Dec 06, 2019  
2018-2019 Graduate Catalogue 
    
2018-2019 Graduate Catalogue Archived Catalogue

Biology - M.S.


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Graduate Coordinator: Dr. Stephen Kinsey

The Department of Biology and Marine Biology offers programs of study leading to a Master of Science degree in biology and a Master of Science degree in marine biology. The programs are designed (1) to prepare students for further graduate work leading to the Ph.D.; (2) to provide professional biologists with advanced research and education opportunities; (3) to prepare students as managers of coastal and marine resources, trained to deal with contemporary problems in the environment; or (4) to provide a broad–based graduate program allowing for specialization in the diverse fields of inquiry represented by the faculty of the department. Teachers in secondary schools who wish to obtain graduate level teacher certification should check with the graduate coordinator in the College of Education to determine the current requirements for certification.

Admission Requirements


Applicants seeking admission to the graduate program in biology or marine biology are required to submit the following to the Graduate School:

  1. An application for graduate admission
  2. Official transcripts of all college work (undergraduate and graduate)
  3. Official scores on the Graduate Record Examination (verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing)
  4. Three recommendations by individuals in professionally relevant fields
  5. Resume
  6. Scores on the verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing, on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) in the 50th percentile or above are desired. A bachelors degree in a field of biology from a regionally accredited college or university in this country or its equivalent in a foreign institution based on a four–year program is required for admission, as well as an average of “B” or better in the undergraduate major. Undergraduate grades, GRE scores, work and research experience, and recommendations are used in concert to determine acceptability.
  7. Research Areas & Assistantship/ Statement of Interest Form uploaded directly into application
  8. Should make initial contact with the faculty with whom you wish to work
  9. Application and supplemental documents must be submitted by the published deadline

Degree Requirements (30 credit hours)


  1. The program requires 30 credit hours of graduate study.
  2. Six semester hours of credit may be transferred from another regionally accredited institution. Grades earned on transfer work must be equivalent to “B” or better.
  3. A minimum of 24 semester hours of graduate study must be completed in residence.
  4. No more than nine hours of graduate level courses offered by other science departments at UNCW may be applied toward the degree.
  5. Undergraduate courses taken to make up deficiencies will not count toward the 30 hours required.
  6. All deficiencies must be remedied prior to graduation.
  7. The student must successfully complete a comprehensive examination based on prior coursework and an oral defense of the thesis.
  8. Each student will present a thesis, based on original research, acceptable to the thesis advisory committee, prior to graduation.
  9. Each student must complete an approved course of study within five years of the date of the first registration for graduate study.

Requirements for Master of Science Degrees


Core courses


Required of all students seeking a Master of Science degree in biology or marine biology.

Master of Science in Biology


In addition to the core courses listed above, each student, in consultation with his/her thesis advisory committee, shall devise a program of study that meets the requirements below, complements the thesis research, and satisfies individual needs and interests. Select two of the following:

Elective Credit


All elective credit (minimum of 14 credit hours) to be selected from any 500 biology course , BIO 601 , BIO 602 , BIO 603 , BIO 604 , BIO 605  and BIO 694 . Graduate courses from other disciplines may also be selected, with approval of the student’s thesis committee.  

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