The PMB Program encourages applications from students who are excited to use a variety of organisms and approaches to answer fundamental scientific questions and who are aiming to pursue research careers in academia, industr,y or government.  Washington University gives consideration to all applicants regardless of race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, veteran status, or disability.

Requirements for admission to the PMB graduate program include a baccalaureate degree, generally in the natural or physical sciences or a field of engineering, and a strong background in biology with courses in mathematics, general chemistry, organic chemistry, and physics.  Exceptions will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  Applicants must submit Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores.  The GRE subject tests in Biology, Biochemistry, or Chemistry are optional.  Foreign students not educated at English-speaking colleges or universities must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).

Because an essential criterion for admission is evidence of potential as an independent research scientist, undergraduate or postgraduate research experience is essential.

The Process

The PMB Program is one of eleven Ph.D. programs offered within the Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences (DBBS).  Applications to DBBS are open from September 1 to December 1 and are then forwarded to the appropriate admissions committee.  Because all twelve programs use the same application form, be sure to specify that you are applying to the PMB Program.

The application deadline is December 1 and is through DBBS.  For questions regarding the application, contact DBBS at 1-800-852-9074 (toll-free) or by email to

After applications are reviewed, outstanding candidates are invited to visit St. Louis at the University's expense.  This gives applicants the chance to meet faculty and current students and to learn more about ongoing research, educational opportunities and life at the University and in the St. Louis area.

Students offered admission are admitted only once per year, to begin classes in the fall semester.  Admitted students can matriculate in the summer and receive stipend support before classes begin, if they wish, in order to get settled and begin their first research rotation.

Each admitted student in DBBS is guaranteed a competitive stipend (click here for current DBBS stipend levels), health insurance coverage, and free tuition for the entire duration of training, provided that all academic standards are maintained.