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Admissions Timeline

November 30, 2023 Deadline for Applications

Early January 2024 Invitations to Open House/Interviews

February 2-3, 2024 First (in-person) Open House/Interviews

February 16-17, 2024 Second (in-person) Open House/Interviews

Late February - Early March Offers of admission (from both open houses)

April 15, 2024 Deadline (agreed by all U.S. PhD programs) for responding to offers of admission.

Notable Application Features

The Biological Sciences PhD Program requires applicants to enter at least three names of program faculty who might serve as their potential advisors. Please review the list of research faculty and enter the names of your proposed advisors in the space provided in the GSAS application. This information, together with your “primary program subfield” selection and statement of purpose, helps us to evaluate your interests and potential match with the program.

No GREs are required for the Biological Sciences PhD program.
The application deadline is November 30, 2023.

English Proficiency Requirement rules may require submission of TOEFL or IELTS examination scores. The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences requires a minimum score of 600 on the paper-based test, 100 on the internet-based test, or 7.5 for the IELTS.

Advice to Applicants

Holistic evaluation centers on research aptitude and commitment, together with academic, social, and character considerations, as well as a perceived match with the program. Solicited letters of support and statements should be chosen and written accordingly. Letters about academic experiences and/or extracurricular activities are most valuable if they provide insight into interests, attitudes, and character as well as accomplishments. 
Pass/Fail grades and other Covid-19 adjustments will not disadvantage an applicant.


Application fee waiver requests for financial hardship, extenuating circumstances, or military service, accessed at the end of the application, will not delay consideration.
Tuition, fees, and a generous stipend are paid for all graduate students accepted to the program.


Please explore the Biological Sciences PhD Program.
For questions about the Biological Sciences PhD program please consult the Biological Sciences FAQ webpage and direct any remaining questions to [email protected].

Further information about the online application can be found on the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) website.

For questions about general GSAS application procedures please consult the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences Admissions Office Admissions FAQ webpage, and direct unanswered questions to the admissions office via email at [email protected] with "Question Not Answered on Website or Change Application Information" in the subject line. In the text of the email, you must include your name, date of birth, and the department to which you are applying, "Biological Sciences".

Other Programs

Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC) also hosts PhD programs in the biomedical sciences, which can be explored here. Applications to both Biological Sciences and a CUIMC program are permitted, but they are separate applications.