Should the student meet these requirements and the standards of the Graduate Affairs Committee, admission will be provisional, pending the award of the Bachelor degree. The Bachelor degree may be awarded any time following the completion of the undergraduate requirements. Alternatively, the Bachelor and M.S. degrees may be awarded concurrently. The student will work closely with the major professor to form a supervisory committee and submit a program of study by the end of the second semester of the junior year. The undergraduate advisor will continue to advise the student in academic progress toward the B.A. or B.S. degree, and the major professor will supervise the student’s academic progress and research project for the M.S. degree. Research toward the M.S. thesis will begin as soon as possible, but typically will begin during the junior year.