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Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Offered By: Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology

Onsite | Full-Time | 5 years

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About the PhD in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology Program

Through a departmental core curriculum as well as research area-specific courses, laboratory rotations, qualifying examinations, mentored research, and professional development, all MMI PhD students are prepared to engage in cutting edge research and scholarship that advances knowledge. MMI PhD students hone their scholarship, research and professional skills. Course and laboratory work can address problems in microbial pathogenesis, immunology, disease transmission, and diseases related to malaria, mosquito and arboviral biology.

Students can choose to complete the traditional MMI PhD program or the MMI PhD program concentration in Rigorous, Reproducible, and Responsible Research Investigation in Immunology & Microbiology (R 3 IM). The concentration in Rigorous, Reproducible, and Responsible Research Investigation in Immunology & Microbiology (R 3 IM) conveys a broad background in immunology and infectious diseases research, with a special emphasis on critical thinking, logic, ethics, and written and oral skills to help graduates become communicators of complex scientific concepts and agents of change in their workplaces and communities.

What Can You Do With a Graduate Degree In Molecular Microbiology And Immunology?

Visit the  Graduate Employment Outcomes Dashboard to learn about Bloomberg School graduates' employment status, sector, and salaries.

Sample Careers

  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Research Associate
  • Science Communicator or Writer
  • Scientist (academia, industry)
  • Specialist in Science Regulatory Affairs
  • Faculty, Professor
  • Science Advocate (nonprofit agencies)
  • Public Health Service (NIH, CDC, FDA)
  • Science Policy Fellow

Curriculum for the PhD in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology

Browse an overview of the requirements for this PhD program in the JHU  Academic Catalogue  and explore all course offerings in the Bloomberg School  Course Directory .

Current students can view the MMI student handbook on the MMI portal site.

Topic Areas

MMI faculty are recognized experts in a wide variety of infectious diseases research areas, allowing our PhD students to study the biology of disease based on their research interests and career goals. Our PhD students gain a comprehensive understanding of infectious diseases that provides a foundation to launch careers that directly tackle critical public health challenges.  

Topic Areas include: 

  • Bacterial pathogenesis
  • Cell biology 
  • Fungal pathogenesis 
  • Medical entomology/Disease ecology
  • Parasite pathogenesis 
  • Rigor, Reproducibility, and Responsibility in Scientific Practice
  • Tick-borne diseases
  • Vaccine development 
  • Vector biology
  • Viral pathogenesis

Admissions Requirements

For general admissions requirements, please visit the How to Apply page.

Standardized Test Scores

Standardized test scores (GRE) are  optional  for this program. The admissions committee will make no assumptions if a standardized test score is omitted from an application, but will require evidence of quantitative/analytical ability through other application components such as academic transcripts and/or supplemental questions.  Applications will be reviewed holistically based on all application components.

Vivien Thomas PhD Scholars

The  Vivien Thomas Scholars Initiative (VTSI)  is an endowed fellowship program at Johns Hopkins for PhD students in STEM fields. It provides full tuition, stipend, and benefits while also providing targeted mentoring, networking, community, and professional development opportunities. Students who have attended a historically Black college and university (HBCU) or other minority serving institution (MSI) for undergraduate study are eligible to apply. To be considered for the VTSI, you will need to submit a SOPHAS application, VTSI supplementary materials, and all supporting documents (letters, transcripts, and test scores) by December 1, 2023. VTSI applicants are eligible for an  application fee waiver , but the fee waiver must be requested by November 15, 2023 and prior to submission of the SOPHAS application.

viven-thomas-scholars

All full-time PhD students will receive the following support for all years of the program: stipend, full tuition, individual health insurance, University Health Services clinic fee, vision insurance, and dental insurance.

Need-Based Relocation Grants Students who  are admitted to PhD programs at JHU  starting in Fall 2023 or beyond can apply to receive a $1500 need-based grant to offset the costs of relocating to be able to attend JHU.   These grants provide funding to a portion of incoming students who, without this money, may otherwise not be able to afford to relocate to JHU for their PhD program. This is not a merit-based grant. Applications will be evaluated solely based on financial need.  View more information about the need-based relocation grants for PhD students .

Questions about the program? We're happy to help.

Ashley Choi , Senior Academic Coordinator

Alex Kim , Senior Academic Program Coordinator  Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health 615 North Wolfe Street, Room E5014 Baltimore, Maryland 21205 Fax: (410) 955-0105

Georgetown University.

Georgetown University Medical Center

Georgetown University.

PhD in Microbiology & Immunology

Through the PhD in Microbiology and Immunology, students will learn the dynamics of the host/parasite relationship, including the host defense systems, and the relationship of microorganisms to diseases. Upon graduation, students will have a firm foundation in methods, tools, and techniques for a career in research as well as mentorship from Georgetown University faculty who are leading experts in the field.

Our PhD program is customized to the student’s interests. Upon entering the program, students will meet with their advisors to plan their coursework and select laboratories for research rotations.

PhD students can receive merit-based aid through fellowship and assistantship awards. The awards cover tuition, stipend, student health insurance, and mandatory fees. An average of 2 students are awarded each year. Visit the Biomedical Graduate Education website for more information on PhD Funding.

Learn about the application process and requirements.

Learn about the required exams, research rotations, courses, and PhD Dissertation here.

Check the list of required and elective courses.

Course Schedule

Find an example course schedule.

Student Resources

Browse resources and opportunities for our students.

Get more information about the program and department.

Career Advancement

Our students benefit from the services of the Biomedical Graduate Education career office, including one-on-one advising, skills workshops, leadership programs and more to help them take the next step in their professions.

Microbiology, PHD

On this page:, at a glance: program details.

  • Location: Tempe campus
  • Second Language Requirement: No

Program Description

Degree Awarded: PHD Microbiology

The PhD program in microbiology offers a dynamic research environment; a broad range of basic, translational and use-inspired research areas; advanced transdisciplinary training; and opportunities to work with world-class faculty and collaborative research partners committed to training scientific leaders with skills necessary for addressing significant global microbiological problems and challenges.

This program focuses on the smallest of living things and immunology. Students can tailor the program around their interests and gain skills in contemporary approaches used in microbiology, biomedicine and biotechnology. They train in a broad array of fields, including microbial ecology and evolution, geomicrobiology, bacterial physiology and genetics, bacterial pathogenesis, metabolic engineering, immunology and vaccine development, and cancer biology.

Faculty members are associated with the School of Life Sciences, The Biodesign Institute, The Translational Genomics Institute, Barrow Neurological Institute, and other area hospitals and research centers.

Interdisciplinary partners within ASU

Participating faculty members and researchers come from many departments, colleges, centers and institutes across the university.

  • ASU School of Life Sciences
  • ASU Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering
  • ASU The Biodesign Institute
  • ASU School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment
  • ASU School for Energy, Material and Transport Engineering

Interdisciplinary parters outside ASU

  • St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center/Barrow Neurological Institute
  • Carl T. Hayden Veteran's Administration Medical Center
  • Mayo Clinic in Arizona
  • Translational Genomics Research Institute
  • University of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix
  • Phoenix Children’s Hospital

Program Faculty   PhD Students

Courses and electives

Elective courses (6 - 24 credit hours).

  • MIC 791 Seminar: Virology Journal Club
  • MIC 598  Special Topics: Immun: Molecular and Cell Foundations
  • MIC 598 Special Topics: Advanced Immunology
  • MCB 791  Seminar: Molecular Virology Journal Club 
  • BIO 611 Topics Resp Conduct Research: Emerging Technologies Life Science
  • MIC 598: Immunology: Molecular & Cellular Foundations
  • MIC 598: General Virology
  • MIC 598: Advanced Immunology
  • MIC 598: Bacterial Diversity and Systematics
  • MIC 598: Novel Models for Host-Microbe Interactions
  • MIC 598: Bioinformatic Analysis of High-throughput DNA Data
  • MIC 598: Bacterial Pathogenesis
  • MIC 598: Geomicrobiology
  • MIC 598: Microbial Ecology and Evolution
  • MIC 598: Viromics 

Application and admission information

How to apply.

Applications open September 1 for admission in Fall of the following year. The application deadline is December 1. We accept applications for Fall semesters only. We cannot guarantee that applications received after the December 1 deadline will be considered for admission.

