Department of Biology College of Arts and Sciences Georgia State University

Department of Biology College of Arts and Sciences Georgia State University

Atlanta, GA
student ratio
total students
Not Reported
average amount to complete degree
June 1
fall application deadline
acceptance rate
12 Degrees Offered
degrees offered


Georgia State University was listed by "The Scientist" magazine as one of the top 12 best places in Life Sciences to work in the U.S. in 2011

Interdisciplinary Training Program

The objective of the PhD program is to produce graduates with the expertise and critical skills necessary to pursue successful careers in science. As their doctoral program progresses, students gain valuable experience in experimental design, data analysis, presentation, and project development. Over 100 doctoral level students are engaged in research in the laboratories housed in the recently completed state-of-the-art Petit Science Center as well as the newly customized Natural Science Center on the university campus. The program provides a flexible curriculum to tailor course work and research training to fit the career goals of individual students. Departmental faculty members are dedicated to graduate student success and support a student-centered mentoring approach to guide students through their programs. Academic and recreational activities of graduate students are organized by the member-elected Biology Graduate Student Organization (BGSA), and supported by the department, college and university. Students successfully finishing the program go on to first-class postdoctoral studies in academia, medical schools, private research institutes, the military, industry, the CDC, or the NIH, and many students ultimately move to coveted faculty or staff positions at universities, or to industrial or research positions across the country.

In selecting their advisers, students can choose from over 40 faculty members whose research programs cover a broad range of interests. These areas of research are organized into 4 general research areas: (i) molecular genetics and biochemistry, (ii) cellular and molecular biology and physiology, (iii) applied and environmental microbiology, and (iv) neurobiology and behavior. The biology department receives over $6 million annually in sponsored research funding from the NIH, the NSF, the American Cancer Society, and other funding agencies. As the university approaches its centennial in 2013, the biology department is experiencing significant expansion with new faculty member hires and infrastructure being added to accommodate the expanding research programs and educational missions.

Cross-disciplinary studies and collaboration with faculty members and students in other departments are encouraged and facilitated by the university-sponsored "Molecular Basis of Disease" and "Brains and Behavior" Areas of Focus. Many faculty members in the chemistry department, computer science department, and Neuroscience Institute have joint faculty appointments in the Department of Biology and several PhD students in the biological science programs carry out research projects with these faculty members.

The M.S. program in Biology at Georgia State University is designed to prepare students for multiple career paths. The M.S. program requires students to complete at least 40 hours of approved coursework and offers 6 areas of emphasis:

- Applied & Environmental Microbiology

- Bioinformatics

- Biotechnology

- Cell & Molecular Biology & Physiology

- Molecular Genetics & Biochemistry

- Neurobiology & Behavior

A student may choose to apply under a specific area of emphasis; however, a concentration is not required. Students are part-time or full-time. There are two tracks: 1. thesis & 2. non-thesis. The thesis option is laboratory, research-based training; upon completion of their M.S. degrees, several students enter Ph.D programs or research related employment opportunities. The non-thesis track is curriculum-based involving conceptual analysis and critical thinking while offering research experience. Typically, the non-thesis track is utilized by students seeking to enter into professional schools (medical, dental, etc.), receive an advanced degree, change careers, or learn more about scientific research.

Georgia State University's Biology graduate programs are ranked among the Top 25 Fall 2013 Graduate Programs According to Students by

Research Facilities

In addition to the specific equipment in individual laboratories, students have access to the continually expanding state-of-the-art instrumentation core facilities, such as DNA-protein core facilities for proteomics and genomics studies. Additional facilities include biomolecular computing and structural biology resources, atomic force microscopy, transmission electronic microscopy, confocal microscopy, a bioimaging facility, a fermentation facility, mass spectrometry, and NMR. The department also houses BSL3 facilities, transgenic development, high-throughput robotics, and laser dissection microscopy. The department constantly incorporates the latest technology and software into the exceptional core facilities to support students' investigations into exciting new frontiers of science.

Tuition and Stipend Support

The PhD programs in biological sciences in the Department of Biology primarily accept dedicated and motivated graduate students with experience in research and excellent academic records. Required standards in GPA, GRE scores, and TOEFL or IELTS (for international students) can be located on the departmental website ( In addition to the regular stipends and tuition waivers offered to most accepted PhD applicants, special fellowships are available to qualified students for the Molecular Basis of Disease, Brains and Behavior, and University Doctoral Fellowship Programs.

Campus Life

University housing in the University Lofts is available within walking distance to the campus. For more information on Lofts housing, please visit GSU assists newcomers to Atlanta with off-campus housing options through its off-campus living website, Whether students are interested in renting apartments, loft spaces, or rooms, GSU can assist them in finding their new homes.

