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Applications and Admissions

How do I apply to the Graduate Program in Biomedical Sciences?

You can apply on-line: APPLY ONLINE

Can I apply online?

Yes, applicants can apply on-line

What are the minimum GRE and TOEFL scores necessary for admission?

Minimum combined GRE verbal and quantitative score of 1,000 or 295 in the 130-170 new score scales. Competitive applicants will have verbal and quantitative scores above 40th and 50th percentile, respectively. GRE Advanced Subject Test is suggested, but not required.

If I do poorly on my GREs, should I retake them?

The GREs are one of the major criteria that we use, but it is not the only one. In general, if your GREs are not competitive you should consider retaking.

When is the latest time I can take the GREs to help with my application?

We have a rolling admissions process which begins approximately in December and peaks in February. Thus, it is most helpful to have your GRE scores by February.

What is the minimum GPA needed for admission?

All PhD applicants must have a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0.

The only research experience I have had in college are my lab courses. Is that enough?

A certain proportion of our incoming class has not had laboratory experience outside of coursework. Such students are admitted on the strength of their academic record, letters of reference and test scores. Nevertheless, additional research/lab experience beyond coursework more clearly establishes a track record of commitment and ability for biomedical research and thus does help strengthen one's application considerably.

Who should I get reference letters from?

The best letters of reference are those that come from established scientists with personal knowledge of your laboratory experience, such as research mentors at your own institution or elsewhere. Letters from faculty who have taught you in laboratory courses or in advanced biology courses are also very helpful.

Do I need to select a faculty advisor during the application/admissions process?


If I know that I want to enter, for instance, the Biochemistry program, should I just apply directly to that graduate program?

For the PhD degree, all applications made directly to an individual program are forwarded to the Biomedical Sciences Admissions Committee since that committee serves as the admissions committee for all the PhD programs. PhD students can, if they wish, communicate their interest to individual programs giving those programs an opportunity to bring that interest to the attention of the Biomedical Science's Admissions Committee. Note again, that all first year students, no matter what their program of interest, take the same multi-departmental core curriculum.

For the Masters of Science degree, each program has its own admissions committee, so you should apply directly to that program (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Cell and Developmental Biology, or Physiology).

Can I visit the Upstate campus to learn more about the Graduate Program?

Students who have been accepted or are being seriously considered for acceptance into the Upstate Graduate Program are invited to visit the Upstate campus at our expense on one of our recruitment days between January and April. These visits include tours of our research facilities, presentations by each department and one-on-one meetings with research faculty. These days are designed to give students an opportunity to learn more about our program and meet some of our current students and faculty.

I've been accepted and am having trouble making a decision. Can I come back for a second visit?

Yes, you are encouraged to visit again to collect as much information as needed to be comfortable with your decision. Such additional visits are at your own expense. Please get in touch with your faculty contact on the Graduate Recruitment Committee or contact the Office of Graduate Studies (biosci@upstate.edu; 315-464-7655) to make the arrangements.

I've applied but haven't heard back. When and who should I call or email?

Inquires regarding the status of your application should be made to the College of Graduate Studies (biosci@upstate.edu). Please, however, realize that the Admissions Committee does need a certain amount of time to reach its decisions. Furthermore, you will be notified quickly whenever a decision is reached, or if the Committee is missing an important document to complete your application.

Message from the Dean

Mark E. Schmitt, PhD
College of Graduate Studies,

SUNY Upstate Medical University has a strong base of scientific researchers and a relevant clinical setting which provides students with an excellent environment to learn and grow. More>

Graduate Studies
Recruitment Video
Grad Studies recruitment Video
Summer Research Fellowsh ips
Upstate Visiting Lecture Series