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Department of Biology Graduate Program

The application for Fall 2020 admission is closed.

Applications for Fall 2021 will open on September 1, 2020. Applications received on or before November 16, 2020 will receive priority consideration.  Applications are accepted through December 1, 2020.  To ensure that your application is thoroughly considered, submit by the priority deadline!

GRE scores are no longer considered in our application review process.
You will not see a place for them on the application and you do not need to send in a score report.

If you are interested in applying to the Bioinformatics & Genomics Master’s Program, do not use the information below. Instead, go here: BGMP Application

To Apply

How many applications are there?

In the Department of Biology, the program application is incorporated into the general University of Oregon application. You only need to complete one application to apply to the UO Biology Program and UO Graduate School.

What is the application fee?

The application requires payment of a $70 or $90 (international) using Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or personal check (e-check). This fee is non-refundable, so if you believe you might be eligible for a fee waiver, it is very important to follow the fee waiver request instructions before you pay the fee.

Is there a fee waiver?

Some applicants are eligible for an application fee waiver through the UO Graduate School. If you are eligible for a fee waiver, you will need to answer questions at the START of the application, so please review the fee waiver information before you begin. The Department of Biology does not administer the fee waiver* and cannot answer questions about the process or the status of a request, so please direct questions about the application fee waiver to the UO Graduate School.

*For Need-Based International Applicants – The Graduate School offers a limited number of fee waivers for international applicants with significant financial need. Applicants must be nominated by their prospective program (in this case Biology) for this fee waiver.  If you wish to be considered please email your interest to the Graduate Program Manager no later than November 1, 2020.

Where do I Start?

Please read ALL instructions on this page before starting your application.

Don’t be shy about asking questions.  We are happy to provide advice and guidance!  Email inquiries to the Graduate Program Manager.

Complete the following steps:

1. Take the TOEFL (non-native speakers only)

International students must have their TOEFL scores sent directly to the University of Oregon. The Department of Biology requires a minimum score of 610 for the paper-based test or 105 for the Internet-based (iBT) version. The TOEFL code for the University of Oregon is 4846. No department code is needed.

We will also accept the IELTS in lieu of the TOEFL. The minimum score required is 7.5

2. Assess your interest in our faculty

To aid the Admissions Committee in identifying your research interests, you will be asked to select and prioritize up to five faculty members whose research is of particular interest to you. Review the faculty research at the following institute websites:

Institute of Ecology and Evolution

Institute of Molecular Biology

Institute of Neuroscience

Oregon Institute of Marine Biology

3. Assemble transcript information.

For the online application you will need to upload clear, easy-to-read PDF copies of your transcripts.  Only those transcripts from institutions where you have earned or will earn your Bachelor’s Degree, as well transcripts from any post-bac and/or graduate coursework are required.

Please be prepared to account for the following areas accurately:

  • Grade point averages
    Compute your current overall undergraduate grade point average (GPA) including all coursework leading to a Bachelor’s Degree (e.g. include transfer coursework if relevant).Compute your overall GPA in mathematics and science courses (excluding the social sciences).University of Oregon guidelines (GPA Computation Guidelines)
  • Math and science courses Be prepared to list science and math courses that you are currently taking, including course numbers and titles.

You do not need to submit official transcripts unless you are selected for an interview (PhD applicants) or offered admission (MS applicants).

4. Prepare your personal statement and description of research experience.

In approximately one page, explain why you are applying to graduate school, what you would like to accomplish while in a graduate program, and describe your professional goals. If you have research experience, you can also submit a one-page description of your project(s). Note that these two items (the statement and the research description) must be uploaded as separate files.

5. Fill out the online application completely

Please make sure that all files you upload are easy to read (blurry or incomplete scans will not be reviewed). PDFs are preferred.

6. Letters of recommendation

You will need to supply contact information for a minimum of three and maximum of four recommenders.

You can fill out and advance the recommendation page in the application before completing and submitting the full application. We recommend this, as it will allow your recommenders to get started on the letters earlier, thereby increasing the likelihood that your application will be complete when the committee begins the review process. Fill in the required information for at least three referees.

By pressing the “Next” button at the bottom of the recommenders’ page, an automated email will be sent to each person on your list with instructions for how to submit a letter. Once you’ve entered contact information and emails have been sent, you will not be able to modify any contact information for these recommenders. You may return and add a fourth, if desired; however, you may not change any contact information once an email has been sent. If you need to make changes, contact the Biology Graduate Program Manager.

Start early and request your recommendation letters NOW!

 Online Application

All application materials become the property of the 
University of Oregon and will not be returned.


Ready to Submit

Applications received by the ‘priority’ deadline of November 16, 2020, will be reviewed initially by the committee and receive robust consideration.

Applications received by the final deadline of December 1, 2020 will be reviewed on a space available basis.

The applicant is responsible for ensuring all documents required to complete the application are submitted correctly by the December 1 deadline.

To make sure you receive full consideration, fill out the recommendation section of the application as soon as possible (as instructed in step #6 above) so that the letters will be on the way while you complete the rest of the application.

International applicants: Do NOT submit financial documentation unless you are selected for an interview. Please apply and then wait to be contacted before submitting financial documents.

After you have submitted your application, notify the Graduate Program Manager of any updates you may have.

Admission Decisions

Applicants selected for an interview or accepted into the Department of Biology graduate program will be notified by phone and/or email. All other applicants will be notified via email.

For information about the Department of Biology Graduate Program or the application process, please contact:

Jen Strong
Graduate Program Manager

Phone: (541) 346-4503


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