Applying for Admission (All Programs)

The following materials are required for a complete application, and are sent to the ECU Graduate School Office:

  1. Application form (on-line, or mailed as a hard copy). On-line applications can be accessed at:
  2. Official transcript from each college or university previously attended.
  3. Official GRE scores of the General Test (ECU GRE code is 5180). The Biology Test is not required.
  4. Statement of Purpose (= Statement of Intent).
  5. Three letters of recommendation from individuals in a professionally relevant field who can assess your promise as a graduate student
  6. Non-refundable application fee ($70)
  7. TOEFL or IELTS scores if you are a foreign applicant and have received your baccalaureate degree from a university outside the USA where English is not the official language

International students are requested to supply a supplemental application via email to the graduate school at   The supplement application can be downloaded at

Forms for the Statement of Purpose, and Letter of Recommendation, can be downloaded from Statement of Purpose describes the nature of your interests in biology, why you wish to pursue graduate studies at ECU, and those accomplishments and experiences you feel qualify you for consideration as potential graduate student.

In addition, a potential research mentor should also be identified based on shared research interests. Visit for descriptions of faculty research and their contact information. The Statement of Purposeis an important part of the application package because it contains information that may not necessarily be well represented by the other application materials, and allows us to determine if your professional interests can be served by our curriculum and our faculty. Selection for admission is based on the sum of the individual's qualifications, and the availability of facilities, research resources, and financial support.

Any materials mailed to the Graduate School should be sent to:

The Graduate School
131 Ragsdale
East Carolina University
Greenville, NC 27858

Admission Requirements (All Programs)

  1. Requirements for admission include a baccalaureate degree in Biology or a related field from an accredited college or university within the country, or the equivalent from a foreign university. Those applying for admission to the MS in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology must have had coursework or appropriate training in genetics, microbiology, and basic molecular technology.
  2. GRE scores no more than 5 years old; Average GRE scores for admitted MS students are 155 (67th Percentile--Verbal), and 154 (60th Percentile—Quantitative).  Average GRE scores for admitted PhD (IDPBS) students are Verbal 157 (77th Percentile), and Quantitative 156 (72nd Percentile).
  3. GPA of at least 2.75 (on a 4.0 scale) for Master's Programs, or 3.0 for doctoral programs. The average GPA of students accepted in the Biology graduate programs is 3.3 (MS) and 3.5 (Ph D).
  4. Minimum TOEFL scores are 100 (no less than 20 per section) for the IBT exam, 550 for the paper-based exam, or 213 for the computer-based exam.  The minimum IELTS score is 6.5if you are a foreign applicant.

Application Deadlines

MS Programs:

Domestic Students
Fall Semester: April 30**
Spring Semester:  October 15
International Students
Fall Semester:  March 15

** Admissions decisions begin in January, and continue until all positions are filled or April 30, which ever comes first. Prospective students should apply by March 15 to maximize their chances for receiving an out of state tuition remission (if applicable) and/or a Teaching Assistantship.

Ph D Programs: Domestic and International students are admitted only for the Fall semester)

IDPBS: April 1
CRM: January 15

Visit the IDPBS website ( for in-depth information about this program. Decisions concerning financial support awards for PhD programs are limited to fall admissions, and applications for fall are reviewed beginning January.  It is therefore to your advantage to apply early.

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