Program Information

Graduate students in the MS and PhD programs in biology will pursue research projects consistent with our faculty’s research interests. See the faculty directory for links to faculty research pages.

The Doctoral Degree (PhD)

The doctoral degree is granted in recognition of (1) scholarly proficiency and (2) distinctive achievement in a specific field of an academic discipline. The first component is demonstrated by successful completion of advanced coursework (of both a didactic and an unstructured nature) and by adequate performance on the comprehensive examination. The second component consists of performing independent original research and writing a dissertation on the results of that research.

The Master of Science Degree (MS)

The Biology Department offers two options:
  • Plan I requires the completion, in good academic standing, of at least 24 semester hours of appropriate graduate work and 6 semester hours of thesis research, with the presentation of an acceptable thesis embodying the results of original research work.
  • Plan II requires a minimum of 30 semester hours of appropriate course work. The Plan II Master’s degree may not require research and does not require a formal thesis; however, students are often expected to gain insight into the techniques of problem posing and problem solving and to use these insights to prepare a written report.

To apply, please visit the UAB Graduate School.

Students may enter at the beginning of any semester, with deadlines of March 1 for summer and fall applicants and October 15 for spring applicants.


  • Stipend: $32,000 per year plus tuition and fees
  • National and international students are eligible
  • Awarded competitively based on applicants’ potential for research and scholarship
  • Application deadline for these special fellowships is February 1, 2015

Contact the Department of Biology for more information.