Degree Requirements

Master of Arts

The graduate program is focused on the doctoral degree; this degree is designed for those who anticipate careers in research, possibly combined with teaching or other activities. Students seeking only the master’s degree are rarely admitted. If a master’s degree student is admitted, their proposed program must be approved by the Graduate Studies Committee. The Master of Arts degree consists of 30 hours of coursework, including Biology 698 or 398R. The coursework must include a minor of six hours of coursework acceptable for graduate credit in another area of study.

Doctor of Philosophy

For the Doctor of Philosophy, preliminary training should have provided a working core of knowledge in general biology and the history of biology; other helpful areas are plant biology, vertebrate and invertebrate zoology, genetics, ecology, evolution, animal behavior, and physiology. Statistics and computational skills are also valuable.

Students must take a two-semester core course in their first year in the program. Students take an additional three lecture courses. At least two of these must be taught by ecology, evolution, and behavior faculty. At least one must satisfy a requirement for quantitative skills. Students must also take Biology 384L, Issues in Population Biology , and a minimum of three additional courses that may include seminars or reading courses.