All applicants must apply by filling out ASU's Graduate Admissions application. All application materials must be submitted through the application or to Graduate Admissions directly. Please do not mail or email any documents to the School of Life Sciences. 

  • Required materials and information include the following:
  • 1-2 page personal statement
  • An up to date CV or resume
  • The names of relevant SOLS faculty you have been in touch with who you might be interested in being supervised by
  • Unofficial transcripts and English proficiency test scores (if applicable)
  • The names and emails of at least 3 recommenders to write you letters of recommendation

Application review process and timeline

Following the December 1 deadline, faculty will begin reviewing applications. Applicants should monitor their My ASU priority tasks to ensure there are no missing materials in their application.

Faculty will decide which applicants they would like to invite to our Graduate Recruitment Weekends (GRWs), typically held in February. Applicants will hear from the School of Life Sciences in January if they are invited to participate in the GRWs.

Admission decisions will begin after the GRWs, and applicants typically receive final decisions by April 1.

Requirements

Minimum requirements for admission include the following:

  • Cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • There are other ways to demonstrate English proficiency beyond the tests, so please refer to ASU's English proficiency webpage to review how you might satisfy requirements

Desired qualifications typically seen in competitive candidates:

  • Research experience and a letter of recommendation from a faculty research supervisor
  • English proficiency scores that meet these teaching assistant language proficiency requirements

Please note that the GRE is not required.

Students offered admission to a PhD program in the School of Life Sciences will typically receive a funding offer as well. While individual funding offers may differ to some degree, they typically include teaching assistant and/or research assistant positions each semester (summer optional) for 5 years. These positions provide financial coverage through the following:

  • A standard salary stipend paid biweekly
  • Tuition remission covering enrollment in 6-18 credit hours for fall and spring semesters and 1-14 credit hours for summer semesters
  • Health insurance coverage

To discover more, check out the ASU Graduate College's funding opportunities !

Degree Requirements

84 credit hours, a written comprehensive exam, an oral comprehensive exam, a prospectus and a dissertation

Required Core (4 credit hours) BIO 610 Introduction to Responsible Conduct of Research in Life Sciences (1) MIC 501 Foundations in Microbiology (3)

Electives or Research (68 credit hours)

Culminating Experience (12 credit hours) MIC 799 Dissertation (12)

Admission Requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's or master's degree in the biological sciences, biochemistry or a closely related field from a regionally accredited institution.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

Applicants must submit the following:

  • graduate admission application and application fee
  • official transcripts
  • academic record form
  • personal statement
  • curriculum vitae or resume
  • three letters of recommendation
  • proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of their current residency.

Prior research experience is a desired qualification for admission.

Next Steps to attend ASU

Learn about our programs, apply to a program, visit our campus, learning outcomes.

  • Able to review the scholarly literature associated with research questions in microbiology.
  • Able to design and execute a research plan in an area of microbiology under advisement of their mentors.
  • Able to communicate science effectively, both orally and in writing.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of this program's intense and interactive educational and research training are prepared for advanced careers in research and education, specifically in bacteriology, virology, mycology, immunology and oncology.

Career possibilities are diverse, with opportunities in academic organizations, research and development industries, government service and other professional organizations. Examples include:

  • instructors in universities and colleges
  • principal investigators in government labs and nonprofit organizations
  • professors in universities and colleges
  • research associates in universities
  • research scientists in industry

Program Contact Information

If you have questions related to admission, please click here to request information and an admission specialist will reach out to you directly. For questions regarding faculty or courses, please use the contact information below.

find a phd microbiology

  • Doing a PhD in Microbiology

What Does a PhD in Microbiology Focus On?

The exact focus of a PhD in microbiology can vary greatly, reflecting the nature of the field of study as a whole. Microbiology is defined as the study of microbes. Microbes are living organisms that are too small to be visible to the naked eye, including bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

From diseases to the production of food, microorganisms such as these play a vital role in life as we know it. The role of microbiologists includes treating and preventing infections, tracking the role of microbes in climate changes, ensuring food is safe.

A microbiology PhD programme can include:

  • Molecular bacteriology – which focuses on bacterial pathogens of humans. A PhD in this field could involve studying the cellular biology of bacteria and investigating how they interact with the human immune system.
  • Virology – which is the study of viruses. A PhD in virology typically revolves around infectious diseases and developing our understanding of the way viruses function.
  • Molecular biology – where a student could learn about the composition and processes of cells. Research into cell biology has a wide range of application such as gene therapy, and planning effective targeting for new disease treatments.
  • Mycology – which is the study of fungi. Postgraduate research in mycology could see researchers looking at the genetic properties of fungi to develop new tools to monitor and control their toxicity.
  • Environmental microbiology – which focuses on the role microbes play in the environment. A PhD programme in environmental microbiology could conduct research into biofuels and bioremediation of contaminated land. Alternatively, it could focus on the monitoring of diseases in algae or coral reefs.
  • Biogeochemisty – which studies the chemical, geological and biological process within the natural environment. Doctoral students in this field could investigate the emission of methane from microbes and how they contribute to climate change.

These are just a few of the areas a PhD in microbiology can specialise in. There are many others with medical, agricultural, environmental and commercial applications. Research projects typically revolve around lab work, and involve coordinating with another faculty or school within the university, and working alongside microbiologists, immunologists, biologists, biomedical scientists, and chemists.

Browse PhDs in Microbiology

A next-generation genetic technology to identify biotechnologically-valuable enzymes and transporters, development of fluorescent organic molecules for application in super-resolution imaging techniques, ubiquitin-dependent signalling pathways in ageing, speciation in facultatively sexual species, energy dissipation in human soft tissue during impacts, entry requirements for a phd in microbiology.

Basic requirements are typically a strong (2:1) Master’s degree in a relevant subject from an accredited university. Due to the scope of microbiology, relevant subjects can include biology, biochemistry, biomedical science, civil engineering, geoscience, medicine, agriculture, and earth sciences .

International students will also need to meet several minimum English language requirements set by the university, usually as part of a TOEFL or IELTS exam.

It is a good idea to think about your research interest before deciding to apply for a PhD in microbiology. For example, an undergraduate degree in medicine would be a good foundation ahead of a microbiology PhD programme focusing on the interaction of microbes and the human immune system. Alternatively, a graduate student of civil engineering would be suited for a research project investigating the degradation of crude oil in petroleum reserves.

Duration and Programme Types

The typical duration for a microbiology PhD programme is 3-4 years full-time, or 6 years part-time. In addition to the microbial research, most PhD programmes also include lectures and seminars which aim to equip postgraduates with transferable research skills such as project management, academic writing and commercial awareness.

A postgraduate microbiology course involves conducting original research in this area; therefore, applicants can expect to be involved in lab work. Most universities have the facilities for you to work on-campus, however some specialist subjects may require working at dedicated research centres. However, it is important to read the details of the research programme you are interested in. Though most programmes have a focus on lab work, other courses can be computational or statistical in nature. Therefore, the exact requirements for doing a PhD in microbiology depend greatly on the specific project.

Costs and Funding

The cost of doing a PhD in microbiology will depend on the university you study with, but average tuition fee is £4000-£6000 per academic year for UK/EU students and £20,000-£28,000 per academic year for international students.

A variety of scholarship and funding support options are available for postgraduate study. For microbiology in particular the BBSRC Doctoral Training Partnerships oversee a number of PhDs, and provide tuition fees for postgraduate research students. Each university has their own funding sources, which are advertised on their websites.

Available Career Paths

A research degree in microbiology can lead to a variety of career paths and jobs, so microbiologists can be found in a wide range of industries. The lab work nature of most PhD programmes equips you with the necessary skills for the research and development industry. Options for R&D work include specialist research areas such as molecular microbiology, microbial physiology, microbial pathogenesis, molecular genetics and immunology. Generally, the typical microbiology salary is higher in R&D than in the public sector.

Many post doctorates work in clinical setting such as medical laboratories and hospitals, operating as biomedical scientists or clinical scientists. In this setting you could expect to test samples to diagnose infections or develop treatments and vaccines.

find a phd microbiology

Another career path for microbiology doctorates includes environmental science. Microbes contribute greatly to global warming, and microbiologists investigate the way in which microbes affect the atmosphere. Microbes can also be used for biofuel and for land decontamination.

