Accelerated Programs

Accelerated Bachelor and Master of Science

NDSU offers an Accelerated Bachelor and Master of Science program for majors in the Department of Biological Sciences. The program allows students to begin thesis research during their junior year and simultaneously pursue their Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in biological sciences. Students will work closely with a faculty member in biological sciences who will serve as a mentor. The program is designed to produce a research-based master’s degree.


Application Process

Students apply for the program through the Department of Biological Sciences during the fall of junior year. Applications are due to the department by October 1st.


Applications include:

  •    Statement of Intent
  •    Three recommendation letters
  •    Signatures of one to three potential faculty research mentors

Applicants who have met eligibility criteria and successfully identified a research mentor will be interviewed by a panel of biological sciences faculty. If the department recommends admission to the program, students will submit an application to the NDSU Graduate School.

To be eligible, students must have:

  • 65 credits earned or in progress (30 at NDSU)
  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5
  • Completed the following:
    • General Biology I and Lab (BIOL 150/L) 
    • General Biology II and Lab (BIOL 151/L) 
    • Genetics and Lab (BOT/BIOL/ZOO 315/L)
    • Authentic Research Experience Lab (such as Antibiotic Discovery BIOL 270)
  • Identified at least three potential faculty research mentors

Plan Of Study

Students are admitted to the program spring semester of their junior year and submit a Plan of Study that includes degree requirements for both their bachelor’s and master’s programs.

The department offers 20 three or four credit courses at the 400/600 level, all of which can contribute to the accelerated program. A Research Principles Seminar (BIOL 391) will be offered during spring semester for students accepted to the accelerated program.

During their fourth year (96 credits earned), students may enroll in BIOL 400/600 level courses, and may use 15 of those credits toward the 122 required credits for their bachelor’s degree. Students must maintain a B minimum in each of the 400/600 level courses to remain in the program.


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