Master’s in Biology: Accelerated Track

Master of Science in Biology
Accelerated Track

The Accelerated Track is designed to provide high ability undergraduate students the opportunity to begin their graduate studies during their senior year. The purpose of the Accelerated Track MS Biology is to 1) recognize outstanding research at the undergraduate level by allowing its incorporation as part of the development of a master’s research thesis, and 2) enable high-quality students to complete both bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in biology in approximately a five-year period.

Students currently enrolled at Truman may apply for admission into the Accelerated Track in the fall or spring of their junior year.  Fast Track applicants are expected to have engaged in significant research activity with a member of the graduate faculty. Students accepted into the Accelerated Track by the Biology graduate committee will begin their graduate coursework in the senior year by taking 5-6 hours of graduate credit recommended by their prospective thesis advisor.  The courses taken for graduate credit may not be counted towards the bachelor’s degree and must be paid for as graduate credit hours at the time of enrollment (consider this an investment in your future!).  Participation in the Accelerated Track allows the student to qualify for a summer research stipend ($2000) and 6 hours of tuition waiver for each of two summers following graduation with the bachelor degree.  The academic year following the first summer will be supported with up to 18 hours of tuition waiver and a standard GTRA stipend ($8000).

Admission Requirements for Students into the Accelerated Master of Science Program in Biology

1.  Bachelor’s degree in biology or chemistry

2.  A 3.25 cumulative GPA on a 4.0 scale.

3.  Scores on the General Graduate Record Examination at or above or above the 50th percentile (Scores on the GRE Biology exam are optional, but recommended).

4.  Three letters of recommendation.  One letter must be from your thesis advisor (likely the faculty you have been working with for your undergraduate research.)

5.  Personal statement of interests in biology and career goals.  

If desired, students may delay taking the Graduate Record Exam until their senior year. Thus, before completion of the bachelor degree, students in the Accelerated Track will have a provisional acceptance into the graduate program. Full admission to the MS program will be possible only after completion of the BS or BA degree and submission of satisfactory GRE scores to the graduate office.  All applications for the Accelerated track must be made through the Biology graduate committee.

For more information, contact:
Dr. Chad Montgomery,, 660-785-4587