Page Title

Microbiology Master's

Description

Degree Options 


Thesis-based MS

The thesis-based MS requires two years of full-time study and includes a culminating thesis that describes a novel body of research completed under the supervision of a graduate faculty mentor. The research may result in one or more publications. Students who earn a thesis-based MS will be competitive for technician positions in academia or industry, or they may use their degree as a stepping stone to a doctoral program. Alternatively, students can apply their in-depth knowledge of microbiology and the process of science to career paths such as teaching, public health, medical laboratory science, science communication, or science policy. Students may also find a thesis-based MS is beneficial for in-depth knowledge of microbiology and the process of science that they can apply to other career paths such as teaching, public health, medical laboratory science, science communication, or science policy. 


Accelerated MS combined with a BS degree

Current NDSU undergraduate students may apply for admission to the accelerated Microbiology MS option, allowing them to take graduate coursework while completing their BS degree. Please see the accelerated MS page for information on how to apply for this degree option. 


Comprehensive Study-based MS

The comprehensive study-based MS emphasizes didactic coursework in microbiology and includes a creative project that culminates in a comprehensive paper.  The creation of new knowledge is limited compared to a thesis-based MS. The comprehensive study-based MS can be completed in 12 months or at a pace that is tailored to the student’s needs.  Students earning a comprehensive study-based MS will be competitive for technician positions in academia or industry. Alternatively, they can apply their in-depth knowledge of microbiology to career paths such as teaching, public health, medical laboratory science, science communication, or science policy. 

 
Widgets

Thesis-based MS degree (3+2 program and stand alone MS) 

Program Learning Outcomes 
  1. Adhere to ethical and professional standards in Microbiology, including managing individual projects, engaging with the public, and being ready for the workplace.  

  1. Display an essential foundation in knowledge in Microbiology and/or Immunology, including proficiency in a range of techniques.  

  1. Collect and document reproducible and publishable quality data through completion of experiments.  

  1. Critically analyze and write high quality technical documents. Contribute significantly (co-authorship) to scientific journal articles. 

Course and Credit Requirements  

30 credits are required in total. Students must complete one course in each of our core concept categories of Structure & Function of Cells, Microbial Systems, and Analytical Skill & Technology.  Students are encouraged to publish their thesis work. Attendance at program seminars and journal club is expected as is adherence to professional standards in microbiology. 

Students are expected to craft their plan of study (POS) based on their career goals and under advisement from their committee during their second semester.  On a case-by-case basis, students may request alternative requirements to fulfill their didactic requirements. This must be agreed upon by the student’s supervisory committee and approved by the Graduate Committee.   

Their POS (plan of study) must include:  

  • 1-3 credits of MICR 701 Intro to graduate research/rotations  

  • Minimum one class in each Core Concept Area 

  • Minimum Didactic credits: 16  

  • Minimum Microbiology credits: 9 credits   

  • 2 credits of MICR 790 – Microbiology Journal Club and Seminar 

  • 1 credit of UNIV 720 Scientific Integrity or equivalent ethics course 

  • 1 credit of MICR 793 – Annual Review 

  • Between 6 and 10 credits of MICR 798 -MS Thesis Research   

Sample Plan of Study  

Year One

Fall

Credits

MICR 701 Intro to Graduate Research with/without Rotations 

1-3 (D)

UNIV 720 Scientific Integrity (or equivalent ethics course)  

1 (D)

Required Content Knowledge Course or   

3 (D)

MICR 793 General Microbiology Inquiry (if needed)  

4 (D)

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series  

 

Total Credits

5-8

Spring

Credits

Required Content Knowledge Course 

3 (D)

Required Content Knowledge Course   

3 (D)

MICR 790 Microbiology seminar  

1

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series  

 

Begin Research Work  

 

Complete Plan of Study and Form Committee  

 

First Committee Meeting  

 

Total Credits

7

Summer

Credits

MICR 793 Individual Study                                                      

3-4

Total Credits

3-4

Second Year 

Fall

Credits

Didactic Course Requirements  

3 (D)

Didactic Course Requirements  

3 (D)

MICR 790 Microbiology Seminar  

1

MICR 893 Masters Student Portfolio  

1

Second Committee Meeting with Micr 893  

 

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series  

 

Continue Research

 

Total Credits

8

Spring

Credits

MICR 798 Thesis  

6

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series  

 

See Graduate Checklist for forms for this semester.  

