Bioscience and Biotechnology, PhD


Program Summary

Format: On-site, Hybrid

Locations: Potsdam

Credit Hours:


Cost: per credit hour

Our Program

The objective of the Interdisciplinary Bioscience and Biotechnology (IB&B) Ph.D. Program is to provide students with specialized knowledge in a major field of biology plus the technical skills to enable graduates to work with interdisciplinary teams of bioscientists in academic, corporate, and government research settings.  Based on current areas of faculty expertise within the IB&B Program, accepted students will have the option of specializing in one of four interdisciplinary subfields:

  1. Molecular Bioscience & Biotechnology,
  2. Biomedical Sciences & Neuroscience,
  3. Computational Biology & Bioinformatics, and
  4. Ecology, Evolution & the Environment.


Required Courses
Specific Course Requirements for the IB&B Program include:  two core courses in cell and molecular biology (BY680 & BY682), one biotechnology or molecular biology lab course (BY612 or CM570), two specialization elective courses from one of four categories (Molecular Bioscience & Biotechnology, Biomedical Science & Neuroscience, Computational Biology & Bioinformatics; Ecology, Evolution & the Environment), one free elective course from any category, one course from the Computational Biology category and one course on Bioethics, Policy, or Law. Please see Detailed Degree Requirements for more information.

Example Courses & Concentrations

Molecular Bioscience & Biotechnology

  • BY510 Developmental Biology (3 cr)
  • BY515 Recent Advances in Immunology Research (1 cr)
  • BY560 Comparative Physiology (3 cr)
  • BY562 Comparative Physiology Lab (2 cr)
  • BY586 Molecular Biotechnology (3 cr)
  • BY612 Molecular Biology Laboratory (4 cr)
  • BY650 Biochemistry I (3 cr)
  • BY651 Biochemistry II (3 cr)
  • BY652 Pharmacology (3 cr)
  • BY680 Advanced Cell Biology (3 cr)
  • BY682 Molecular Genetics (3 cr)
  • CM520 Separations and Electrochemistry (3 cr)
  • CM530 Colloid and Interfaces (3 cr)
  • CM544 Medicinal Chemistry (3 cr)
  • CM553 Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Biomaterials (3 cr)
  • CM562 Physical Chemistry for Life Sciences I (3 cr)
  • CM563 Protein Chemistry & Proteomics (3 cr)
  • CM566 Bioelectronics & Bionanotechology (3 cr)
  • CM570 Biochemistry & Biotechnology Laboratory (3 cr)
  • ES552 Biomaterials & Biomedical Engineering Applications (3 cr)
  • PH526 Introduction to Biophysics (3 cr)

Biomedical Sciences & Neuroscience

  • BY519 Immunobiology (3 cr)
  • BY518 Principles of Toxiciology and Epidemiology (3 cr)
  • BY520 Microbiology (3 cr)
  • BY540 Introduction to Biomedical Rehabilitation Engineering & Science (3 cr)
  • BY548 Medical Microbiology (3 cr)
  • BY571 Anatomy & Physiology I (3 cr)
  • BY572 Anatomy & Physiology II (3 cr)
  • BY573 Anatomy & Physiology Lab I (2 cr)
  • BY574 Anatomy & Physiology Lab II (2 cr)
  • BY576 Current Topics in Biology & Medicine (3 cr)
  • BY588 Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine (3 cr)
  • BY604 Molecular Pharmacology (3 cr)
  • BY655 Cell and Molecular Biology of Cancer (3 cr)
  • BY660 Neurobiology (3 cr) ME380 Special Topics: Biomechanics (3 cr)

Computational Biology & Bioinformatics

  • BY514 Bioinformatics (4 cr)
  • BY610 Ecological Statistics and Experimental Design (3 cr)
  • ES505 Design of Experiments and Analysis of Data (3 cr)
  • MA571 Numerical Solution of Differential Equations (3 cr)
  • MA580 Introduction to Monte Carlo Simulation (3 cr)
  • STAT582 Mathematical Statistics I (3 cr)

Ecology, Evolution, and the Environment

  • BY525 Biological Systems & Environmental Change (3 cr)
  • BY528 Conservation Biology (3 cr)
  • BY531 Limnology (3 cr)
  • BY532 Limnology Lab (2 cr)
  • BY620 Evolution (3 cr)
  • CE575 Coastal Engineering (3 cr)
  • CE577 Atmospheric Chemistry (3 cr)
  • CE579 Water and Wastewater Treatment Design (3 cr)
  • CE580 Environmental Chemistry (3 cr)
  • CE682 Environmental Biological Processes (3 cr)
  • CH509 Receptor Modeling in Environmental Chemistry (S, 3 cr)
  • EHS 505 Methods and Analysis (3 cr)
  • ES533 Human Exposure Analysis (3 cr)
  • ES534 Air Pollution Control (3 cr)

Admission Requirements

Applicants should possess a baccalaureate (4-year) degree in biology or a relevant science (e.g., biochemistry, biophysics, environmental science) with the following minimum college course preparation: three semesters of biology including genetics, four semesters of chemistry including organic chemistry, two semesters of physics, and two semesters of mathematics including calculus.

A complete application file consists of the following items (click for more information):

  1. Application Form
  2. Resume and Statement of Purpose
  3. Letters of Recommendation – 3 letters required
  4. Official Transcripts
  5. Test Scores – GRE* and 80 for TOEFL/6.5 for IELTS (if applicable)

* GRE maybe waived for some applicants.

Supplemental information may be submitted if desired: this could include any other information that may help us evaluate your application.

Career Opportunities

Biological research is increasingly interdisciplinary. Biologists who combine intensive training in one area of bioscience with a broad understanding of related disciplines are in demand for jobs in the pharma/biotech industries and academics. In addition, career opportunities are available in a number of interesting areas including consulting, entrepreneurship, government, public policy, sales, financial services, technology transfer and writing.

Related Programs

Although it is based in the Department of Biology, the graduate program is designed to be truly interdisciplinary across major sciences.  Required courses in molecular and cell biology provide you with core knowledge of biological mechanisms at the graduate level.  Breadth elective requirements are designed to provide interdisciplinary exposure and acquisition of skills in various biomedical fields, chemistry, mathematics, and engineering.  A required course with content in bioethics, policy or law provides an important perspective on the impact of science on society.


Contact Us

If you are interested in learning more, have questions or are ready to apply contact:
Dan Capogna
Graduate School Coordinator

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