Some doctorates choose to pursue microbiology jobs in agriculture, investigating the role of microbes in soil, developing techniques to contain plant pests, and preventing infectious disease in cattle. Alternatively, food manufacturing factors often look for microbiologists to oversee manufacturing processes to ensure the quality and safety of their products.

Postgraduate research often leads to a career in academia. Being a lecturer at a university is a great way to share your knowledge with others, and allows you to propose research projects and supervise PhD students to continue your research.

As mentioned previously, most microbiology PhD courses include research skill modules which equip doctorates with transferable skills which can be applied outside of the career options described above. Effective communication, project management, and research skills allow PhD students to work in any field.

Due to the wide range of microbiology jobs available, microbiology doctorates can expect a generous salary. The salary of microbiologists working for the NHS is determined by a set of pay bands , which include around £40,000 upon qualification and can exceed £100,000 at the highest pay band.

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Microbiology PhD

The Graduate Group in Microbiology is composed of faculty from diverse departments, colleges, and schools (Plant and Microbial Biology; Molecular and Cell Biology; Public Health; Civil and Environmental Engineering; Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering; Environmental Science, Policy, and Management; Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology; Optometry; Integrative Biology). It is administered by the Department of Plant and Microbial Biology. The group awards the PhD degree in Microbiology. Students in the group have access to diverse disciplines through an integrated program of study that allows each student to pursue specialized interests. Students gain a breadth of understanding of microbiology from the molecular to the cellular levels of organization, as well as the interactions of microbes - beneficial and pathogenic - with other organisms.

Faculty in the Graduate Group in Microbiology have research interests in four broad areas: ecology and evolution, genetics and development, physiology and biochemistry, and host-microbe interactions. The research of many faculty spans more than one of these categories. In addition, the research goals vary from addressing fundamental questions in biology to applied studies in the control or use of microbes. Some faculty conduct research on both fundamental and applied topics.

Contact Info

[email protected]

111 Koshland Hall

Berkeley, CA 94720

At a Glance

Department(s)

Microbiology Graduate Group

Admit Term(s)

Application Deadline

December 1, 2023

Degree Type(s)

Doctoral / PhD

Degree Awarded

GRE Requirements

Arizona State University

Microbiology, PhD

  • Program description
  • At a glance
  • Degree requirements
  • Admission requirements
  • Tuition information
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Science, Scientist, approved for STEM-OPT extension, molecular, plant, sols

Join us to learn how microbes impact human health and the environment, gain theoretical and practical training in your chosen area of interest, and become an expert ready to contribute to the greater good.

The PhD program in microbiology offers a dynamic research environment; a broad range of basic, translational and use-inspired research areas; advanced transdisciplinary training; and opportunities to work with world-class faculty and collaborative research partners committed to training scientific leaders with skills necessary for addressing significant global microbiological problems and challenges.

This program focuses on the smallest of living things and immunology. Students can tailor the program around their interests and gain skills in contemporary approaches used in microbiology, biomedicine and biotechnology. They train in a broad array of fields, including microbial ecology and evolution, geomicrobiology, bacterial physiology and genetics, bacterial pathogenesis, metabolic engineering, immunology and vaccine development, and cancer biology.

Faculty members are associated with the School of Life Sciences, The Biodesign Institute, The Translational Genomics Institute, Barrow Neurological Institute, and other area hospitals and research centers.

This program may be eligible for an Optional Practical Training extension for up to 36 months. This OPT work authorization term may help international students gain skills and experience in the U.S. Those interested in an OPT extension should review ASU degrees that qualify for the STEM-OPT extension at ASU's International Students and Scholars Center website.

The OPT extension only applies to students on an F-1 visa and does not apply to students completing the degree through ASU Online.

  • College/school: The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
  • Location: Tempe

84 credit hours, a written comprehensive exam, an oral comprehensive exam, a prospectus and a dissertation

Required Core (4 credit hours) BIO 610 Introduction to Responsible Conduct of Research in Life Sciences (1) MIC 501 Foundations in Microbiology (3)

Electives or Research (68 credit hours)

Culminating Experience (12 credit hours) MIC 799 Dissertation (12)

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's or master's degree in the biological sciences, biochemistry or a closely related field from a regionally accredited institution.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

Applicants must submit the following:

  • graduate admission application and application fee
  • official transcripts
  • academic record form
  • personal statement
  • curriculum vitae or resume
  • three letters of recommendation
  • proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of their current residency.

Prior research experience is a desired qualification for admission.

Program learning outcomes identify what a student will learn or be able to do upon completion of their program. This program has the following program outcomes:

  • Able to review the scholarly literature associated with research questions in microbiology.
  • Able to design and execute a research plan in an area of microbiology under advisement of their mentors.
  • Able to communicate science effectively, both orally and in writing.

Graduates of this program's intense and interactive educational and research training are prepared for advanced careers in research and education, specifically in bacteriology, virology, mycology, immunology and oncology.

Career possibilities are diverse, with opportunities in academic organizations, research and development industries, government service and other professional organizations. Examples include:

  • instructors in universities and colleges
  • principal investigators in government labs and nonprofit organizations
  • professors in universities and colleges
  • research associates in universities
  • research scientists in industry

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Integrated Biomedical Sciences (IBS)

Microbiology & immunology phd program.

The PhD in Microbiology and Immunology prepares graduates to become independent scientists in areas of GW faculty expertise, which include the study of host-pathogen relationships, inflammation, vaccine development, T lymphocyte activation, cancer immunology, molecular parasitology, molecular retrovirology (HIV/AIDS), and microbial genomics and proteomics.

GW is a proud partner in the  DC Center for AIDS Research  (DC CFAR) aimed at ending the HIV epidemic, and PhD students can pursue training and symposia from a number of experts in HIV research. Outstanding research programs also include the  Research Center for Neglected Diseases of Poverty , which aims to mitigate the burden of human disease in developing nations. Students have access to the  Cell Enhancement and Technologies for Immunotherapy  (CETI) lab, a state-of-the-art  GW Biorepository  resource to facilitate research on HIV/AIDS and cancer, as well as cutting-edge university core facilities for flow cytometry, imaging, and computational biology.

The GW Training Program in HIV Persistence, Co-Morbidities and Therapeutics (supported by NIH T32 AI 158105) is a prestigious program to prepare doctoral students with the knowledge, analytic and leadership skills to become successful future HIV research investigators. Research is focused on 1) cure research including T cell therapy and reversal of viral latency, 2) co-morbidities including malignances and CNS disease and 3) prevention research including vaccines and novel therapeutics. Students apply for this program at the end of their first year, with their mentor and HIV related research.

The PhD in Microbiology and Immunology begins with the interdisciplinary coursework in molecular, cellular, and systems biology and research rotations offered through  GW’s Integrated Biomedical Sciences curriculum . In the second and third semester students add a comprehensive introduction to the conceptual and experimental underpinnings of microbiology and immunology. Further electives, career development coursework in scientific writing, oral communication, and research ethics and laboratory rotations are provided. Following required laboratory rotations, students complete a. grant-style qualifier and then work with their research advisor and the Graduate Program Directors to complete remaining Microbiology and Immunology degree requirements, including the research dissertation.

Microbiology and Immunology Courses:

MICR 8210: Infection and Immunity MICR 8230: Molecular and Cellular Immunology MICR 8270: Advanced Topics in Immunology MICR 8271: Basics of HIV Persistence, Comorbidities and Treatment MICR 8998: Advanced Reading and Research Seminar Course MICR 8999: Dissertation Research

Some Suggested Electives:

PUBH 6276: Public Health Microbiology MICR 6292: Tropical Infectious Disease ANAT 6182: Fundamentals of Regenerative Biology and Systems Physiology

Courses in genomics, cancer biology, neuroscience, and pharmacology are also available.

Seminars/Journal Clubs:

MITM Seminar series is once a month on Thursday at noon.  CFAR seminars and events are posted .