 

Defend Thesis (3rd committee meeting)  

 

Total Credits

6

Total Credits                                                                                

30-32

D = Didactic

Content Knowledge:

AST = Analytical Skills and Technology

SF = Structure and Function

MS = Microbial Systems

Sample plan of Study 3+2 program 

Non-Thesis MS degree  

Program Learning Outcomes 
  1. Adhere to ethical and professional standards in Microbiology, including managing individual projects, engaging with the public, and being ready for the workplace.  

  1. Display an essential foundation in knowledge in Microbiology and/or Immunology, including proficiency in a range of techniques.  

  1. Critically analyze and write high quality technical documents. Contribute significantly (co-authorship) to scientific journal articles. 

Course and Credit Requirements  

30 credits are required in total.  Students must complete a minimum of 21 didactic credits towards this degree, including required core coursework in Structure & Function of Cells, Microbial Systems, and Analytical Skill & Technology.  Students are encouraged to write and publish their MS paper as a review article, meta-analysis, or commentary.  Attendance at program seminars and journal club is expected as is adherence to professional standards in microbiology. 

Students are expected to craft their plan of study (POS) based on their career goals and under advisement from their committee during their second semester.  On a case-by-case basis, students may request alternative requirements to fulfill their didactic requirements. This must be agreed upon by the student’s supervisory committee and approved by the Graduate Committee. 

Their POS (plan of study) must include:  

  • 1 credit of MICR 701 Intro to graduate research 

  • Minimum Didactic credits: 21  

  • Minimum Microbiology credits: 9 credits   

  • 1 credit of MICR 790 – Microbiology Journal Club and Seminar 

  • 1 credit of UNIV 720 Scientific Integrity or equivalent ethics course 

  • 1 credit of MICR 793 – Annual Review 

  • 2 MICR 797 -MS Paper 

Sample Plan of Study - One Year

First Year

Fall

Credits

MICR 701 Intro to Graduate Research  

1

Structure and Function Requirement 

3

MICR 793 General Microbiology Inquiry (if needed)

4

Didactic Course Requirements 

3

Didactic Course Requirements 

3

UNIV 720 Scientific Integrity (or equivalent ethics course) 

1

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series 

 

Complete Plan of Study 

 

Total Credits

15

Spring

Credits

Microbial Systems Requirement 

3

Analytical Skills and Tech Requirement 

3

MICR 790 Microbiology seminar 

1

Didactic Course Requirements 

3

Didactic Course Requirements 

3

MICR 793 Individual Study 

1-2

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series 

 

See Graduate Checklist for forms for this semester. 

 

Total Credits

14-15

Summer

Credits

MICR 797 MS Paper  

2

See Graduate Checklist for forms for this semester. 

 

Present paper 

 

Total Credits

2

Total Credits

30

 

Sample Plan of Study - Two Years

First Year

Fall

Credits

MICR 701 Intro to Graduate Research  

1

Structure and Function Requirement 

3

MICR 793 General Microbiology Inquiry (if needed) 

4

UNIV 720 Scientific Integrity (or equivalent ethics course)  

1

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series 

 

Total Credits

9

Spring

Credits

Microbial Systems Requirement 

3

Analytical Skills and Tech Requirement

3

MICR 790 Microbiology seminar 

1

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series 

 

Complete Plan of Study 

 

Total Credits

7

Second Year

Fall

Credits

Didactic Course Requirements  

3

Didactic Course Requirements  

3

MICR 790 Microbiology Seminar (optional) 

1

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series 

 

Total Credits

7

Spring

Credits

Didactic Course Requirements

3

Didactic Course Requirements

3

MICR 797 MS Paper 

2

Participation in Microbiology Journal Club and seminar series 

 

See Graduate Checklist for forms for this semester.

 

Present paper 

 

Total Credits

8

Total Credits

30