Prospective Students

Thank you for your interest in graduate studies in Biology at Bowling Green State University!

Most of the information that you will need about our graduate programs and the application process can be found on our website. Below are some guidelines and helpful links. If you have specific questions, please feel free to contact the Graduate Coordinator.

General Guidelines

The Department of Biological Sciences does not and will not tell students their potential chances of being admitted or receiving assistantship funding until all credentials have been received. Admission decisions are based on multiple factors including: undergraduate major/minor, GRE and TOEFL scores, GPA in undergraduate major and overall GPA, letters of recommendation, statement of research interest, availability of faculty advisor, etc. Admission decisions are not made until all credentials have been received.


Prerequisites for the graduate program include completion of a baccalaureate degree, typically in one of the biological sciences.

Applicants to the Ph.D. program should have or complete a M.S. or M.A. prior to the start of the Ph.D. program, preferably in Biology or a related field.  Domestic applicants for the PhD who will not have a M.S. or M.A. prior to the start of the program, must contact the Graduate Coordinator before applying.  A separate application to the Ph.D. program must be made by all students completing a master's degree, even if the degree is from Bowling Green State University.

All applicants are strongly encouraged to visit the faculty websites, identify one or more faculty members in their area of interest, and contact them in order to make sure they are accepting students and would be willing to serve as an advisor BEFORE applying to the program.

Application Deadlines

Admission and funding decisions are made competitively.

Fall Applications: Applications received by February 1 will be given priority in admission and funding. Decisions about assistantships are usually finalized by June 1. Applications must be complete by June 30 for admission for Fall semester.

Spring Applications: Applications for Spring semester are discouraged because students cannot take courses in the preferred sequence and funding is not available (except in unusual circumstances). Applications must be complete by November 30 for admission for Spring semester.

Summer Applications: The Biology Department does not accept new students in the Summer semester.

Application Process

The application process is now completed primarily online.  Please be sure to:

  1. Contact potential advisors before applying.  During the online application process you will be asked to identify three faculty that you might be interested in working with for your graduate degree.
  2. Request that official copies of all undergraduate and graduate transcripts be sent to: BGSU Office of Graduate Admissions.
  3. Request that official copies of GRE scores be sent electronically from ETS using school code 1069 to: BGSU Office of Graduate Admissions.  Only test scores received within the last five years are acceptable.
  4. Complete the online application and it will include the Application for Assistantship.  Use this form (Application for Assistantship or Fellowship), only if you are not able to complete the online application and send it by email it to the Graduate Secretary.
  5. Upload your research statement, which is a written description of your motivations for attending graduate school, your specific area of interest within the Biological Sciences, and your aspirations following receipt of the graduate degree.  Make sure you identify the faculty that you would like to work with for your graduate degree.
  6. As part of the online application list three persons acquainted with your academic experiences and their contact information.  An email will be sent that requests a letter of recommendation from them that they can directly upload to the website.  If your referees prefer, they can send their recommendation letters directly to the Graduate Secretary.
  7. Fulfill the requirements for the Office of Graduate Admissions as specified on the application form and on the Graduate College website.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS: In addition to the above requirements, please:

  • Send a copy of your most recent TOEFL score electronically from ETS using school code 1069 to the Office of Admissions, BGSU. Only test scores received within the last two years are acceptable.
  • Fulfill the requirements for the Office of Admissions, as specified on the International Students website.

Online Application to the Graduate College

Applying to The Graduate College is easy and convenient with our online application. Your application will be instantly uploaded into our system. Once you click on "Submit," your application will arrive at the college -- no envelopes or stamps necessary! To directly access the online application, go HERE. You will also need to send all of the supporting documents to the Graduate College including: GRE scores, Official Transcripts, TOEFL scores (for International Students).

At the Graduate College homepage, you will find information on such topics as admissions, sponsored programs and research, and academic resources. Plus, you can access the Graduate Catalog for information on all of the master's and doctoral programs offered at BGSU. The Graduate College homepage can be accessed HERE.

Have questions? Contact the Biology Graduate Coordinator.