Examples of Recent Microbiology & Immunology PhD Dissertations:

Indra Sarabia, PhD 2021 “In vitro tools to study the establishment of HIV-1 latency and evaluate latency revising agents for HIV-1 cure strategies” Mentor: Alberto Bosque. F31 awardee. (Now Scientist-Biosassay at BioLegend, San Diego, CA)

Allison Powell, PhD 2021 “Genetically modified immune cells secreting broadly neutralizing antibodies against HIV: restoration of systemic immunity” Mentors: Russell Cruz, David Leitenberg. (Now Scientist at TCR2 Therapeutics, Washington DC)

Graduate Program Directors:

Alberto Bosque, PhD, MBA Associate Professor of Microbiology, Immunology, & Tropical Medicine Ross Hall 617 [email protected]

David Leitenberg, MD, PhD Associate Professor of Microbiology, Immunology & Tropical Medicine; Pediatrics and Pathology Ross Hall 621 [email protected]

How to apply  to the IBS and Microbiology and Immunology PhD program

For IBS Application Questions contact  Colleen Kennedy, IBS Program Manager  at [email protected]

Graduate Program

The Microbiology Graduate PhD Program is an MIT-wide program that is designed to provide students with broad exposure to modern areas of microbiology and depth in the chosen area of thesis work.

There are more than 50 faculty in 10 different departments and divisions that study microbes. Graduate students admitted to the program will join a vibrant, thriving microbiology community on the MIT campus and will receive training in a broad range of areas in microbiology.

The major components of the training program are described in in this section, along with information on life as a graduate student at MIT.

“Is the MIT Microbiology Graduate Program the right program for me?”

This is a question we often hear, especially if applicants are considering or applying to other departments within MIT.  As you can see from our website, we have over 60 faculty from over 10 different departments participating in the Microbiology Graduate Program.

One way to help you decide where best to apply is for you to determine whether all, or almost all, of the faculty in whose research you are interested are in one department.  If that is the case, applying to that individual department would be more appropriate.  If you are equally interested in faculty and labs from different departments, then a program like MIT Microbiology can provide you the flexibility to bridge different departments and disciplines, both in your coursework and your research.

  • Microbiology

The Graduate Program in Microbiology is a multidepartmental, interdisciplinary Ph.D. program in training and research in the study of microorganisms and their effects on their hosts. The faculty of the program share the view that understanding the biology of microorganisms requires a multidisciplinary approach; therefore, the Microbiology graduate program emphasizes the need for strong multidisciplinary training. The program is designed to provide individualized education in modern microbiology and to prepare students for independent careers in research and teaching. Students can specialize in various areas, including bacteriology, virology, microbe-host interactions, microbial pathogenesis, cell biology and immunobiology of microbial infections, microbial genetics and physiology, structural biology, parasitology, microbiome, and microbial ecology and evolution.

  • Programs of Study
  • PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
  • Department of Microbial Pathogenesis

Director of Graduate Studies

Jennifer Atchley

Departmental Registrar (on leave February - August 2024)

Marneshia Bullock

Departmental Registrar (Temporary, February - August 2024)

Admission Requirements

Standardized testing requirements.

GRE is not accepted.

English Language Requirement

TOEFL iBT or IELTS Academic is required of most applicants whose native language is not English. BBS requires a score of at least 600 on the paper version, 250 on the computer-based exam, and 100 on the internet-based exam. Please take the test no later than November and no earlier than 24 months prior to submitting your application. Use institution code 3987 when reporting your scores; you may enter any department code.

You may be exempt from this requirement if you have received (or will receive) an undergraduate degree from a college or university where English is the primary language of instruction, and if you have studied in residence at that institution for at least three years.

Admission Information

Microbiology participates in the Combined Program in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences (BBS) , and applicants interested in pursuing a degree in cell biology should apply to the Microbiology Track within BBS.

Academic Information

Program Advising Guidelines

GSAS Advising Guidelines

Academic Resources

Academic calendar.

The Graduate School's academic calendar lists important dates and deadlines related to coursework, registration, financial processes, and milestone events such as graduation.

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Registration Information and Dates

https://registration.yale.edu/

Students must register every term in which they are enrolled in the Graduate School. Registration for a given term takes place the semester prior, and so it's important to stay on top of your academic plan. The University Registrar's Office oversees the systems that students use to register. Instructions about how to use those systems and the dates during which registration occurs can be found on their registration website.

Financial Information

Phd stipend & funding.

PhD students at Yale are normally full-funded for a minimum of five years. During that time, our students receive a twelve-month stipend to cover living expenses and a fellowship that covers the full cost of tuition and student healthcare.

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Below you will find alumni placement data for our departments and programs.

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Ph.D. in Microbiology

  • M.S. in Microbiology
  • Master’s of Microbiology (M.M.)
  • Master of Microbial Biotechnology (M.M.B.)
  • Graduate Minor in Microbiology
  • Research Areas
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find a phd microbiology

The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) is the highest degree offered by the Microbiology Graduate Program (MGP). The goal of our doctoral program is to provide students with the foundation necessary to pursue a career in a university, industry or research institute setting.

Students in our doctoral program are trained to recognize significant biological problems, design experimental approaches for solving these problems and communicate their results to the scientific community and the public.

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find a phd microbiology

The requirements listed below are the minimum requirements to be met by all students in our Ph.D. program. A student’s advisory committee may recommend additional requirements as deemed appropriate, based on a student’s background and research plans.

Curriculum and Courses

The Microbiology Graduate Programs at NC State are interdisciplinary. Our Ph.D. students take many courses taught by MGP faculty, as well as elective courses offered in numerous disciplines and departments across campus, including Biochemistry , Biotechnology , Animal Science , Food Science and Genetics . Our Ph.D. curriculum allows for flexibility Doctoral students will have completed at least 72 credits by the end of their fourth year in the program.

All microbiology graduate students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. The Graduate Student Support Plan (GSSP; tuition and health benefits) also requires continuous enrollment, meaning all graduate students must enroll for a minimum of nine credits in each Fall and Spring semester to qualify. After the first year, most of these are Research credits.

Required Course Credits for a Ph.D. in Microbiology

Required courses.

As listed above, students are required to register for the following:

MB 500s-700s – Microbiology Courses

Students are required to take 12 graduate-level, letter-graded microbiology (MB) credits. Courses are 3 credits each.

MGP students are able to take courses that focus on the various specialized disciplines of microbiology, including bacterial physiology, environmental microbiology, immunology, molecular genetics and virology. Prior experience can impact which courses a student can enroll in.

Prerequisites in biochemistry are required for many of these courses, so we recommend that all microbiology graduate students have the equivalent of introductory biochemistry ( BCH 553 ) at NC State early in the curriculum.

An example of courses that fit into two of many different microbiology “tracks” or concentrations:

Mb 870 – laboratory research rotations.

Doctoral students supported by a teaching or research assistantship are required to participate in a minimum of two research rotations , allowing them to experience the types of research performed in MGP faculty member’s laboratories and choose a research area of high interest to them. An additional rotation is possible, with approval from the Director of Graduate Programs (DGP) and the respective faculty.

Research rotations take place each year from July through the end of the Fall semester. Students earn 1 credit (MB 870) for both laboratory rotations, and their performance is formally evaluated by the principal investigator of the laboratory. Students must also provide a written or oral report about their rotation experience. Following their last research rotation, students may choose a laboratory for their dissertation research.

Although doctoral students supported by a stipend funded from a faculty grant or other source are not required to participate in the research rotations, they may choose to do so with approval from the principal investigators. We encourage all students to review MGP  faculty pages and meet with faculty before deciding upon a specific lab for their rotation.

MB 886 – Teaching Experience

A minimum teaching responsibility is part of the requirements for a Ph.D. degree in Microbiology from NC State. Students must serve as a laboratory teaching assistant for at least one semester in an NCSU on-campus course. Prior teaching experience in an M.S. program will be considered to fulfill this requirement. One credit of MB 886 is provided for each semester the student teaches.

The teaching requirement should be fulfilled at the earliest possible time in the graduate program. Example courses approved for fulfilling the teaching requirement are: MB 352, MB 412, MB 452 and BIO 181. Specific tools for enhancing teaching effectiveness are provided for teaching assistants, including workshops and constructive evaluation by the instructor and the students.

MB 801 – Seminar in Microbiology

The MGP requires all graduate students to attend Microbiology seminars throughout their degree program. All Ph.D. students must register for at least two semesters (two credits) of seminar.

