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Department of Biology

Master of Science in Biology

The research-intensive Master of Science in Biology degree program at Fresno State offers students the opportunity to excel in academics while establishing a productive record of their own scholarly research. The Biology Department is renowned on campus for the quality and impact of its programs, and we are proud to help train new generations of scientists who are capable of transforming their communities through teaching and research. Obtaining a Masters of Science in Biology prepares students to succeed in careers in education (teaching at the secondary and community college levels) and in industry and to pursue further study to obtain a Ph.D. or other professional degree.

The graduate curriculum reflects the diversity represented by the interests of faculty in the Department of Biology. This diversity enables Masters students to customize their program of study while ensuring that they receive exposure to a range of topics. Graduate courses communicate discipline-specific knowledge and also hone universal scientific skills, such as knowledge of modern techniques in the disciplines, critical thinking skills, and scientific literacy, writing, and presentation.

Graduate students in the Master's program select a thesis adviser primarily based on common interests.  The thesis, however, represents the unique research interests of each student as guided by the research adviser and thesis committee.

Students completing the M.S. degree are prepared to a diverse array of career opportunities in the biological sciences including continuation to a Ph.D. degree.  Training in the biological sciences provides opportunities in a range of employment sectors including government, industry, and education. Specific employment areas may include laboratory management, quality control, environmental management and conservation, the biotechnology industry, health care research, ecology, agricultural production and inspection, pest control, and marine sciences among others.

We are accepting applications for Spring 2022 admission. The deadline is November 1, 2021.

Apply Now


Prospective Graduate Students

The graduate program of the Department of Biology will provide state-of-the-art educational experiences that will prepare students to make valuable contributions to society where a knowledge and understanding of biological organisms and processes are required (e.g., biodiversity, conservation and the environment, health sciences, and biotechnology). Students will learn laboratory and/or field techniques and will conduct independent research within the biological sciences. They will also acquire the skills necessary for communicating biological information to professional scientific peers as well as to the lay public.

  • to enhance the student’s depth of understanding of selected topics in the biological sciences.
  • to cultivate skills for acquiring knowledge in the life sciences, both for matriculation and life-long learning.
  • to increase the student’s understanding of experimentation, observation and data analysis, and their application to defined questions in biology.
  • to develop an awareness of available tools and fiscal limitations of conducting specific scientific endeavors.
  • to enhance communication skills, both written and oral, for purposes of conveying biological information to both professional scientists and the lay public.

The Master of Science in Biology curriculum reflects the diversity represented by the interests of faculty in the Department of Biology. This diversity enables Masters students to customize their program of study while ensuring that they receive exposure to a range of topics. Graduate courses communicate discipline-specific knowledge and also hone universal scientific skills, such as knowledge of modern techniques in the disciplines, critical thinking skills, and scientific literacy, writing, and presentation.

Our graduate students typically receive financial support for their studies in a number of ways, including:

  • Teaching Assistantships (TAs) - contact the Chair of the Biology Department
  • Research Assistantships (RAs) - contact individual faculty members
  • Awards and Scholarships
  • Research awards supported at the level of the College, University, and CSU System
  • Financial Aid
  • Division of Research & Graduate Studies

To be admitted into the Biology Department Master of Science program, students must first be admitted as a post-baccalaureate student at California State University, Fresno. Key requirements include:

  1. Baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution
  2. GPA greater than 2.5 (applicant needs to arrange official transcripts to be sent to the following address or email)Attn: Graduate Admissions
    5150 N. Maple Ave M/S JA57
    Fresno, CA 93740
    Electronic transcripts: imaging@csufresno.edu
  3. A commitment from a prospective faculty research mentor in the Biology Department. This is very important. You need to establish whether there is an advisor who you would like to work with and who is willing to take you on.
  4. TWO letters of support (ideally from academic references). Prospective students shall arrange two letters of recommendation to be directly submitted to the Graduate Coordinator, Dr. Hwan Youn, by email: hyoun@csufresno.edu.
  5. Personal statement (250+ words) of why you want to pursue the MS Biology at Fresno State. The statement will be sent to Dr. Hwan Youn via email.
  6. General GRE scores are required for (i) domestic applicants with a GPA of <3.0 and (ii) all international applicants. Applicants must have official GRE scores sent directly to the Office of Graduate Admissions (see address above).

Applicants meeting all the Departmental admissions criteria may be admitted as classified students. Should an applicant fail to meet some of these admission requirements, that applicant may still be admitted as a conditionally classified student. Visit the Division of Research & Graduate Studies website for more information on "Conditional" or "Classified" standing.

Visit the California State University, Fresno Division of Research & Graduate Studies website and the California State University, Fresno Catalog website for more admissions information.


Current Graduate Students

Current Students

Current Students

Learn about what you should expect from the program as a graduate student.

Students
Example

Student Handbook

This student handbook is designed to assist graduate students in the program.

Handbook

Graduate Research

Our graduate students have unique research opportunities.

Research

Contact

Hwan Youn

Dr. Hwan Youn (Graduate Coordinator)

Office: Science 1 #314B

Phone: 559.278.8305

Email: hyoun@csufresno.edu