Shuttle service is available to students who live on- and off-campus from designated areas. The Metro Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) provides train and bus service directly adjacent to campus. Discounted monthly passes are available.

For students looking to stay in shape or relieve stress, the state-of-the-art GSU Student Recreation Center is the place to be. The center offers over 100 programs, which include intramurals, sport clubs, aerobics, personal training, outdoor trips, swimming, and aquatic activities, to name a few. The center has something for everyone!

Atlanta: a Rich Center for Academics, Art, Culture, Music, and Living!

Within a 5-mile perimeter, Georgia State University, Georgia Tech, Emory University, Clarke-Atlanta University, and others form an ARCHE (Academic Research Centers of Higher Education) consortium rich with interdisciplinary opportunities in graduate education. Atlanta is the hub city of the southeast, home to Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, the largest, busiest airport in the US. Atlanta is also one of the most diverse US cities, with dynamic downtown venues that provide a wide variety of activities and cultural diversity, as well as exciting centers for art, cinematography, music, sports, cuisine, hiking, state parks, kayaking, shopping, and much more. Professional football, baseball, and basketball arenas are within walking distance from the campus.

Application Deadlines

The priority deadline for reviewing PhD applicants seeking an assistantship is December 1st. The department will review applications for any semester of entry. Application deadlines are as follows:

- Spring: October 1st

- Fall: June 1st

To apply online, please go to

Location & Contact

Department of Biology

College of Arts and Sciences
Georgia State University

33 Gilmer Street
Atlanta, GA 30302-3083
United States

Dr. Sidney Crow

Professor and Chair

Phone: 404-413-5300

Ritu Aneja

Director of Graduate Studies

Phone: 404-413-5300
Fax: 404-413-5301

Request More Info

Degrees & Award

  • Degrees Offered
    • Major Degree Levels Offered
    • Applied And Environmental Microbiology Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) [applied and environmental microbiology]
      Master of Science (MS) [applied and environmental microbiology]
      Master of Science (MS) [bioinformatics]
    • Cellular And Molecular Biology And Physiology Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) [cellular and molecular biology and physiology]
      Master of Science (MS) [bioinformatics]
      Master of Science (MS) [cellular and molecular biology and physiology]
    • Molecular Genetics And Biochemistry Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) [molecular genetics and biochemistry]
      Master of Science (MS) [bioinformatics]
      Master of Science (MS) [molecular genetics and biochemistry]
    • Neurobiology And Behavior Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) [neurobiology and behavior]
      Master of Science (MS) [bioinformatics]
      Master of Science (MS) [neurobiology and behavior]
  • Degrees Awarded
    • Master's Degrees 78
    • Doctoral Degrees 10
    • 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? Yes
    • Evening/weekend programs available? No
    • Distance learning programs available? No
    • Terminal master's degree available? Yes
  • Degree Requirements
    • Master's Degrees
    • Doctoral Degrees
    • First Professional Degrees Not reported
    • Other Advanced Degrees Not reported


60% of applicants are admitted.
  • Acceptance Rate
    • Applied 223
    • Accepted 135
    • Acceptance Rate 60
    • Enrolled 81
  • Applying
    • Application Fee - Domestic $50
    • Application Fee - International $50
    • Electronic applications accepted? Yes
    • Applications processed on a rolling basis? Yes
  • Application Deadlines
    • Type Domestic International Priority Date
    • Fall deadline June 1st June 1st Yes
    • Winter deadline Not Reported Not Reported Not Reported
    • Spring deadline October 1st October 1st Yes
  • Entrance Requirements
    • Master's DegreesGRE
    • Doctoral's DegreesNot Reported
    • First-Professional's DegreesNot Reported
    • Other Advanced DegreesNot Reported
    • International DegreesTOEFL (minimum score 550 paper-based; 82 iBT) or IELTS (minimum score 7)

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 awardsMarch 1
    • Types of financial support availableGraduate Assistantships

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students308
    • Female Percentage59%
    • Male Percentage41%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students308
    • Part-time Percentage15%
    • Full-time Percentage85%
  • Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / Latino7%
    • Black / African American30%
    • White / Caucasian39%
    • American Indian / Alaskan Native0%
    • Asian17%
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander0%
    • Two or more races4%
    • Unknown3%


  • Faculty Breakout
    • Total Faculty32
    • Full-time Percentage100%
    • Part-time Percentage0%
    • Female Percentage50%
    • Male Percentage50%


  • Existing Research
    • Focus of faculty researchApplied and environmental microbiology, cell biology and immunology, molecular pathogenesis, protein modeling, neurobiology and behavior
    • Externally sponsored research expenditures last yearNot Reported