MB 893/895 – Microbiology Research

MB 893 and MB 895 provide credit for research students perform in our Ph.D. program.  Students register for MB 893 prior to passing their Preliminary Exam , after which they may sign-up for a variable number of MB 895 credits each semester. A minimum of six credits is required for the Ph.D. degree. However, this is a research-intensive degree, so many credits will end up being for research (MB 895 Microbiology Research).

Other Professional Development

All our graduate students are required to attend either the Microbiology course in Professional Development and Responsible Conduct of Research, or a similar module offered in related programs (BIT, GN, etc.). One credit hour is required.

Elective Graduate Courses

Doctoral students can choose to take other courses offered by departments and programs throughout NC State (Biochemistry, Genetics, Statistics, etc.). Selection of elective courses is done by the student, in consultation with and approval by the advisory committee. Letter graded or satisfactory/unsatisfactory course formats can be used.

Below are examples of elective courses available. The graduate catalog  should be consulted for the current comprehensive listing.

  • BAE 525 – Industrial Microbiology & Bioprocessing
  • BCH 553 – Biochemistry of Gene Expression
  • BCH 701 – Macromolecular Structure
  • BCH 703 – Macromolecular Synthesis and Regulation
  • BCH 705 – Molecular Biology of the Cell
  • BIT 510 – Core Technologies in Biotechnology
  • BIT 595X  – Advanced Modules in Biotechnology
  • GN 513 – Advanced Genetics
  • GN 701 – Molecular Genetics
  • GN 735 – Functional Genomics
  • GN 850  – Professionalism and Ethics
  • MB(PP) 730  – Fungal Genetics and Physiology
  • MB 610  – Special Topics in Microbiology
  • MB 620  – Special Problems
  • MB 801  – Seminar in Microbiology
  • MB 705  – Biological Scanning Electron Microscopy
  • MB(IMM) 783 – Advanced Immunology
  • MB 790I  – Practical Digital Imaging

Advisory Committees

Doctoral students are required to select a dissertation advisor before the end of their second semester (until then, the Director of Graduate Programs (DGP) serves as a temporary advisor). By the end of their first year, each student must also have selected a graduate advisory committee with the help of their dissertation advisor. Advisory committee’s will consist of a student’s dissertation advisor, at least two additional faculty members from the MGP and one faculty member who holds a graduate faculty appointment in another program.

All required committee members must hold appointments within the Graduate School at NC State. Students may select scientists who are not members of the Graduate School faculty (e.g., adjunct faculty, industry scientists) for their committee, but it is in addition to the required members. Graduate advisory committees must meet no less than once a year.

Graduate Plan of Work (PoW)

A Graduate Plan of Work (PoW) will include all courses, a tentative dissertation title and an anticipated timetable for taking each course. Students and their dissertation advisors will informally outline the PoW as soon as possible. The plan will be submitted for approval to and/or amendment by the student’s advisory committee. Then the PoW will be formally submitted to the graduate school by the end of the student’s third semester at NC State.

Visit the Graduate School website for more information about the graduate PoW .

Annual Research Progress Reports

The MGP will facilitate scheduling an annual meeting of the student’s advisory committee, at which the student will make an oral presentation and submit a written report on their laboratory research. A Graduate Student Progress Evaluation Form will be completed by the advisory committee. A satisfactory evaluation will be necessary for the student to receive assistantship support and/or be able to register for the next semester.

Dissertation and Defense

All Ph.D. students must write a dissertation on their research and this must conform to the regulations laid down in the NCSU “Thesis and Dissertation Guide.” The content and structure of the dissertation must be approved by the advisory committee, and all degree candidates are expected to prepare their research results for publication prior to completing their program. Doctoral candidates who have completed their research and other degree requirements (72 credit hours) may enroll in MB 899 (Dissertation Preparation) while they are writing their dissertation. All Ph.D. candidates must also present a seminar hosted by the MGP prior to defending their dissertation. Subject to the satisfactory defense of the Ph.D. dissertation, the advisory committee will approve it for transmittal to the Graduate School.

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Explore our course offerings and microbiology course descriptions 

Review our admission requirements and apply now! 

Discover some of the helpful resources available to MGP students 

Fill out our interest form and we will be in touch! 

Microbiology PhD Graduate Programs

Researching microbiology phd graduate programs.

The Program in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics provides training in the study of microorganisms, including bacteria, parasites, and viruses, as well as in the use of microbial models to investigate basic problems in molecular genetics. The program is designed for students interested in either academic careers in teaching and research or those interested in careers in related aspects of medicine and industry. Research training is offered in microbial genetics and physiology, microbial development, microbial pathogenesis, molecular biology of bacterial, parasitic, and viral pathogens, vaccine and therapeutic development, molecular biology of DNA replication, recombination and transposition, and the structural biology of microorganisms.

Find out more about the Bacteriology , Parasitology , Virology Research Sections.

Educational and Research Opportunities

The graduate experience in the Microbiology and Molecular Genetics Program (MMG) begins with an introduction to the faculty, current students, and their research through a series of short talks, discussions, and a poster session. The students then choose the first of three research rotations which are designed to give the student exposure to various research areas and techniques before choosing a direction and laboratory for their thesis research. In the first and second years, students also participate in courses which prepare them for analyzing, critiquing, and presenting research in the areas of bacterial genetics, biochemistry, microbial pathogenesis, molecular genetics in eukaryotic and prokaryotic systems, immunology, and molecular mechanisms for DNA rearrangements and gene regulation.

MMG graduate students are afforded the opportunity to teach for one semester in their second year; all students are prepared for this experience by attending a symposium on teaching strategies, techniques, and ethics. Journal clubs, seminars, and attending international meetings contribute to the graduate educational experience. Students usually complete their graduate work in four to five years and then move on to excellent postdoctoral positions enroute to academic, industry, and government research positions.

Research Environment

The research environment in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics is strongly interactive among different laboratories. There is Core support from the University for key technologies, including protein analysis, bioinformatics, and molecular modeling, electron and confocal microscopy, and a transgenic mouse facility. An NIH Training Grant has been awarded to us to train pre-and post-doctoral students in Molecular Mechanisms of Microbial Pathogenesis.

The research groups in the MMG Program are supportive of one another and students in the Program profit from the advice of faculty and postdoctoral associates in many different laboratories. Because the Program is Interdepartmental, it benefits from faculty with different backgrounds and the research labs are located at the main University campus, the Vaccine Center on the nearby Emory National Primate Research Center, the Veterans Administration Hospital facility, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). All buildings are within a 15-minute walk of each other and are connected by shuttle bus service.

find a phd microbiology

Campus Life

Located just 15 minutes from downtown Atlanta in the tree-lined suburban neighborhood of Druid Hills, Emory University is positioned along the Clifton Corridor, which also includes the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Cancer Society.

Emory University is home to nine major academic divisions, numerous centers for advanced study, and a host of prestigious affiliated institutions. In addition to Emory College, the University encompasses a graduate school of arts and sciences; professional schools of medicine, theology, law, nursing, public health, and business; and Oxford College, a two-year undergraduate division on the original campus of Emory in Oxford, Ga.

Emory was founded at Oxford by the Methodist Church in 1836. The University has 11,300 students and 2,500 faculty members who represent all regions of the United States and more than 100 foreign nations.

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Microbiology (PhD)

Ohio State offers training in virtually every aspect of modern microbiology. Our PhD program in microbiology offers an individualized approach to graduate study in one of the nation's largest teaching and research institutions. You will actively participate in planning your graduate program while working with colleagues from around the world.

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PHD, Microbiology

Programs of study leading to a Ph.D. degree are offered in different fields of microbiology including genetics, ecology, pathogenesis, cell biology, physiology, anaerobic microbiology, biotechnology and bioinformatics.

Degree Type: Doctoral

Degree Program Code: PHD_MIBO

Degree Program Summary:

Students with a B.S. degree may apply directly to the Ph.D. program. Programs of study leading to a Ph.D. degree are offered in different fields of microbiology including genetics, molecular biology, cell biology, ecology, microbial pathogenesis, vaccine development, physiology, anaerobic microbiology, biotechnology and bioinformatics. Faculty interests are diverse, including marine science, prokaryotic biology, fungal biology, parasitology, and biochemistry, here .

Our PhD students are admitted through the Integrated Life Sciences Department (ILS) and choose their research/thesis advisors after completing three research rotations in different laboratories. Please check the following website for more information about admission through ILS, here.

