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Biology (M.S.)

The curriculum for the Master of Science program is developed around one's interests such as: botany, ecology, immunology, infectious diseases, marine biology, microbiology, physiology, reproductive biology, systematic biology, and zoology. In addition, there are two specially designed concentration areas in “Medical Microbiology & Immunology” and “One Health”.

Biology (M.S.)


What is Biology at ODU like?

The curriculum for the Master of Science program is developed around one's interests such as: botany, ecology, immunology, infectious diseases, marine biology, microbiology, physiology, reproductive biology, systematic biology, and zoology. In addition, there are two specially designed concentration areas in “Medical Microbiology & Immunology” and “One Health”.

Program Highlights

What makes Biology at ODU unique?

  • We have the Kaplan Orchid Conservatory and excellent opportunities for research and instruction off-campus at field research sites including: Blackwater Ecological Preserve, Virginia Coast Reserve-Long Term Ecological Research Site Virginia Institute of Marine Sciences Eastern Shore Marine Laboratory DNA sequencing capabilities Confocal Microscopy Other regional agencies and facilities


What are some careers in this field?

Check out these ideas from ODU Career Development Services and the Occupational Information Network (O*NET). A median salary is the midpoint of what people typically earn—half of those surveyed earned above the median salary, and half earned below.

Biological Science Teachers, Postsecondary



Teach courses in biological sciences. Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.




Research or study basic principles of plant and animal life, such as origin, relationship, development, anatomy, and functions.

Medical Scientists, Except Epidemiologists



Conduct research dealing with the understanding of human diseases and the improvement of human health. Engage in clinical investigation, research and development, or other related activities. Includes physicians, dentists, public health specialists, pharmacologists, and medical pathologists who primarily conduct research.

Biological Scientists, All Other



All biological scientists not listed separately.


What are some courses offered in Biology at ODU?

BIOL 523:
Cellular and Molecular Biology

The molecular organization of eukaryotic cells is presented along with cell evolution, molecular genetics, the internal organization of the cell and the behavior of cells in multicellular organisms. Prerequisites: course background in cell biology and genetics or permission of the instructor.

BIOL 747:
Responsible Conduct of Research

Required of all graduate students admitted to Biology programs. The course will introduce students to the responsible conduct of science and scientific research.

BIOL 620:

A first course, or a refresher course, in statistical methods and experimental design for graduate students in biology and the natural sciences. The focus is on application and hypothesis testing with examples drawn from the field of biology. The course requires a significant amount of work outside the classroom on homework exercises and an independent project. Prerequisites: A Statistics course.


What are the requirements to apply for Biology at ODU?

Students entering the Master of Science program in Biology should meet the minimum university admission requirements (Graduate Admission)

Students must first declare the biology teacher preparation track as their major with the appropriate advisor. All students must apply for and be admitted into the approved biology teacher preparation program. Students must meet the required criteria for admission by passing the Virginia Board of Education prescribed assessments and earn the minimum required grade point averages (GPA).

  • A bachelor's degree in biology or a related field from an accredited college or university

  • Transcripts for all college-level courses

  • Two letters of recommendation; letters should be on official letterhead and must be signed. References e-mail should be a professional e-mail address.

  • An essay describing the area of biology of interest for graduate study, professional goals and motivation for graduate study in biology.

  • Written acknowledgment from a Department of Biological Sciences faculty member agreeing to serve as the student's major advisor, if the student is accepted. The applicant does not submit anything to ODU Admissions Office about the advisor---the Faculty member will notify the Graduate Program Director of their willingness to be your advisor

  • Application form and application fee. Submission of application materials Submit all materials to the Office of Admissions (applicants from USA schools) or the Office of International Admissions

For admission to the Biology program


A grade point average of at least 3.00 on a 4.00 scale.


Tuition and Fees

Estimated rates for the 2022-23 academic year. Rates are subject to change. Anyone that is not a current Virginia resident will be charged non-resident rates. That includes international students.

Virginia Resident

Per Credit:

$ 571


Per Credit:

$ 1,394

Technology Delivered Courses Outside Virginia and/or the United States

Per Credit:

$ 595

Ways to Save

Here are a few ways for you to save on the cost of attending ODU. For more information visit University Student Financial aid

Graduate Teaching Assistantships

Graduate Teaching Assistantships are awarded on an annual basis and includes a stipend; and when possible, tuition may be part of the award.

Graduate Research Assistantships

Graduate Research Assistantships may be provided by individual faculty from their grants and contracts.



The  Virginia S. Bagley Endowed Scholarship is made possible by Mrs. Bagley's estate and is awarded to a graduate student in the Department of Biological Sciences.

The  Harold G. Marshall and Vivian J. Marshall Scholarship in Biology is awarded to a full-time graduate student who demonstrates scholarship and/or service in the area of Biological Science with a specific concentration in ecological areas.


Tuition Support

Tuition Support is awarded each semester and in the summer session with deadlines announced in advance. Awards are made based on student performance and need and may cover only a portion or all tuition costs.

Next Steps

I like this program. What are the next steps?


Need help applying?

Meet Your Enrollment Team

Our enrollment coordinators are ready to help you through the admissions process.

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Piotr Kraj





Graduate Admissions


1000 Rollins Hall, Norfolk, VA 23529

Phone Office:






International Admissions


2101 Dragas Hall, Norfolk, VA 23529

Phone Office:






Additional Programs

Are there other programs at ODU I may be interested in?

With over 120 undergraduate programs, 130 graduate programs at the master'seducation specialist and doctoral levels plus a wealth of certificate and professional development programs, Old Dominion University has the program for you. Visit our academic program listing page to see other programs ODU has to offer.

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