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Microbiology (PHD) 
Program Description

The Microbiology Graduate Program provides postgraduate education in the basic science disciplines, including microbiology, immunology, and food safety, embracing an integrative approach to science.  Students will develop a broad academic foundation with a concentration in at least one science discipline.  The ACBS faculty members constitute the core Micro faculty, however there are faculty members in other UA departments who have academic credentials and interests appropriate to the Micro Graduate Program that also participate as Micro faculty.  Admission to the program is linked to a commitment by a Micro faculty member to mentor the student and assure adequate support for the student to successfully complete his/her degree.  Therefore Micro students have the advantage of a designated graduate advisor from the outset.  Limited numbers of Graduate Assistantships are available through the School of Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences and the Soil Water and Environmental Sciences and Plant Sciences Departments to supplement support for Micro students.

Department/Academic Unit(s)

School of Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences -

The School of Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences (ACBS) brings together animal scientists, veterinarians, microbiologists and others to offer the strongest possible programs in research, education and outreach. This school was formed in order to offer more integrated research and educational opportunities in the animal and biomedical sciences.

College of Agriculture & Life Sciences  
Campus where offered
Main Campus - Tucson  
Admissions Contact
Kaitlin Dariel Trujillo
Graduate Program Coordinator
Kaitlin Dariel Trujillo
Director of Graduate Studies
Virinchipuram Viswanathan
Graduate College Degree Counselor
Christina M Inocencio
Tuition and Fees
Please refer to the UA Bursar's Office Tuition and Fees Calculator for up-to-date information about tuition and fees. 
Please refer to the UA Registrar's's Office Special Course Fees for up-to-date information about special course fees. 

Admissions Information

Admissions Requirements

General requirements include: 3 letters of recommendation, curriculum vitae, statement of purpose, GRE score, and unofficial transcripts of all colleges and universities attended are to be submitted electronically through the online application.

Once an applicant has been recommended by the program committee, the applicant will be notified by telephone or email. At that time official transcripts will need to be sent to the following address: Microbiology Graduate Program Director, School of Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences, University of Arizona, P.O. Box 210090, Room 201 Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences Building, 1117 E. Lowell St, Tucson, AZ 85721.

Standardized Tests

Required test(s): GRE
Minimum GRE Verbal: 151
Minimum GRE Quantitative: 153
Minumum GRE Written: 4.0
Minimum TOEFL: 550
Minimum IELTS: 7

Financial Aid

Limited numbers of Graduate Assistantships (GTA) and Graduate Research Assistantships (GRA) are available through the School of Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences. The GTA positions are provided on a semester-by-semester basis and generally require the recipient to assist in teaching laboratory courses in the core curriculum of the undergraduate microbiology major. The GRA positions are generally supported by research grants acquired by the major professor and are provided during semesters when the student does not have formal teaching assistant duties. Since faculty support is required, applicants are accepted only upon commitment of a MGP faculty member to provide supplemental financial to assure successful completion of the graduate degree. MGP students may also apply for a wide range of graduate student scholarships and fellowships offered by the University of Arizona.

Admissions Deadlines

Domestic Applicants:

  • Fall: January 1

International Applicants:

  • Fall: January 1
International Conditional Admission
International applicants will not be considered for conditional admission by this program.
Other Information
The GRE Institution Code for The University of Arizona is 4832
NRC Taxon(a) for this program: Microbiology

Completion Requirements

Degree Requirements

Minumum credits: 63
Core coursework: The Micro program provides maximum flexibility in planning programs of study for MS and PhD candidates, and no uniform core of coursework is required. The student's Plan of Study is developed and approved by the student's Graduate Advisory Committee in accordance with the student's research interests and career goals. The PhD degree is conferred upon individuals who have demonstrated proficiency in research, experimental design, and scientific achievement in a micro discipline. The degree is not granted merely as a certificate of faithful performance of a prescribed program of studies and research.
Language requirements: English proficiency is one of the conditions for admission for all applicants whose native language is not English. Applicants must submit a minimum TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score of 550 paper based (PB), 79 internet based (iBT), or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) composite score of 7 (no subject area below a 6).

Applicants may request, the Educational Testing Service (ETS) to send an official TOEFL score report directly to The University of Arizona. Contact TOEFL Services to request the mailing of your score report. The University of Arizona institution code is 4832.
Other requirements: Students entering the program with a strong foundation of coursework in microbiology, pathology, epidemiology, parasitology, and/or other health science disciplines will have greater flexibility in preparing a plan of study within the program. An acceptable thesis and a final oral examination are also required. The candidate should generate sufficient data from the thesis research to write at least two full-length manuscript (not a note, brief communication, or review suitable for publication in a refereed journal in the field of specialization. This manuscript must be submitted for consideration prior to the final examination, unless this is waived by agreement of the student's mentor and Graduate Advisory Committee.

Minor Requirements

Selection of at least one minor is required. It may be in another graduate program, or in the MGP. Minor coursework should present a unifying theme to the remainder of the student's program. Dissertation work in absentia must be recommended by the GAC and ACBS Director and approved by petition to the Graduate College.

A Minor in the MGP will consist of nine hours of graded coursework with one member of the graduate student’s committee being part of the MGP. Students considering a Minor in MGP should first schedule a meeting with the MGP director. 

Student Handbook  

Program StatisticsInformation about these numbers

Program-level Information
Application Acceptance Rate 21%
Med. Time-to-degree (years) 4.50
Department-level Information
Enrollment Percent Male 21%
Enrollment Percent Female 79%
Enrollment Percent International 16%
Enrollment Percent URM 32%

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Last revised 10 Jul 2017