Graduate students pursuing PhD in the Department of Microbiology are guaranteed support by assistantships or fellowships while enrolled in the program. In addition, a tuition waiver is granted for graduate students on any kind of fellowship or assistantship. Prospective students will be considered automatically for any Graduate School, Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, or departmental assistantships for which they are eligible. Ph.D. candidates are also qualified to apply for the departmental or the university fellowships.

There is a connecting thread to all the research in the Microbiology Graduate Program: the study of diverse microorganisms from the molecular level to the organismal and community levels in order to develop a complete picture of the role of microbial life in our biosphere. Since its formation in 1953, the Department of Microbiology has enjoyed sustained growth and developed an international reputation in prokaryotic biology and fungal biology. Our faculty participate in several interdepartmental and multi-institutional research programs, including the Biomedical and Health Sciences Institute, the Center for Tropical and Emerging Global Diseases, the Complex Carbohydrate Research Center, the UGA Interdisciplinary Fungal Biology Group, and the Institute of Bioinformatics. Research in the department is well supported by external funding from the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Energy, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and a number of private foundations and corporations.

Degree requirements include the successful completion of course work and comprehensive exams, and submission of a thesis or dissertation consisting of original, scholarly research in the field of microbiology. Teaching experience is vital to careers in science, so we require all graduate students in our program to teach a minimum of at least one course while in our program. We also require an additional in-depth professional development activity, such as a second semester of teaching, a professional internship, or participation in an outside summer course or intensive workshop.  We take great pride in our graduate instructors and provide the necessary mentoring in instructional skills. The University and the department also honor outstanding teaching assistants with various awards. The Ph.D. program is generally completed in five to six years. The program of study is designed by the student and their advisory committee to provide a broad foundation in microbiology, preparing the student for a career in research and/or teaching in academia, industry, or the government.

Office Location: Biological Sciences Building Athens, GA 30602-2605

Locations Offered:

Athens (Main Campus)

College / School:

Franklin College of Arts & Sciences

346 Brooks Hall Athens, GA 30602

706-542-8776

Department:

Microbiology

Graduate Coordinator(s):

Elizabeth Ottesen

Phone Number:

706-542-9582

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find a phd microbiology

Department of Microbiology

Pursue a PhD in Microbiology

Microbes are the dominant organisms on the planet and drive all aspects of life. The Department of Microbiology is a close-knit group of creative, bold, and passionate scientists who are addressing some of the toughest challenges facing our world through discoveries in bacterial and archaeal biology and physiology, bacterial and viral pathogenesis, antibiotic discovery, and microbial ecology and evolution. We are a collaborative, supportive, and active community with many opportunities for connecting with other scholars in the department, school, and across campus.

With a PhD in Microbiology, you can launch a career in academia, industry, or government.   Our graduates can be found around the world, leading research programs at companies such as Abbvie and Eli Lilly and directing labs at top universities, research institutes, and government agencies.

Request information   Program overview   Apply   Current PhD students

Microbiology PhD student with a pipette

Title Hear more from our students

Stefanie Eben, a PhD candidate in the Department of Microbiology, shares how she fell in love with microbiology and how her graduate studies at UIUC have offered the perfect mixture of academic and personal fulfillment.

The PhD Program

Graduate degrees are earned through a combination of graded courses, oral and written examinations, and independent research. We empower students to design a program, in consultation with their advisors, that aligns with their academic background and scientific (or career) goals. Because the department is part of an umbrella PhD program in MCB, students admitted into any of these departmental graduate programs can select faculty thesis advisors from over 65 research laboratories in the school. Close ties are also maintained with the School of Integrative Biology, the School of Chemical Sciences, the Carle Illinois College of Medicine, the College of Veterinary Medicine, and the Microbial Systems Initiative.

Our department provides a comprehensive training program in microbiology and molecular biology. During your first semester, you will take two core courses designed to provide a strong background in cell physiology, biochemistry (MCB 501), and genetics (MCB 502). Subsequent course work is selected to complement your interests and area of research.

First-year students rotate through three research labs to become acquainted with several labs and to learn new experimental techniques. Each rotation is five weeks long. You can choose rotation laboratories from any department in the School of MCB. Near the end of the fall semester, you will choose a research advisor, and together propose a research project that forms the basis of a dissertation.

In the spring semester of the first year, you will write a short, NIH-style grant proposal on the proposed project and describe it to a faculty committee. The committee makes suggestions regarding project strategy and may recommend areas of basic knowledge that should be explored in greater depth to enhance your success on the project and in the preliminary exam.

At the end of the second year, you will take an oral preliminary exam to test your scientific knowledge and ability to solve research problems. After passing the preliminary exam, you will concentrate on research. It takes approximately five years to complete the PhD program.

Degree requirements ​​​​​  Departmental handbook   Courses

Financial Support

All students admitted to the Ph D program receive financial support throughout their graduate training. Support includes a tuition waiver and a stipend. After the first semester, graduate students are supported by research assistantships, training grants, or teaching assistantships. Graduate students are required to pay the university health fee to cover insurance and health benefits.

The Department of Microbiology is located in the state-of-the-art Chemical and Life Sciences Laboratories (CLSL). Central to main campus, the CLSL houses all of the major equipment and expertise necessary for research in microbiology, cell biology, molecular biology, and biochemistry. Both the School of MCB and campus house a wide array of  research facilities and support services . Faculty collaborate on reseach with partners across campus.

Title Community

The Microbial Early-career Researchers Association ( microERA ), a networking and professional development group for early-career scientists at Illinois, welcomes all undergraduate, graduate students, and postdocs conducting research broadly relevant to microbiome or microbial sciences to join.

The  MCB Graduate Student Association , also known as the MCBees, organizes professional development and social activities as well as outreach events, such as Science on Tap and visits to local schools.

How to Apply

The Department of Microbiology is a part of the School of Molecular & Cellular Biology (MCB), which includes the Departments of Biochemistry, Cell & Developmental Biology, and Molecular & Integrative Physiology.

Students interested in pursuing the PhD in Microbiology should apply directly to the MCB PhD Program  and select "Microbiology" for the field of specialization in the application.

To be considered for admission, you must:

  • have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with course work in biological sciences, chemistry, and physics;
  • submit three letters of recommendation, including at least two from science professors (if research has been performed, letters of recommendation should include one from the research supervisor);

MCB PhD Programs

Shawna M. Smith, MCB Graduate Program Coordinator Lori Raetzman, Associate Director of MCB Graduate Program [email protected] ; 217-333-1737

Andrei Kuzminov, Professor of Microbiology; Director of Graduate Studies [email protected]

James M. Slauch, Professor and Department Head [email protected] ; 217-244-1956

Diane L. Tsevelekos, Office Support Specialist [email protected] ; 217-333-1736

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From microbiology major to MIT

Xianyi Xiong

Xianyi Xiong is no stranger to CBS. Now a researcher in the Harcombe lab, he got his undergraduate degree in microbiology from the College in 2020 and later finished his M.S. in Microbial Engineering in 2022. After two years conducting research on campus, he looks to take his interests in the microbiome to MIT through its Microbiology Ph.D. program. 

What drew you to your role in the Harcombe lab? I started the position immediately after I graduated from a M.S. program in Microbial Engineering also in Dr. Harcombe's group. I decided to stay because I want to continue my previous research exploring single-cell approaches and systems biology/modeling approaches to study how bacteria withstand perturbations.

What graduate program are you planning to pursue? What interests you in that area of study? I originally applied to the Gates Cambridge Scholarship because I was drawn to the vibrant Gates Scholars community and the Ph.D. program in Biological Science (MRC Toxicology) at the University of Cambridge where researchers from all sorts of areas can benefit from interdisciplinary discussions. Unfortunately, I eventually decided to decline the Gates Cambridge Scholarship opportunity and the Ph.D. program offer at University of Cambridge due to family issues.  Com g Instead, I decided to accept my offer to join MIT's Microbiology Ph.D. program. I wish to continue studying the systems biology and microbial ecology of host-microbiome interactions, continuing to use computational and high-throughput experimental approaches to decipher how to engineer the human microbiome to improve health.

