Program Overview & Admission Requirements

Degree Programs

The Department of Biology in the School of Science and Technology (SST) in the College of Science, Engineering and Technology (CSET) offers graduate studies leading toward the 1) Master of Science (M.S.) in Biology, and 2) Master of Science (M.S.) in Environmental Science degrees. Both M.S. degrees are research-oriented and designed to satisfy academic requirements for those students intending eventually to seek degree(s) beyond the master’s level.

Programs Objectives

  • To provide academic and practical training of high quality at the master’s degree level.
  • To contribute to the pool of biologists and environmental scientists qualified to undertake doctoral degree programs, and to obtain employment in industry, government and academic institutions, and
  • To offer a program that will enable biology and environmental science majors to obtain the necessary classroom, laboratory and/or field experiences required for entering areas in and related to environmental science directly upon graduation.

Admissions Requirements

In addition to the requirements set forth by the Division of Graduate Studies, all applicants seeking admission to the M.S. in Biology and/or M.S. in Environmental Science programs in the Department of Biology must meet the following minimum admission requirements:

  • An undergraduate (B.S.) degree in biology or related field.  For M.S. in Environmental Science program applicants, at least 16 credit hours of biology courses are required.
  • A minimum undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 or higher as evidenced by an official transcript from all accredited colleges and universities attended,
  • Application for admission to JSU Graduate School
  • Three letters of recommendation (sent directly to the department), at least 2 from academic professors who can assess the applicant’s: a) academic qualifications; b) written and oral communication skills; c) capacity for critical and analytical thinking; and d) overall potential for graduate studies; Letters of recommendation form (
  • A Graduate Record Examination (GRE) composite (verbal plus quantitative) score of 800 is required. For applicants with score below 800, partial credit will be assigned for score of 390 in quantitative or verbal sections. The GRE score must be sent directly to the department,
  • A minimum Test of English as Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of 520; and a Certified Declaration of Financial Support filed with JSU Division of International Studies – (required for international/foreign applicants),
  • A career goal essay (maximum of 800 – 1200 words),
  • A complete application package submitted before or on the following deadlines: March 1 for Fall semester; March 15 for Summer; and October 15 for Spring semester.  (Incomplete and late applications (received after the deadlines will not be evaluated.)