a student looking through a microscopeThere are three graduate degree programs in the Department of Biological Sciences:

  • Master of science degree in biological sciences (M.S.)
  • Master of science degree in marine science (M.S.)
  • Doctor of philosophy degree in biological sciences (Ph.D.)

The primary objective of both the M.S. and Ph.D. programs is to train scientists and scholars to perceive fundamental biological problems and to investigate them successfully. Master and pre-doctoral students undertake a diversified program of study that includes course work, seminars and laboratory research. Up to 12 credit hours of graduate course work taken at other institutions and meeting Graduate School requirements may be transferred.

With the guidance of their research advisory committee, all entering students plan a first-year academic program that includes lecture courses and seminars that are tailor-fit to the research interests of the individual student.  Additionally, all first-year graduate students enroll in BSC 695 “Intro to Graduate Studies” where discussions center on laboratory conduct and procedures, scientific writing, ethics in science and career opportunities.

The Research Advisory Committee

During their first year of study all graduate students (M.S. and Ph.D.) establish an advisory committee that will oversee and guide the student through the requirements toward degree and provide oversight to the student’s research progress. The make-up of the committee differs between M.S. and PhD, but in general consists of the faculty research advisor and up to 4 additional faculty both internal and and external to the Department of Biological Sciences. Each student will meet annually with the advisory committee to establish and review goals and determine whether satisfactory progress in both research and coursework is being made.

More Information

Detailed information regarding course requirements and milestones of the degree programs can be reviewed in the Graduate Student Handbook  and through the University of Alabama’s Graduate Catalog.