Admission requirements

The admission and application requirements for the Master's Program - Microbiology  at the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse are as follows:

  1. Admission to the Microbiology MS requires a minimum course of one introductory microbiology course (MIC 230 Fundamentals of Microbiology or equivalent). Admission to the Clinical Microbiology MS emphasis requires one introductory microbiology course, and courses in immunology and medical microbiology. Students lacking the prerequisite courses may be conditionally admitted contingent on remediation of the prerequisites. Remediated prerequisite courses do not count toward the MS degree.  Additional courses in microbiology and a strong chemistry background, including biochemistry, are also recommended.
  2. An overall undergraduate grade point average of at least 2.85 on a 4.00 scale, an average of at least 3.00 in the last half of all undergraduate work, or an average of at least 3.00 for no less than 12 semester credits of graduate study at another accredited graduate school. 
  3. Completion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).  Average scores in the 40th percentile or higher are strongly recommended. A GRE subject test is not required.
  4. International students must complete and submit either TOEFL or IELTS scores. A TOEFL score of 550 pBT or 79 iBT, or an IELTS score of 6.0 is required.
  5. Students must complete a University of Wisconsin System Online Admission Application form.  The online application process can be started at: /Admissions/Graduate-student/. Students interested in a Graduate Assistantship from the Department of Biology must also complete the Application for Graduate Assistantship form.
  6. Three current letters of recommendation should be sent under separate cover.
  7. An application letter which details:
    1. Academic and professional goals
    2. Previous relevant experiences
    3. Reasons for selecting program
    4. Intent to pursue thesis or non-thesis track or undecided
    5. Research interest(s) if there is a desire to pursue the thesis track
    6. Possible faculty mentor(s) for research if pursuing the thesis track and if known
  8. Completed applications must be returned to the Admissions Office by January 10 for US students, but January 3 for international students. Early applications can be considered prior to the deadline. Late applications will be considered if enrollment objectives have not been satisfied. Consideration for fellowships is extremely unlikely with late applications.
  9. The completed University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Application to Graduate Study form and undergraduate transcripts for US students should be mailed to:
    • UWL Admissions Office
      1725 State Street
      La Crosse, WI 54601
      or sent electronically to:

      All other letters or forms can be sent by mail to:
      Dr. Michael Hoffman
      UW–La Crosse
      Department of Microbiology
      3023 Cowley Hall
      1725 State Street
      La Crosse, WI 54601
      or sent electronically to:

      International students can send all materials to:
      Robert Packard
      Admissions Office
      UW-La Crosse 
      1725 State Street
      La Crosse, WI 54601
  10. A review committee will assess all complete applications and a letter of decision will be sent to the applicant by February 12. For the Microbiology MS (not the Clinical Microbiology MS) acceptance is also dependent upon being admitted to the lab of a Graduate Faculty trainer. Instructions on this part of the process will be sent to students who receive preliminary acceptance. An interview may be required in some instances. Final acceptance or non-acceptance is based upon a comprehensive review of all elements of the completed application. Late applications will be considered only if enrollment objectives have not been satisfied.