Your First Step to Apply
To be admitted to the graduate program in EE Biology, you are required to have a graduate advisor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (EEB). Although you may apply to the program without having a committed graduate advisor, you will be required to have one by the time decisions on graduate admission are made by the Department. This requirement applies to all graduate applicants, including those persons applying for the Ph.D., thesis Masters, and 4 + 1 Masters degree programs. Advisors for the Ph.D. and thesis Masters programs must be a tenured or tenure-track faculty member; additionally professors of the practice may advise students seeking the 4 + 1 Masters degree.
Choosing A Graduate Advisor
Having a productive relationship with a graduate advisor is critically important to both you graduate student and your graduate advisor. Finding a graduate advisor requires considerable effort and careful consideration. Thus, you start the process of seeking an advisor early on in your consideration of graduate programs. Many good applicants to our graduate program miss out on the opportunity to join the EE Biology Department because they do not find a graduate advisor who is willing to accept them into her/his lab as well as to support their admission to the program. A faculty member typically accepts no more than one student per year on average. So, how do you become that one student this year? First, consult the faculty listing online to determine who is doing research in which you are interested. After you have identified the one or more faculty members whose interests match yours, e-mail them regarding your interest. You should arrange to have a conversation with your prospective graduate advisor by telephone or in person. Before you do, however, write a clear, articulate statement of your research interests (alternatively, internship for 4 + 1 Masters) that you can use in your email and conversation. The more focused and informed the statement of interest the better. EEB faculty will usually choose students on the basis of past experience, acquired skills, and common interests as well as the academic record. Providing a clear, accurate picture of these criteria is definitely in your best interest.
Although you may apply to the program without having a committed graduate advisor, you will be required to have one by the time decisions on graduate admission are made by the Department. This requirement applies to all graduate applicants, including those persons applying for the Ph.D., thesis Masters, and 4 + 1 Masters degree programs.
Applying to the Program
Prospective applicants should contact the faculty member with whom they are interested in studying before making an application. We have a limited number of positions open each year, and some labs do not accept new students in certain years. Moreover, we do not accept students into our graduate program without the faculty member and the prospective student having had the opportunity to discuss the student's potential project and the working relationship in advance of the decision on the application for graduate study. Thus, contacting the person with whom you want to work is an important step before making an application, and is necessary before applications are reviewed and evaluated.
Applicants for admission should have a strong undergraduate record, particularly in the biological sciences, and enthusiasm for a research career. At this time, EEB does not require applicants to take the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). TOEFL scores, however, are required of all applicants from countries where English is not the native language. Most applicants have taken undergraduate courses in Chemistry (including Organic Chemistry), Mathematics (including Calculus), and Physics, but the college background should be appropriate to the student's proposed area of graduate study and career goals. All applicants must be able to express themselves in clear written English.
The deadline for completion of applications for admission in the fall semester is December 1st for PhD degrees and June 30 for Masters degrees. We do consider applicants for spring admission, although spring admissions are rare. The deadline for completion of applications for admission in the spring semester is October 1st.
Prospective applicants should also complete an online student survey, which will provide us with some initial information about your application, and let us know that you are interested in our program. After completing this form, you will be assigned a temporary personal web page that gives you access to further information about Tulane and New Orleans.
There is a $50 application fee for all +1 Non-thesis Masters of Science and Thesis Masters of Science applicants. If you are a Tulane undergraduate student, the application fee will be waived ONLY IF you contact firstname.lastname@example.org prior to paying the fee and submitting your application.
Deadlines for applications to enter an EEB graduate degree program the following fall semester are as follows:
- Ph.D. Program - December 1
- Thesis and Terminal Masters of Science - June 30
- +1 Non-thesis Masters of Science - June 30 (early admissions, January 15)
- Combined 4+1 Masters of Science - June 30 (early admissions, January 15)
The deadline for applications to enter any EEB graduate degree program in a spring semester is October 1.
Checklist for completing your graduate application
- Contact potential advisor
- Complete an online application – Application deadline for the Fall semester is Dec 1 for PhD degrees and June 30 for MS degrees. The deadline is Oct. 1 for Spring semester
- Submit letters of reference (the online application form will create links for submitting your letters)
The EEB Graduate Program Description web page has basic information and links to help you complete each of the steps listed above.
Our Graduate Study Procedures page will provide you with more detailed information on general admission and program requirements.
For Further Information Contact:
Dr. Sunshine Van Bael | Associate Professor & Graduate Program Coordinator
Phone: (504) 862-8291
Office: 364 Israel
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
New Orleans, Louisiana 70118-5698
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