Frequently asked questions
General questions about the Department and application process are listed first. Questions pertaining specifically to international applications are listed at the end of this document.
The Application Process
- Do I need to contact the professors whose research interests match mine? Please feel free to contact professors in whose research you are interested if you would like additional information about their research. However, in the Biochemistry Department, all applicants are admitted to the Department rather than to individual labs. Therefore, your application should be submitted to the Graduate School indicating your interest in the Biochemistry Department. If you are accepted into our Graduate Program, you will identify three faculty members for research rotations during your first year prior to choosing one for your Ph.D. research.
- Should I send my application documents to the Department and/or to the Graduate School? All documents should be sent only to the Graduate School. Approved documents will then be forwarded automatically to the Biochemistry Department.
- What is the application deadline? The deadline for all application materials to be received by the Graduate School is January 5.
- Is there an interview prior to the final admission? Invited domestic applicants will attend a Graduate Recruitment Weekend, usually scheduled for the first weekend of February. International applicants will be interviewed by phone or Skype by the Graduate Admissions Committee.
- When will I know if I have been accepted into the Department? The Graduate Recruitment Committee will send acceptance notices in late February to early March.
- How many applications does the Department receive each year? The number varies from year to year, but on average we receive 120 applications.
- How many graduate students to you expect to accept for the fall? Usually 10-15 students.
- Am I eligible for financial support? All Ph.D. candidates are provided with a graduate research assistantship from departmental sources for a maximum of twelve months of study. Laboratory rotations and the majority of the course work should be completed while students are supported by departmental sources. After departmental support ends, students will be supported by research grants, fellowships or other sources available to their Ph.D. mentors.
- Am I eligible to receive a tuition waiver? All graduate students in our department have their tuition paid for them as part of their graduate research assistantship.
Requirements for Applicants
- Do I need to send official transcripts, or can I send copies for review? Our Department and The Graduate School of the University of Missouri require official transcripts before your application will be reviewed.
- Do I need to send official GRE & TOEFL scores, or can I send copies for review? Our Department and The Graduate School of the University of Missouri require official copies of the GRE and TOEFL scores before your application will be reviewed.
- What is the minimum requirement for GRE scores? The full application package is considered when evaluating each applicant. Although GRE scores are one metric, the admissions committee also takes into account GPAs, research experience, and letters of reference. Therefore, the department has no fixed minimum GRE score. However, most successful students in our Department have verbal and quantitative GRE scores averaging above 60%.
- Can my recommenders send the letters by e-mail? Yes, letters can be submitted via an online form at the Graduate School or sent to the following email address: email@example.com. The authenticity and quality of letters of recommendations are highly important.
- Does your program prefer a master's degree? A M.S. degree will be considered as a positive factor when your application is reviewed by the Graduate Recruitment Committee. However, an M.S. degree is not expected or required.
- If I applied to your program last year, is my application still on file? No. All application documents are only valid for 3 school terms. Therefore, if you are re-applying to our program for any reason, you must submit a new, full application to the Graduate School.
- What is the minimum requirement for TOEFL scores? Students whose first language is other than English must take and score at least 620 on the written exam or 95 on the computer version of the TOEFL examination.
- Will you accept the IELTS instead of TOEFL? No, we only accept TOEFL.
- Where do I send my application documents? All documents are sent to The Graduate School. If you cannot submit your documents electronically, please use the following address for hard copies:
Graduate School Admission Office
University of Missouri
210 Jesse Hall
Columbia, MO 65211
Also, please note the following information from the Graduate School regarding sending transcripts and other information:
Official transcripts or mark sheets
Official transcripts or mark sheets, must be sent directly from each university or college you have attended. (Note that certain international institutions issue transcripts in officially-sealed envelopes only to their students; if this is the case, MU accepts those sealed official documents when mailed to MU by the applicant.) Transcripts/mark sheets for all baccalaureate degrees or equivalents and any additional degrees must be sent in both English and the native language. At this time, the Graduate School only accepts hard copies of transcripts. All transcripts/mark sheets become the property of MU.