What are some of the things you've learned both as a student and on staff at the U of M that will help you in your graduate work? The most important lesson I learned at the U of MN is that being a leader means to build psychological safety in people I work with to help them charge into the unknown and make meaning out of it. As a first-generation international student from China tapping into a different country and culture, I was very lucky in that many of my mentors really did an amazing job encouraging me to pursue my dreams and supporting what I do. 

Longer-term, what are you hoping to do with your work after completing your graduate program? I wish to pursue a professorship to continue performing scientific research about the human-associated microbiome, and spin off companies commercializing discoveries from my research group. I am interested in dedicating my life to this area because I believe that within it hides great potential for improving human health, as well as understanding how we evolve as a species. 

Anything else you'd like to share? I would like to use this opportunity to thank my faculty mentors over the many years I've been here and I cannot achieve anything without them. They are the beacons of light to a first-generation college student from a different country and language background. I would like to specifically thank my wife, Haining Zhou, and my mentors Drs. Will Harcombe, Kirsten Jamsen, Hans Othmer, Abby Johnson, Christopher Staley, Jasmine Tang, Katie Levin and Mike Sadowsky.

123 Snyder Hall 1475 Gortner Ave St. Paul , MN 55108

3-104 MCB 420 Washington Ave. S.E. Minneapolis , MN 55455 United States

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find a phd microbiology

Global Accessibility Awareness Day: Becky Thomas

Posted on May 16, 2024   by Microbiology Society

Celebrated annually on the third Thursday of May, Global Accessibility Awareness Day aims to bring awareness to the importance of having conversations about accessibility and highlights the need for inclusive experiences that are accessible to everyone and inclusive for Disabled people. This year, Society member Becky Thomas shares her experiences and insights from attending the Society’s Annual Conference, coupled with the Disabled and Neurodivergent Members Social.

Conferences are full of hustle and bustle, with lots of exciting activities, stalls and people to talk to! However, for me and many others, this also comes with a range of hidden challenges. I’m Becky (she/her), a second year PhD student studying microbiology and antimicrobial resistance at the University of Surrey School of Veterinary Medicine. I had the privilege of receiving my autism diagnosis in September 2022, and have since discovered I also have a chronic illness known as endometriosis. Since then, I have been learning how to navigate my life with this new-found perspective on how I experience the world. Conferences can be a mentally draining experience for anyone, but in particular, as a Disabled individual, I really struggle to keep up with the pace and environment of conferences. Accessibility may be something that a lot of people don’t think about going into a conference if it doesn’t impact them directly, but for myself and many other Disabled individuals, accessibility aids make the difference between a positive or negative experience. I can’t talk about other individuals’ experiences with their disabilities at a conference, so I’ll refer to my own personal lived experience.

This year was my second time attending a Microbiology Society Annual Conference and I was really excited to visit Edinburgh. However, for me, conferences require a lot of pre-planning and mental preparation, so I was nervous. I find the busyness, the noise, the bright lights and the networking at conferences very draining, which can leave me feeling burnt out by the end of the day. Following a rather stressful and overstimulating experience last year, I reached out ahead of the Conference this year to request accessibility information for the things I struggled with last year. I asked about the  floor plan, the availability of a quiet room and the food options. I found this year’s Conference much more inclusive and accessible. For example, I was able to access a spacious lift each time I needed to navigate the multiple floor levels; the food was spread across two rooms, which decreased the footfall in one area; there was a lot more space to sit down and more tables to stand around at lunchtime. This also made it much easier to walk around the exhibition and partake in some of the games that the exhibitors had on offer too (which I was really lucky with this year!).

Asking for the food options in advance really helped to reduce unnecessary anxiety and know exactly what to expect, as well as pre-plan each day. This is particularly important for me because I can struggle with health flare-ups dependent on what I eat, as well as suffering from anxiety around food and  having set ‘safe’ foods that will always leave my gut feeling happy. I do, however, think there is room for improvement to ensure the food options meet all dietary requirements.

The Microbiology Society enabled me to pre-plan my conference experience with the extensive itinerary they provide both on their website and app. For conferences, I plan my trip exactly in terms of the talks, activities and posters I want to attend. The itinerary allows me to know what to expect from the Conference and plan where I should be at specific times to minimise stress and maximise what I can take part in. Their app is great too, in terms of being able to access any unavoidable last-minute changes and save or ‘favourite’ talks and posters I want to attend.

I personally choose to wear a sunflower lanyard whenever I attend events like conferences because it acts as a communication aid. For those who may not be aware, the sunflower lanyard is used to indicate a hidden disability where the individual may require additional assistance. Often, the lanyard will have a card attached with relevant information on the disability or how to assist the individual, should it be required. My sunflower lanyard , in combination with an available quiet room, is essential for me because I can get quite overwhelmed in these social situations and go into what is referred to as a meltdown. For me, this presents almost like a panic attack; I get dizzy, flustered and very emotional, coupled with the loss of ability to speak and to voice what the issue is (often I can’t actually identify the specific issue anyway). Other times I can shut down, which feels like losing social battery mid-conversation and not being able to contribute any longer. Therefore, my lanyard can help me communicate with others, such as staff, when I feel unable to support myself. It is also so important that there is a quiet room available because it gives me a place to remove myself from an overwhelming situation or before I get too overstimulated by the environment.

With these things in mind, you can only imagine my excitement at finding out that the Society was supporting a group of members in holding their first ever Disabled and Neurodivergent Members Social! This was amazing to see in the Society’s social line-up because it presented me with an opportunity to meet others in similar positions to myself, specifically in the world of science! This social was for anyone who self-identified as Neurodivergent or Disabled.

The organisers of the social implemented a ‘no diagnosis’ rule, which I loved! I’m a huge believer in self-diagnosis because I feel it is the initial step in being able to seek a diagnosis, should the individual want one, but more importantly, learn how to implement adjustments into your life or get the appropriate support. A private venue was hired out, and the organisers did a group walkover together. I was so glad there was a group walkover, as I felt very nervous about going, and the walk together removed the stress of getting myself to the venue! I actually might not have gone if that initial outreach hadn’t been available.

The social was great; it was an amazing chance to talk to others in the science field and discuss our lives and interests. It was welcoming and had a safe atmosphere for us to share our challenges with one another. Fidget toys, a quiet room, craft activities and board games were available, which I don’t think any of us actually ended up using, but it was a relief to know they were available and could help take the pressure off conversations if needed.

A selection of food and drink was provided, which had a range of foods to try to cater to all dietary needs. My favourites were the chips, cake and juice. I did, however, have reservations about some of the food because of my anxiety and need for control when it comes to food. Options were available, such as sandwiches, salad and quinoa, however, I would have preferred to have labels with the contents of the sandwiches and quinoa available. Due to some of us being picky eaters, I think it would have been more accommodating to separate the quinoa and the extra contents, like the vegetables, into different bowls so that the individual could add what they wanted or have eaten plain quinoa if preferred. Equally, having something similar, like  plain pasta, would have been good. Despite this, I was so pleased the Microbiology Society had provided this buffet, as it was welcoming and provided an outlet to assist people in conversation.

The highlight of the social for me was making new friends who I could follow on different social media platforms and continue to connect with over the remaining days at the Conference – now being a friendly, familiar face to one another.

Events like this are important to create an accessible environment where everyone can network with others to expand their knowledge and connections in their field. My message to my fellow Neurodivergent and Disabled members (diagnosed or not) is not to be afraid to advocate for yourselves! Reach out ahead of the Conference (which you can do via email) and ask for any information that you think will make your experience better. The Microbiology Society has an ‘accessible requirements’ section when registering; although I sent an additional follow-up, I cannot comment on the efficiency of using this section. I look forward to the Society continuing to improve accessibility at future conferences and continuing to hold socials like this year’s Disabled and Neurodivergent Members Social. I hope next year will provide another opportunity to meet more Disabled and Neurodivergent people and hopefully see some of the friends I made this year again!

To find out more about our EDI initiatives and take part in an upcoming Awareness Day, view our equality, diversity and inclusion webpages .

