Program in Population Biology, Ecology and Evolution Division of Biological and Biomedical Sciences Emory University

Program in Population Biology, Ecology and Evolution Division of Biological and Biomedical Sciences Emory University

Atlanta, GA
student ratio
total students
Tuition Cost Not Reported
Not Reported
average amount to complete degree
December 1
fall application deadline
acceptance rate
1 Degree Offered
degrees offered


A Top Graduate Program in Population Biology, Ecology and Evolution

The Graduate Division of Biological and Biomedical Sciences (GDBBS) at Emory University offers a Ph.D. program in Population Biology, Ecology, and Evolution (PBEE). The "Chronicle of Higher Education" ranks Emory University as number 1 in the nation for scholarly productivity in the fields of evolutionary biology and ecology.

The interdisciplinary PBEE program pulls faculty members from Emory College of Arts and Sciences (Departments of Anthropology, Biology, Chemistry, and Environmental Studies), the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, the Emory Rollins School of Public Health (Departments of Bioinformatics and Biostatistics, Global Health), the Emory University School of Medicine (Department of Human Genetics and Medicine), the Emory National Vaccine Center, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Faculty members and students investigate a broad range of issues in population biology, ecology, and evolution, all by using quantitative methods and models.

The program provides graduate students with competitive financial support.

Training and Expertise in Population Biology, Ecology, and Evolution

The field of population biology crosses many levels of organization, from molecular to complex ecological systems, and as a result, PBEE research must employ a multidisciplinary approach to understanding the organization, dynamics, and evolution of natural populations. Hence, graduate students take courses not only in core subjects, such as ecology, molecular evolution, biostatical models, and applied linear models, but also in a host of electives that connect to their areas of expertise.

Graduate students conduct research in one of six areas of inquiry: bioinformatics and biostatistics; the biology of species interactions; disease ecology; ecological and evolutionary modeling; genetics of complex traits; and population and comparative genomics.

Outstanding Faculty and Research Opportunities

The program's faculty members are at the forefront of research in population biology, ecology, and evolution. Biologist Jaap de Roode has been named one of the "Brilliant 10" top scientists under 40 by the editors of Popular Science magazine, and Bruce Levin has been named to the National Academy of Sciences.

Doctoral Program Coursework and Research

Doctoral students in PBEE typically take between five and six years to complete their degrees. Students complete three laboratory rotations during their first year to help them identify thesis advisors and research topics. All students are also required to take a two-day teacher training course after their first year, and are required to gain teaching experience.

Students begin dissertation research and take written qualifying exams for the doctoral program in PBEE during their second year. After completing their dissertation research, students defend their theses both orally and in writing.

Excellent Research Centers and Facilities

Graduate students in the microbiology and molecular genetics program have the unique training opportunities through the Yerkes National Primate Research Center and the Emory Vaccine Center. Emory is unique in giving students the option to do dissertation work at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Competitive Financial Support

Students in the Graduate Division of Biological and Biomedical Sciences at Emory receive tuition scholarships, health insurance, and stipends. They enjoy the low cost of living in suburban Atlanta, Georgia.

The stipend for the 2017-18 academic year was $30,000. In addition, several competitive fellowships are offered to outstanding applicants each year. These fellowships provide students with supplements to their stipends that range from $2,500 to $5,000 per year for five years, depending on the award.

Living in Atlanta

Emory University is located in a beautiful, wooded area of northeast Atlanta, Georgia, just four miles from downtown. The area serves as a hub of medical research, encompassing both the CDC and the American Cancer Society.

Midtown Atlanta is home to museums, galleries, and cultural activities that students enjoy. Atlanta's temperate climate affords students many opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, rafting, and camping.

Location & Contact

Program in Population Biology, Ecology and Evolution

Division of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Emory University

201 Dowman Drive
Atlanta, GA 30322-1100
United States

Dr. Michael Zwick


Phone: 404-727-9924
Fax: 404-727-3949

Ms. Kathy Smith

Director of Recruitment and Admissions

Phone: 404-727-2547
Fax: 404-727-3322

Request More Info

Degrees & Awards

  • Degrees Offered
    • Major Degree Levels Offered
    • Ecology Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
  • Degrees Awarded
    • Master's Degrees 3
    • Doctoral Degrees 2
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported
    • * Shows the number of degrees awarded for the last academic year that data was reported.
  • Earning Your Degree
    • Part-time study available? No
    • Evening/weekend programs available? No
    • Distance learning programs available? No
    • Terminal master's degree available? Yes
  • Degree Requirements
    • Master's Degrees Not reported
    • Doctoral Degrees Comp Exam Required and Thesis Required
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported


24% of applicants are admitted.
  • Acceptance Rate
    • Applied 61
    • Accepted 15
    • Acceptance Rate 24
    • Enrolled 5
  • Applying
    • Application Fee - Domestic $75
    • Application Fee - International $75
    • Electronic applications accepted? Yes
    • Applications processed on a rolling basis? Not Reported
  • Application Deadlines
    • Type Domestic International Priority Date
    • Fall deadline December 1st December 1st Not Reported
    • Winter deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
    • Spring deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
  • Entrance Requirements
    • Master's DegreesNot Reported
    • Doctoral's DegreesGRE General Test, minimum GPA of 3.0 in science course work (recommended)
    • First-Professional's DegreesNot Reported
    • Other Advanced DegreesNot Reported
    • International DegreesTOEFL required

Tuition & Fees

  • Tuition & Fees *
    • Tuition & FeesNot Reported
    • *Average dollar amount (tuition & fees) required to complete the degree
  • Financial Support
    • Financial award applicants must submitNot Reported
    • Application deadlines for financial awardsNot Reported
    • Types of financial support availableFellowships, Tuition Waivers, Health Care Benefits, Institutionally-sponsored Loans, Scholarship and/or loans

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students33
    • Female Percentage64%
    • Male Percentage36%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students33
    • Part-time Percentage0%
    • Full-time Percentage100%
  • Race/Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / Latino9%
    • Black / African American3%
    • White / Caucasian55%
    • American Indian / Alaskan Native0%
    • Asian3%
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander0%
    • Two or more races9%
    • Unknown or International Student21%


  • Faculty Breakdown
    • Total Faculty40
    • Full-time Percentage100%
    • Part-time Percentage0%
    • Female Percentage10%
    • Male Percentage90%


  • Existing Research
    • Focus of faculty researchEvolution of microbes, infectious disease, the immune system, genetic disease in humans, evolution of behavior
    • Externally sponsored research expenditures last yearNot Reported



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