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Masters Checklist 

Note: The following guidelines that concern BIOL 7990 (Research and Thesis), BIOL 7950 (Master's Seminar), do not apply to MST-NT students.


  • Make up any course deficiencies during your 1st year.
  • Form your advisory committee (your major professor and at least 2 additional faculty members) and prepare your Plan of Study by the middle of your 2nd semester (e.g., by 15 October for students entering Spring semester).
  • Fulfill residency requirement (1 semester of course work; 9 hours minimum enrollment).
  • Prepare the "Annual Review" summary each year.
  • Prepare your Research Proposal by the end of your 2nd semester.
  • Conduct original research and prepare the thesis
  • Present the final seminar to the department (BIOL 7950)
  • Pass the final comprehensive oral exam.

All graduate students holding a Graduate Research Assistantship (GRA) (link) or a Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GTA) (link) must register for at least 1 credit hour for every semester in attendance, consisting of graded and/or S/U (satisfactory/unsatisfactory) courses. In addition to, or in lieu of, graded courses, in a given semester MST students may register for BIOL 7990 (Thesis Research). The number of credit hours of BIOL 7990 per semester should reflect the amount of time students spend on their thesis research (i.e., 1-10 hours per semester).

NOTE: Students who have finished all course work and are in the final stages of completing the thesis may take GRAD 7900 (Thesis Completion) for a maximum of 3 semesters if they qualify. GRAD 7900 carries no credit and students must register for 1 hour of BIOL 7990 concurrent with registration GRAD 7900. Students will be classified as "full-time".

Time Limit: All graduate work must be completed within 5 calendar years for the MST/MST-NT and 10 calendar years (or a maximum of 5 calendar years after advancement to candidacy) for the Ph.D.

Course Deficiencies 

Required courses for Biological Sciences Graduate Students

The following courses are required of all graduate students to have been completed as undergraduates. There are no exceptions. If any of these are deficiencies they must be made up in the first year of residence, earning at least a "C" grade in each course.

  • Genetics (BIOL 3000) or equivalent course
  • Organic Chemistry (CHEM 2030 or 2070)
  • Physics ( 1500)
  • Calculus (MATH 1610)

Last Updated: 06/30/2016