Graduate Program FAQs

MS Program in Chemistry & Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program in the Biological Sciences (IDPBS) with a Concentration in Chemistry

Is financial support available?

Yes! Most acceptance offers for the MS program are accompanied by a Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GTA). As an MS student you will be assigned teaching duties, and a stipend of at least $14,500 per year will be provided as compensation for this work. There are a limited number of out-of-state tuition remission waivers available, students are responsible for paying in-state tuition.

For IDPBS students, the GTA covers tuition (in-state and out-of-state) and health insurance, and provides a stipend of at least $23,000 per calendar year.

A Graduate Research Assistantship (GRA) may be provided if the student’s graduate mentor has received external funding through a grant or contract. The nature of the research, and the student’s duties and responsibilities are determined by the mentor.

What do Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTAs) entail?

GTAs typically teach 1 or 2 undergraduate lab courses during a semester. Duties include assisting in lab preparation, instruction, and grading course materials such as lab reports and quizzes. Additional assignments, such as proctoring for lecture courses are common. Assigned duties will average 20 hrs./wk.

What is the average time to degree completion?

The majority of MS students complete the program within 2 academic years (4 semesters), whereas IPDBS students typically complete the program within 5 academic years (10 semesters).

Will I be accepted to the program if I do not have an undergraduate degree in chemistry?

The majority of the applicants to the MS and IDPBS program hold either a BA or BS in chemistry. However, we do accept applicants who have BS degrees in biochemistry, biology, pharmacy or other chemically related fields provided they have taken a significant number of chemistry courses during their undergraduate studies. Typically, an applicant must have completed 2 semesters of general chemistry, 2 semesters of organic chemistry, and 3 or more upper division chemistry classes. Contact if you have further questions about degree requirements.

I want to go to med school.  How can a chemistry degree help me?

Taking advanced chemistry courses will help you strengthen your science foundation for the MCATs. Your research will help you learn how to solve complex problems, too. And with Brody School of Medicine right here at ECU, our Chemistry professors have strong ties to medical school faculty, especially through research collaborations on disease causes and treatments that you can be a part of! Alumni from our MS program have gone to medical school at UNC, ECU, and elsewhere.

Do any of your graduates ever go to dental school?

Absolutely! Your resume will be stronger if you apply with a Masters degree, because you will have the opportunity to present your work in professional settings, and develop leadership skills as a teaching assistant in our laboratory courses.

What is the minimum GPA needed to be accepted to the MS or IDPBS program?

A competitive applicant will have an overall GPA of 3.0 or greater and a GPA in their major of 3.2 or greater.

What are the minimum GRE scores needed to be accepted to the MS or IDPBS program?

Minimum GRE scores established by the graduate school are 30th percentile average on the verbal and quantitative sections of the GRE. Competitive applicants typically average better than 50th percentile. Neither program requires the chemistry subject test.

Is there a language requirement?

If English is not your native language and you have not completed at least one year of education (minimum of 18 credit hours) at a United States University, you are required to take a standardized English language exam. The Graduate School accepts either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or Pearson Test of English (PTE) and scores must be forwarded to the Graduate School by the testing service. An iBT TOEFL score of 20 on each section for a total minimum score of 80 or a minimum IELTS score of 6.5.

What are the deadlines for application?

Fall Admission

  • For the MS in Chemistry, International students must apply by March 1st, domestic students must apply no later than June 1st. To receive full consideration for admission, GTA stipend and out-of-state tuition remissions it is recommended that all students meet the March 1st deadline.
  • For the IDPBS concentration in Chemistry, all students must complete their application by April 1st.

Spring Admission

  • Both programs will consider applications for spring admission, but slots are usually limited.
  • For the MS in Chemistry, both international and domestic students must apply by November 1st.
  • For the IDPBS concentration in Chemistry, all students must complete their application by November 1st.

Where do I apply?

All graduate admissions are handled through the Graduate School. Admission materials and guides may be found on the Graduate School website.

Information on the GRE and testing centers and dates may be found on the GRE website.