Application and Admission

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Application & Admission

Thank you for applying to this most active interdepartmental graduate program for plant science research. Research in plant biology is one of the recognized strengths of Iowa State University.

We are accepting applications for graduate students for Fall 2018 (applications must be received by January 15, 2018). Although applications can be submitted at any time, applications should be completed by January 15, for full consideration for fellowships and assistantships.

The IPB graduate program offers both M.S. and Ph.D. degrees. An M.S. degree is not required for Ph.D. applicants. IPB uses the following guidelines to help identify acceptable applicants.

  1. A bachelors or masters degree in plant biology or closely related area.
  2. Class ranking in the upper 25%, or a GPA above 3.2/4.0.
  3. Total GRE for Verbal plus Quantitative score of 310 or above and a GRE Analytical writing score of 4.0 (min 3.0) recommended.
  4. A minimum TOEFL score of 79 (CBT) or IELTS 6.5 is required for international applicants.  Exceptions may apply for those whose native language is English or those who have earned a degree in a country where English is the only official language.
  5. Research experience is preferred.

Applications:

Admission to Plant Biology at ISU is a two-step process; you should submit a pre-application to the Plant Biology program to be considered for admission to Plant Biology. If you are accepted, then you must also submit the Graduate College Application to be formally admitted to the University. Admission to both Plant Biology and to ISU is required. If you have any questions about the application process, please email us (ipb@iastate.edu) or phone (515) 294-9052.

Step 1: Complete the on-line IPB Pre-Application (there is NO FEE for submitting a pre-application.)

Pre-applications will be evaluated to determine if applicants meet our qualifications for admission. Applicants who meet the qualifications will be notified by the Plant Biology program and instructed to submit a formal application as described in Step 2 below.

Step 2: ISU Graduate College Application

If you are acceptable to the IPB major, the next step is to complete the ISU Graduate College Application and provide some additional information to the IPB program.

Required by Office of Admissions

  • Required Electronically:
    • Fill out an Iowa State University Graduate Application. Answer each question (please type or print) following the directions included with the form. Enter "Plant Biology" for major. If you specify a department or departments, your application will be considered specifically by the department(s) indicated, as well as by Plant Biology.
    • Application Fee. The application fee will be reimbursed by the IPB program if you receive and accept an offer of admission and after you arrive at Iowa State University.
    • Official GRE scores (sent by testing services)
    • Official TOEFL scores (sent by testing services)
  • Required to be sent by mail to the address below:

Required by IPB

International Admission:

  • When your pre-application has been received, it will be evaluated immediately to determine if our academic qualifications are met.
  • If your application meets our academic qualifications, the IPB program will contact you to request that you complete the formal application process by submitting an application to the ISU Graduate College and by providing additional materials to the IPB program. This shall not be considered to be an offer of admission to the IPB program.
  • Full and complete applications will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee. Comments by the Admissions Committee are forwarded within two weeks to the Chair of the program.
  • The Chair, based on Admissions Committee comments and review of your application, will decide either whether or not to conduct an interview over the telephone.
  • The Chair will make offers to international students between February 15 to March 21, based on ranking, outcome of the telephone interview, research interest, and funding availability via e-mail communication. You are required to notify your acceptance by  April 15.
  • Students who are not offered Admission will be advised no later than May 30.

Domestic Admission:

  • When your pre-application has been received, it will be evaluated immediately to determine if our academic qualifications are met.
  • If your application meets our academic qualifications, the IPB program will contact you to request that you complete the formal application process by submitting an application to the ISU Graduate College and by providing additional materials to the IPB program. This shall not be considered to be an offer of admission to the IPB program.
  • Full and complete applications will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee. Comments by the Admissions Committee are forwarded within two weeks to the Chair of the program.
  • The Chair, based on Admissions Committee comments and review of your application, will decide either
    • To invite you for a visit to Iowa State University to meet with faculty and present graduate students. This is a chance for us to get to know you and for you to see if our program will meet your research interests and needs. We will pay all reasonable travel and lodging costs associated with the visit. A decision regarding admission and funding will be made immediately after the visit. You will be notified around the first week of February.
    • To place your application into HOLD status until February 28, before a final decision is made. You will be notified no later than March 15.
    • To deny admission. You will be notified no later than May 30.