Graduate Programs

Department of Biology Graduate Programs

The Department of Biology at Saint Joseph's University offers programs leading to M.S. and M.A. degrees in biology. The goal of these programs is to provide students with advanced training in a broad range of subjects within the life sciences.

male biology student in biodiversity lab at saint joseph's university

Graduate Biology Programs

The M.S. program is a thesis-based, full-time program designed to be completed in two years. The M.A. program is course-based and is designed for full- and part-time students. Current undergraduate students at Saint Joseph's with majors in biology or environmental science may be able to complete a combined 5-year B.A./M.A. or B.S./M.S. degree. 

Students in both programs are required to take both lecture and seminar-style courses. Most lectures also have a lab component. M.S. students must complete a research thesis, while M.A. students have the opportunity to conduct research for credits. 

Graduate students enrolled in a master's or MBA program at another university or college and wish to take graduate-level courses for credit at Saint Joseph's can also apply to be a Visiting Student.

Students who have completed a bachelor's degree but who do not have prerequisite courses for medical, dental or veterinary school can enroll in the post-baccalaureate pre-health certificate program, which can be completed in less than a year. Please contact Liz Gatti, director of transfer and adult admission, for more information.

two graduate students doing research at saint joseph's university

Fields of Study & Research

Faculty members in the Department of Biology teach a wide range of courses, including advanced cell biology, immunology, biochemistry, bacterial pathogenesis, microbiology, neurobiology, physiology, histopathology comparative anatomy, animal behavior and bioinformatics.

M.S. and M.A. students also have the opportunity to conduct research in the fields of cell biology, environmental and molecular microbiology, behavioral genetics, neuroscience and more. The department is well-equipped for teaching and research at the graduate level. Major equipment available includes transmission, scanning and confocal microscopes, tissue culture facilities, an extensive vivarium, and sophisticated plant growth chambers as well as a rooftop greenhouse and experimental green roof.

Participate in Research

Explore Our Facilities

male graduate biology student at Saint Joseph's biology lab

Financial Assistance

Full-time M.S. students are eligible for graduate teaching assistantships that provide a tuition scholarship. To be considered for this scholarship, applications must be received no later than March 1st

Stipends, in the form of teaching assistantships, may be available for M.S. and M.A. students. Other teaching opportunities may be available to both M.A. and M.S. candidates. Qualified students may find employment as assistants in introductory undergraduate laboratories. Graduate students may also apply to the GeoKids LINKS program, which offers graduate stipends.

Where Are They Now?

Our graduate biology students go on to pursue a wide range of career paths after completing their degree program. Here are a few of our graduates and their success stories. 

Christopher Saul '19 at Saint Joseph's University

Christopher Saul '19 (M.S.)

Christopher Saul '19, from Dr. Matthew Nelson's lab, defended his M.S. thesis in the spring 2019 semester. He is currently a research specialist at Children's Hospital of Philadephia. 

Jamie Gallo '15 (M.A. in biology) at Saint Joseph's University

Jamie Gallo '15 (M.A.)

Jamie Gallo '15 (M.A.) obtained her DMD from The Maurice H. Kornberg School of Dentistry at Temple University. She is now a dentist at Family First Health.

Riazati sits in a lab in a green top

Niknaz Riazati '17 (M.S.)

Niknaz Riazati '17 (M.S.), a native of Iran, is a Ph.D. student in the Mollecular, Cellular and Integrative Physiology Group at the University of California's Davis College of Biological Sciences. While at Saint Joseph's, Riazati worked with Dr. Matthew Nelson to research the neuroscience of sleep. When she completes her doctoral degree, she wants to research and return to teaching.