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Combined BS & MS in Biology

American University offers students the opportunity to earn both undergraduate and graduate degrees through its accelerated bachelor's/master's programs. Undergraduate students may complete up to 3 credits for every 9 credits required for the graduate degree that may be applied to the requirements for both degree programs. The department that oversees the graduate program the student enters will determine if the courses the undergraduate student completes will satisfy master's degree requirements. Bachelor's/master's students must complete at least 18 in-residence credit hours at the graduate level after the bachelor's degree is earned and maintain continuous, sequential enrollment in the two programs.

This program enables qualified students to earn, in a continuous plan of study, both the BS in Biology and the MS in Biology.


  • Undergraduate biology majors should apply for admission to the BS/Master's program by the end of the junior year. Admission is open to undergraduates whose overall grade point average and grade point average in biology course is 3.00 or higher. Applications must be accompanied by two letters of recommendation and a statement of purpose Each student's file must be approved by the department's Graduate Studies Committee prior to the end of the junior year to assure adequate time to complete degree requirements for the program.
  • Students should discuss their interest in the program and their course schedules with members of the faculty before submitting a formal application. Interested students are encouraged to enroll in up to 3 credit hours of BIO-490 Independent Study Project to conduct independent study research before applying.
  • All requirements for the BS in Biology
  • Undergraduate students may apply up to 9 credit hours of approved graduate level course work to satisfy the requirements of both degrees.
  • All requirements for the MS in Biology, including a minimum of 18 credit hours completed in residence in graduate status after the undergraduate degree has been awarded. Students must finish the master's degree requirements within three years from the date of first enrollment in the master's program.

For more information, visit the Provost's Website.