The Microbiology Program provides graduate training leading towards M.S. and Ph.D. degrees.  The major supports a broad interest in microbiology, including environmental and pathogenic microbiology, with studies that encompass a spectrum of approaches from the ecological and organismal to the molecular, genetic, and biochemical.  Faculty from several colleges and departments participate as major advisors.  Prior research experience is highly recommended.

OSU Graduate Admissions Requirements

Prior to contacting Microbiology, please confirm (link below) that you meet all Oregon State University requirements.  Graduate Admissions Requirements for all Applicants to Oregon State University

Microbiology Requirements

If you meet Oregon State University requirements, you are encouraged to contact Microbiology Program Faculty whose research coincides with your interests.  Individual faculty members will provide information on their programs and opportunities on possible positions in their laboratories for graduate students.

Grade Point Average (GPA)
A minimum GPA of 3.00 is required; recent successful applicants had an average GPA of 3.5.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE) 
The GRE will not be used in our departmental admissions evaluation. However, because some scholarships and fellowships still use the GRE in their evaluation process, we are choosing to make submission of these scores optional.  

Research Experience
Prior research experience is an important criterion:  most successful graduate students come to our Program with previous research experience.  This is obtained through various opportunities, such as REU programs, work-study or volunteering in university research laboratories, a prior M.S. degree, or work in private industry laboratories.

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
Foreign applicants must achieve a TOEFL score of at least 600 (paper test) or 250 (computer test) or 100 (internet test). For information about the TOEFL exam, go to ETS TOEFL site. Proficiency in spoken English is important because of the requirement to serve as a Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) for one term of a MS or PhD program and to ensure ability to discuss detailed concepts when planning and interpreting your research.

Graduate Teaching and Research Assistantships (GTAs and GRAs)

Value and Cost of Graduate Education

The standard Microbiology Program stipend for the 2022/23 academic year is $26,208 (0.45 FTE; annual rate of $58,240). Students will get a 4% raise the following year. GTA and GRA appointments include 100% of tuition and most student fees. Students are responsible for the following costs: $75 miscellaneous fees per term (the remaining $671 is paid through the GTA/GRA appointment), and a percentage of the mandatory health insurance cost (see Health Insurance below). Note:  Costs may change annually.

Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTAs)
We offer GTA positions each year on a competitive basis. The GTA appointment involves teaching in laboratory classes, helping with lab prep, and grading tests.

Graduate Research Assistantships (GRAs)
Students may receive GRA support directly from the grant of their major professor. Students may enter the program with a GRA, and are typically supported by a GRA after their first year.

Laboratory Rotations
We anticipate that very few rotation positions will be available in the next few years (2020 forward). Rotation positions allow admitted students to study in different laboratories over two or three terms before choosing a thesis project and home laboratory. Because of the rarity of these positions, we strongly recommend that you contact Microbiology Program Faculty whose research aligns with your interests to determine whether they anticipate admitting new students to their laboratory in the next year.

Health Insurance

Health insurance is mandatory for all graduate students. GTA and GRA employment includes a contribution of 90% of the cost of the insurance premium and half the administrative fees. Students are responsible for $53.79 per month for Graduate Employee-Only coverage.  More information is available at Student Health Services.

Student Loans, Scholarships and Fellowships
Graduate students are often eligible for financial assistance in the form of student loans or limited university-wide scholarships. For more information contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships.  Limited scholarship opportunities for partial support in certain specialized fields exist within the Program, e.g., for thesis topics related to fish and animal health or to the dairy industry. Nationally competitive fellowships can be obtained from sources such as the National Science Foundation; these typically must be submitted with deadlines in November of the first year of graduate studies, and therefore require preparation before graduate studies actually commence (in late September). Such sources can augment or replace research grant support. 

How to Apply

Deadline:  January 1 for all applicants.  Interviews are by invitation only and are normally held in February or March.

Online Application: Review the information below before beginning the application process.  The Graduate School's application fee is paid online.   For further questions about the  Microbiology Graduate Program please contact (541-737-1833).

Required Materials: These are to be entered as prompted in the online application process:

Letters of Recommendation and Evaluation: Limit of 3 letters.  When you list your references, they are automatically sent instructions on how to submit a letter of recommendation, and an evaluation.  Be sure that the email addresses are correct.

Documents:  To be uploaded after you have completed the first part of the Online Application and have received an acknowledgement email containing instructions.

Transcripts:  Unofficial transcript(s) are to be uploaded into the provided space.  Do not send hard copy transcripts.  Official transcripts will be required if you are admitted to Oregon State University.
Resume/Curriculum Vitae:  Include your educational background, course work in progress, work experience, honors, internships, awards and prizes, and papers that you have authored or co-authored, if any.