Biomathematics Graduate Programs

Official Program Requirements for Biomathematics

MS in Biomathematics

The MS in Biomathematics is used primarily as a step to further graduate work in Biomathematics. Direct admission to the MS in Biomathematics program is only offered under special circumstances. If your initial objective is MS training, please contact the department (email: to discuss your goals before applying.

Ph.D. in Biomathematics

The goal of the doctoral program is to train creative, fully independent investigators in mathematical, theoretical, and computational biology who can initiate research in both applied mathematics and their chosen biomedical specialty. This is reflected in a curriculum providing doctoral-level competence in biology or biomedical specialty; substantial training in applied mathematics, statistics, and computing; and appropriate biomathematics courses and research experience.

Individualized programs permit students to select graduate courses in applied mathematics, biomathematics, and statistics appropriate to their area of research and to choose among diverse biomedical specialties.

Coursework: Entering students usually have a strong background in mathematics, statistics, and/or physics, in addition to some training in biology or biomedicine. 

Sample programs for students interested in biophysics, neuroscience, molecular imaging, genetics, cancer, phylogenetics, population dynamics, systems, pharmacokinetics are available from the department.  Students with substantial upper-division or graduate-level training in biology or mathematics may have some course requirements waived.

The course requirements for the doctoral degree fall into three categories (note that all Biomath and most other courses are 4 units each):

  • Biomathematics: 16 units from core courses and 8 units from electives

  • Biological electives: 24 units, at least 16 graduate-level

  • Quantitative electives: 24 units, at least 16 graduate-level

The departmental written comprehensive exams test competency in each of the areas covered by the student’s 4 core Biomathematics courses.  Students typically take exams in August before the beginning of their second or third year, with the option to retake failed exams in a subsequent year.

Additional information can be found on the admissions page and the student resources page.
A list of current students and recent graduates can be found here