UMass Boston

Biology MS

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Advance your scientific journey and elevate your biology expertise.

UMass Boston's Biology master's program is designed to accommodate students with various backgrounds in science who want to pursue rigorous training leading to the MS degree. It offers research and study in a wide variety of areas. Faculty have expertise in the following areas: cell biology, microbiology, molecular biology, neurobiology, physiology, plant sciences, population biology, and evolutionary biology.

In this program, you will:

  • Develop specialized knowledge in advanced biological topics, including molecular biology, cell biology, genetics, physiology, and ecology, gaining a deep understanding of the intricacies that underpin life's diverse processes.
  • Acquire advanced research skills, including experimental design, data analysis, and specialized laboratory techniques, enabling you to conduct original research and contribute to the ever-evolving body of biological knowledge.
  • Cultivate critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication skills, preparing you to analyze complex biological phenomena, effectively communicate scientific findings, and collaborate with multidisciplinary teams in the scientific community.

Career Possibilities

Work in academic institutions, research laboratories, or biotechnology companies, conducting cutting-edge research. Contribute to medical research and healthcare by investigating disease mechanisms and developing therapeutic interventions. Or, discover how environmental impacts inform conservation and sustainable practices. These are just a few of the possibilities.

Become a(n):

  • Research Scientist
  • Biomedical Scientist
  • Environmental Scientist
  • Pharmaceutical Researcher
  • Conservation Biologist

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Plan Your Education

How to Apply

Applicants must meet general graduate admission requirements in addition to the following program-specific requirements:

  • General Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are required
  • An applicant is expected to have a grade point average of 3.0 in all undergraduate science and mathematics courses
  • The stated interests of a prospective student must coincide to an acceptable degree with faculty specialties represented in the program

Deadlines & Cost

Deadlines: January 1 (priority deadline for funding consideration) and April 1 (final) for fall; October 1 (priority deadline) or November 1 (final deadline) for spring.

Application Fee: The nonrefundable application fee is $75. UMass Boston alumni and current students that plan to complete degree requirements prior to graduate enrollment can submit the application without paying the application fee.

Program Cost Information: Bursar's website


Course Requirements

Required Course (3 Credits)

  • BIOL 650 - Scientific Communication 3 Credit(s)

Research Course (6 to 10 Credits)

  • BIOL 698 - Projects in Biology 1-6 Credit(s)
  • BIOL 699 - Thesis Research 1-10 Credit(s)

Electives (17 to 21 Credits)

Complete 17 to 21 credits of graduate courses chosen in consultation with the academic advisory committee.

Graduation Criteria

Complete 30 credits from at least eight courses including one required course, one research course, and 17 to 21 credits of electives.

Capstone: Completion of a master’s thesis or library research project. Passage of a general oral examination after submission of the thesis or research project.

Statute of limitations: Six years.


Graduate Program Director Linda Huang
Linda.Huang [at]
(617) 287-6674

Alexa MacPherson
Alexa.MacPherson [at]
(617) 287-6603

2 students work in lab in university hall.


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