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The Unique Burial of a Child of Early Scythian Time at the Cemetery of Saryg-Bulun (Tuva)

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Pages:  379-406

In 1988, the Tuvan Archaeological Expedition (led by M. E. Kilunovskaya and V. A. Semenov) discovered a unique burial of the early Iron Age at Saryg-Bulun in Central Tuva. There are two burial mounds of the Aldy-Bel culture dated by 7th century BC. Within the barrows, which adjoined one another, forming a figure-of-eight, there were discovered 7 burials, from which a representative collection of artifacts was recovered. Burial 5 was the most unique, it was found in a coffin made of a larch trunk, with a tightly closed lid. Due to the preservative properties of larch and lack of air access, the coffin contained a well-preserved mummy of a child with an accompanying set of grave goods. The interred individual retained the skin on his face and had a leather headdress painted with red pigment and a coat, sewn from jerboa fur. The coat was belted with a leather belt with bronze ornaments and buckles. Besides that, a leather quiver with arrows with the shafts decorated with painted ornaments, fully preserved battle pick and a bow were buried in the coffin. Unexpectedly, the full-genomic analysis, showed that the individual was female. This fact opens a new aspect in the study of the social history of the Scythian society and perhaps brings us back to the myth of the Amazons, discussed by Herodotus. Of course, this discovery is unique in its preservation for the Scythian culture of Tuva and requires careful study and conservation.

Keywords: Tuva, Early Iron Age, early Scythian period, Aldy-Bel culture, barrow, burial in the coffin, mummy, full genome sequencing, aDNA

Information about authors: Marina Kilunovskaya (Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation). Candidate of Historical Sciences. Institute for the History of Material Culture of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Dvortsovaya Emb., 18, Saint Petersburg, 191186, Russian Federation E-mail: [email protected] Vladimir Semenov (Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation). Candidate of Historical Sciences. Institute for the History of Material Culture of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Dvortsovaya Emb., 18, Saint Petersburg, 191186, Russian Federation E-mail: [email protected] Varvara Busova  (Moscow, Russian Federation).  (Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation). Institute for the History of Material Culture of the Russian Academy of Sciences.  Dvortsovaya Emb., 18, Saint Petersburg, 191186, Russian Federation E-mail:  [email protected] Kharis Mustafin  (Moscow, Russian Federation). Candidate of Technical Sciences. Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology.  Institutsky Lane, 9, Dolgoprudny, 141701, Moscow Oblast, Russian Federation E-mail:  [email protected] Irina Alborova  (Moscow, Russian Federation). Candidate of Biological Sciences. Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology.  Institutsky Lane, 9, Dolgoprudny, 141701, Moscow Oblast, Russian Federation E-mail:  [email protected] Alina Matzvai  (Moscow, Russian Federation). Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology.  Institutsky Lane, 9, Dolgoprudny, 141701, Moscow Oblast, Russian Federation E-mail:  [email protected]

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Out of the Centre

Savvino-storozhevsky monastery and museum.

Savvino-Storozhevsky Monastery and Museum

Zvenigorod's most famous sight is the Savvino-Storozhevsky Monastery, which was founded in 1398 by the monk Savva from the Troitse-Sergieva Lavra, at the invitation and with the support of Prince Yury Dmitrievich of Zvenigorod. Savva was later canonised as St Sabbas (Savva) of Storozhev. The monastery late flourished under the reign of Tsar Alexis, who chose the monastery as his family church and often went on pilgrimage there and made lots of donations to it. Most of the monastery’s buildings date from this time. The monastery is heavily fortified with thick walls and six towers, the most impressive of which is the Krasny Tower which also serves as the eastern entrance. The monastery was closed in 1918 and only reopened in 1995. In 1998 Patriarch Alexius II took part in a service to return the relics of St Sabbas to the monastery. Today the monastery has the status of a stauropegic monastery, which is second in status to a lavra. In addition to being a working monastery, it also holds the Zvenigorod Historical, Architectural and Art Museum.

Belfry and Neighbouring Churches

find a phd microbiology

Located near the main entrance is the monastery's belfry which is perhaps the calling card of the monastery due to its uniqueness. It was built in the 1650s and the St Sergius of Radonezh’s Church was opened on the middle tier in the mid-17th century, although it was originally dedicated to the Trinity. The belfry's 35-tonne Great Bladgovestny Bell fell in 1941 and was only restored and returned in 2003. Attached to the belfry is a large refectory and the Transfiguration Church, both of which were built on the orders of Tsar Alexis in the 1650s.  

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To the left of the belfry is another, smaller, refectory which is attached to the Trinity Gate-Church, which was also constructed in the 1650s on the orders of Tsar Alexis who made it his own family church. The church is elaborately decorated with colourful trims and underneath the archway is a beautiful 19th century fresco.

Nativity of Virgin Mary Cathedral

find a phd microbiology

The Nativity of Virgin Mary Cathedral is the oldest building in the monastery and among the oldest buildings in the Moscow Region. It was built between 1404 and 1405 during the lifetime of St Sabbas and using the funds of Prince Yury of Zvenigorod. The white-stone cathedral is a standard four-pillar design with a single golden dome. After the death of St Sabbas he was interred in the cathedral and a new altar dedicated to him was added.

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Under the reign of Tsar Alexis the cathedral was decorated with frescoes by Stepan Ryazanets, some of which remain today. Tsar Alexis also presented the cathedral with a five-tier iconostasis, the top row of icons have been preserved.

Tsaritsa's Chambers

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The Nativity of Virgin Mary Cathedral is located between the Tsaritsa's Chambers of the left and the Palace of Tsar Alexis on the right. The Tsaritsa's Chambers were built in the mid-17th century for the wife of Tsar Alexey - Tsaritsa Maria Ilinichna Miloskavskaya. The design of the building is influenced by the ancient Russian architectural style. Is prettier than the Tsar's chambers opposite, being red in colour with elaborately decorated window frames and entrance.

find a phd microbiology

At present the Tsaritsa's Chambers houses the Zvenigorod Historical, Architectural and Art Museum. Among its displays is an accurate recreation of the interior of a noble lady's chambers including furniture, decorations and a decorated tiled oven, and an exhibition on the history of Zvenigorod and the monastery.

Palace of Tsar Alexis

find a phd microbiology

The Palace of Tsar Alexis was built in the 1650s and is now one of the best surviving examples of non-religious architecture of that era. It was built especially for Tsar Alexis who often visited the monastery on religious pilgrimages. Its most striking feature is its pretty row of nine chimney spouts which resemble towers.

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    Students interested in pursuing the PhD in Microbiology should apply directly to the MCB PhD Program and select "Microbiology" for the field of specialization in the application. To be considered for admission, you must: have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with course work in biological sciences, chemistry, and ...

  19. From microbiology major to MIT

    New from the College of Biological Sciences. From microbiology major to MIT. Xianyi Xiong looks toward a future in microbiome research with an impact on human health. May 13, 2024. Xianyi Xiong is no stranger to CBS. Now a researcher in the Harcombe lab, he got his undergraduate degree in microbiology from the College in 2020 and later finished ...

  20. Global Accessibility Awareness Day: Becky Thomas

    Conferences are full of hustle and bustle, with lots of exciting activities, stalls and people to talk to! However, for me and many others, this also comes with a range of hidden challenges. I'm Becky (she/her), a second year PhD student studying microbiology and antimicrobial resistance at the University of Surrey School of Veterinary Medicine.

  21. The Unique Burial of a Child of Early Scythian Time at the Cemetery of

    Burial 5 was the most unique, it was found in a coffin made of a larch trunk, with a tightly closed lid. Due to the preservative properties of larch and lack of air access, the coffin contained a well-preserved mummy of a child with an accompanying set of grave goods. The interred individual retained the skin on his face and had a leather ...

  22. Iosifo-Volotskiy monastery in Moscow Oblast

    Find 1 memorial records at the Iosifo-Volotskiy monastery cemetery in , Moscow Oblast. Add a memorial, flowers or photo.

  23. Savvino-Storozhevsky Monastery and Museum

    Zvenigorod's most famous sight is the Savvino-Storozhevsky Monastery, which was founded in 1398 by the monk Savva from the Troitse-Sergieva Lavra, at the invitation and with the support of Prince Yury Dmitrievich of Zvenigorod. Savva was later canonised as St Sabbas (Savva) of Storozhev. The monastery late flourished under the reign of Tsar ...

  24. Elektrostal

    Elektrostal , lit: Electric and Сталь , lit: Steel) is a city in Moscow Oblast, Russia, located 58 kilometers east of Moscow. Population: 155,196 ; 146,294 ...