Faculty in the Department of Botany host and advise graduate students in several graduate programs (Botany; Ecology; Molecular and Cellular Life Sciences). Below you will find information about options for pursuing a graduate degree under the direction of a faculty member in the Department of Botany. The process of application and admission to the graduate programs begins by contacting a faculty member in the student's field of interest. Admission is contingent upon a faculty member agreeing to serve as a graduate adviser to a student.
The Department of Botany offers graduate programs leading to the M.S. and the Ph.D. degrees. As part of these programs students participate in research, teaching and coursework that lay a foundation for expertise in the broad discipline of plant biology. Our faculty have strong research programs in plant biology, in which undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral students play a key role. Read more (.docx).
Details of the graduate program philosophy and degree requirements are given in the Botany Graduate Student Handbook (.pdf). This document contains important information for prospective and current students.
Specific instructions for the application procedure are below ("How to Apply").
Several faculty in the Department of Botany participate in the interdepartmental, doctoral Program in Ecology (PiE). Applicants to the Program in Ecology apply to a host department for admission. If you are a prospective student for the Program in Ecology, with a faculty adviser in Botany, please follow the instructions below ("How to Apply") and review the instructions for application to the Program in Ecology. Questions can be directed to email@example.com.
Three botany faculty members also participate in the interdepartmental Ph.D. program in Molecular and Cellular Life Sciences (MCLS). Students apply directly to the MCLS program, rather than to the Department of Botany. First year students rotate through four laboratories before choosing a mentor for their degree. Prospective students are encouraged to contact individual Botany faculty (Buerkle, Ward, and Weinig) and to review information about the program, including application procedures. Questions can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Components of the application to Botany include completion of a graduate program application form, a letter of interest, a curriculum vitae, three letters of recommendation, transcripts from all other post-secondary institutions attended, and results from the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE; Subject test is not required). International students may need to complete the TOEFL (more information).
You should initiate the online application process with Graduate Education. Official documents (transcripts, GRE results) are required for formal admission.
Each year review of applications begins February 1st.
Evidence of aptitude and likely success are required for admission. This evidence will come from various components of the application. The program requires a composite minimum score on the Verbal and Quantitative sections of the GRE for admission: 900 (M.S.), 1,000 (Ph.D.) and 1,100 (interdisciplinary Ph.D.) or from August 2011 forward 292 (M.S.), 297 (Ph.D.) and 302 (interdisciplinary Ph.D.). Similarly, a minimum GPA of 3.0 on previous coursework is required for admission (3.25 for Ph.D. in Ecology or MCLS).
Checklist for applicants:
1. Correspond with a faculty member with appropriate research interests
2. Visit Graduate Admission Process Overview
Begin Online Application and next steps
3. Letter of interest
Describe your background and interests, your prior communication with a faculty member in the department, and your plans for your degree.
4. Curriculum vitae
Describe your educational, research and relevant employment background.
5. Three letters of recommendation
Letters should be sent directly by a student's recommenders.
6. Transcripts from all post-secondary schools you have attended
Unofficial copies of transcripts are acceptable initially. If a student is admitted, official transcripts will be required.
7. Results of the GRE exam
Results from the General Test are typically required of all applicants. The Biology Subject Test is not required. Unofficial copies of results are acceptable initially.
8. Results of the TOEFL for some international students
Some international students are required to take the TOEFL (see details).
Teaching and Research Assistantships, including stipends and tuition, are available to support students admitted to the graduate programs. Individual faculty should be contacted for possible support from grant funds. Summer and scholarship support is often available as well.
Please direct inquiries about the graduate programs to a faculty member with whom you share research interests, or to the Graduate Program Officer for Botany (email Dr. Alex Buerkle).