Graduate Program Admissions

Admission Requirements

Candidates should apply for admission to the Graduate Program in Biology through application at the Graduate School at Howard University. All questions should be directed to the Director of the Department of Biology Graduate Studies: Dominique Pritchett ( To apply, click HERE. For information on procedures and forms, please click HERE. Applicants should directly contact those faculty members with whom they are interested in working with. The general deadline date for receipt of applications for the fall semester is April 15th.

Applications to the Department of Biology will be evaluated by the Admissions Subcommittee of the Graduate Studies Committee (the departmental committee with oversight of the graduate programs). Applicants should apply for admission to the Graduate Program in Biology through application to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Howard University. Students are expected to have an undergraduate background in the biological sciences or a related field. Training appropriate for admission to the Graduate Program is a minimum of two years of college level biology, including a course in genetics; two years of chemistry, including Organic Chemistry; one year of mathematics, through precalculus; and one year of physics. **Students deemed qualified but not having appropriate training may be admitted provisionally. Applicants are required to submit scores for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), although there is no minimum criterion for admission. Weaknesses or deficiencies, identified through testing during the first semester in residence, may be remedied through appropriate course work planned in consultation with a temporary adviser and the Graduate Studies Committee. The performance of each student will be evaluated annually. Note that the criteria for admission are identical for both the Ph.D. and Master's students.

Decisions on applications will be based on the following considerations:

1. The applicant's official transcripts.

2. Letters of recommendation, preferably from members of the academic community familiar with the applicant's academic performance.

3. Review of the following documents submitted with the application: current CV/Resume, a brief personal statement (1-2 pages) and an application essay (2-3 pages). 

4. Availability of graduate positions and support in the department.

5. Admission to the Ph.D. Program requires prior agreement of a Graduate Faculty member to act as the student’s advisor in the Department. Therefore, applicants are strongly advised to contact directly those faculty members with whom they are interested in working. Contact information and research interests of the Graduate Faculty are available at the departmental website

International Applicants Admission Requirements

  • In addition to the requirements listed above you must submit the following:

    • Official transcripts, final certificates and/or mark/grade sheets must be sent directly from the college or university to the Office of Graduate Recruitment and Admissions, and must show proof of degree(s) earned, courses taken and marks/grades received. Also, ALL transcripts must be evaluated by World Education Services ( or AACRAO ( and be forwarded to Graduate Recruitment and Admissions.
    • If the documents are not in English, they must be accompanied by an official translated copy.
    • All documents must bear the same name that appears on the admissions application unless an official document so submitted indicating a change of name.
    • TOEFL Scores (Minimum computer-based score of 213 is required and only official score reports are accepted within 2 years of the test date) TOEFL scores must be sent directly from ETS (HU code: 5297).
    • The TOEFL test is not required if you received a degree in the U.S.
    • Statement of Financial Resources Form – A completed form that verifies proof of financial support (sufficient funds to cover expenses for one full year - $29,132 in US Dollars only) and supporting financial documentation indicating sources of funds while attending Howard University (such as a certified bank statement dated within three months of registration).
    • Verification of six months history with your bank.


Provisional admission: In exceptional cases (good grades in science subjects, research experience attested to by publication etc.), applicants deemed qualified but who have not fulfilled all admission requirements may be admitted on a provisional basis. All provisional students will be required to remedy identified weaknesses or deficiencies through appropriate course work planned in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies, a temporary adviser and/or the Graduate Studies Committee. The performance of each student will be evaluated annually. A provisional student must earn a minimum GPA of 3.0 during the first year of full-time study. Transfer to regular status will be made by vote of the Graduate Studies Committee. The student will receive written notice of transfer to regular status.

Admissions - Graduate School of Howard University

Graduate School education has been an important part of Howard University’s mission since its founding in 1867—the same year the University offered its first master’s degree. The Graduate School was formally established in 1934 and awarded its first doctorate degree in 1958 in the field of chemistry. Today, Howard University ranks No. 80 in the U.S. News & World Report 2020 list of the nation’s best universities. The Graduate School offers master’s and Ph.D. programs in more than 30 disciplines and 100 specializations. It is also the nation’s largest producer of on-campus African-American doctoral recipients, producing 100 or more doctoral degree recipients annually.

Admissions - Graduate School