FAQ

What is the start date for the Fall 2014 term?

The Fall 2014 term for the program begins on Wednesday, August 27th.

When are applicants usually notified of admissions decisions?

Applicants are usually notified of acceptance in the February or March.

How many applications do you receive per year, and out of those, how many do you usually accept into the program?

The amount of applications received by the program varies from year to year, and the rate of acceptance depends on several different factors, including available space and the amount of funding available for graduate students. Typically, we have accepted 3-5 students per year into the Biology Ph.D. program.

What is the average timeframe for completion of the program?

Our students usually take an average of approximately five (5) years to complete all program requirements, although the time will vary depending primarily on the progress of a student’s research.

Does the Department of Biology offer a Master's degree?

At this time, the only graduate degree offered in the Department of Biology is the Ph.D. For information on other programs and departments that offer Master's degrees, please refer to the main website for the Georgetown University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

Are there any specific undergraduate degree requirements or pre-requisite classes?

We expect students to have taken either a broad distribution of courses for a Biology major, or a narrower range of courses that might be from more specialized majors in Neuroscience, Molecular Biology, or Ecology & Evolution. However, if a student has not taken such courses, he/she will have the opportunity to take similar courses in their first two years. 

What types of students are typically accepted into the program? Are applicants coming straight from undergraduate work, or do they have previous work experience and/or Master's degrees?

Students have a variety of levels of experience: many with Master’s degrees, and others with undergraduate experience only.

What are the average GRE and TOEFL scores of students accepted into the program?

On average, the Admissions Committee looks for GRE scores of 600/151 Quantitative and 500/153 Verbal, and a score of 100 or better on the TOEFL (for international students). However, each application is reviewed and considered on an individual case-by-case basis, and these average scores can vary.

Do you accept the IBT (internet based TOEFL) test in lieu of the TOEFL?

Yes, the IBT test is the TOEFL.  This is a required component of the application for all international students whose native language is not English. Additional information on foreign language requirements for Georgetown University can be found on the Application Requirements Checklist page of the website for the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

What is the ETS code for sending GRE scores?

The ETS code for sending GRE scores to Georgetown University is 5244.

What if I do not believe my GRE and/or TOEFL scores will be sent to Georgetown University before the application deadline?

Please be advised that while score reports may be received after the application deadline, the test(s) must have been taken before this date, which is December 1st.

What if I did not take my GRE General Test recently? Can I still submit these scores as part of my application?

GRE test scores are valid up to five (5) years after the date on which the test was taken. If your scores are more than five (5) years old, the test will need to be re-taken.

Is it possible to submit scores from another test (i.e. MCAT) in lieu of the GRE General Test?

Yes, MCAT scores can be submitted as a substitute to GRE scores.

What is the minimum GPA required?

The Biology Ph.D. program requires all applicants to have a minimum GPA of 3.0.

Although I submitted my application by the required deadline date, the system is still showing my application as being “incomplete.” Will my application still be considered?

It is important for you to ensure that you submit your application by the required deadline date. However, sometimes supporting documents to your application (i.e. transcripts, letters of recommendation, etc.) that are sent from third-party sources separately may arrive to the Graduate School Office of Admissions at different times, or may arrive as a hard copy rather than electronically. As the Graduate School Office of Admissions receives a very high volume of applications (often all at once), it may take up to two (2) weeks after the submission deadline date for them to process all application credentials and input them into the system. If, after these two weeks have passed, you notice that your application is still reading as “incomplete,” please contact the Graduate School Office of Admissions directly, and they will do their best to assist you in resolving the situation.

Please be advised that all inquiries directly related to the receipt and processing of application materials must be directed to the Graduate School Office of Admissions, as the Biology office does not directly accept or process any of these documents.

Is it possible to complete the program as a part-time student?

Generally, the Ph.D. program is one that is full-time only. However, it may be possible under unusual or extenuating circumstances to consider exceptions.