Academics | Faculties | FACULTY OF NATURAL & APPLIED SCIENCES | Department of Sciences | Master of Science in Biology | NDU


The MS in Biology is designed to provide graduates with in-depth knowledge in advanced topics in biology. The curriculum, through course and thesis requirements, trains students to be independent thinkers who are able to identify specific research problems in biology and investigate them. The thesis option provides the necessary background to pursue further research in biology and is more applicable for students planning to enroll in a PhD program.

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The MS Biology Program at NDU-Louaize is designed to provide graduates with in-depth knowledge in advanced topics in biology. The curriculum, through course and thesis requirements, trains students to be independent thinkers who are able to identify specific research problems in biology and investigate them.

Program Educational Objectives

  1. 1.Prepare students for better careers in biology by extending their knowledge, skills and experience;
  2. 2.Train students to be independent and critical thinkers, capable of solving basic problems in biology by employing appropriate experimental methodology and design;
  3. 3.Develop students’ communication skills and leadership abilities;
  4. 4.Accentuate the value of biology in our society.

Program Learning Outcomes

Students should be able to:

  1. 1.Explain fundamental concepts in the different basic areas of biology;
  2. 2.Design a study, follow the proper experimental procedures, and apply the appropriate laboratory techniques to investigate scientific problems;
  3. 3.Troubleshoot experimental procedures;
  4. 4.Analyze critically primary scientific literature; apply the appropriate statistical tools for data analysis;
  5. 5.Write scientific papers which require literature search, selection of relevant papers, interpretation of scientific data, and synthesis of a coherent scientific review;
  6. 6.Communicate effectively scientific ideas and findings in written and oral formats.

Admission Requirements

In addition to the University graduate admission requirements, students holding a BS in biology with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 or the equivalent will be accepted, while those with a cumulative GPA of 2.7-2.99 or the equivalent will be conditionally accepted. The conditional acceptance will be removed when the student receives a minimum of a “B” average for the 6 credits taken during his/her first semester. Students from other relevant majors may be also given conditional admission pending completion of some supplementary courses over and above the 36 credits required for the MS in Biology, as specified by the faculty graduate committee, with a minimum of a “B” average. These supplementary credits do not count towards the 36 cr. required for the MS degree. Normally, a maximum of nine transfer credits from previous graduate work completed at another accredited institution of higher education may be transferred upon the discretion of the faculty graduate committee.

Graduation Requirements

To satisfy the requirements for the degree of M.S. in Biology, the student must complete a total of 36 credits, including 6 credits of thesis work, with an overall average of at least 3.0/4.0.

Based on the selection of elective courses in the major, students can choose between two orientations: Molecular Biology or Ecology/Organismal Biology. The selected elective courses should be approved by the advisor.

Thesis work provides the necessary background and research experience to students planning to pursue a Ph.D. and indulge in scientific research activity.


Students in the degree of M.S. in Biology may register for the thesis course BIO 691 only after successfully completing at least 19 credits with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0/4.0 and after receiving the approval of both the department chairperson and the thesis advisor.

Work Duration

The thesis work is expected to be successfully completed within a duration of two semesters.


Immediately after receiving a note of completion from the thesis advisor and three copies of the thesis from the student, the department chairperson shall appoint the oral defense jury and its chairperson. It shall consist of the thesis advisor and two full-time faculty members. The department chairperson shall distribute to each member of the jury one copy of the thesis.

Oral Defense Schedule

The oral defense for the thesis shall take place within two weeks from the jury appointment.

Final Grade

Each jury member shall evaluate the student thesis work, then the jury shall thoroughly examine the student during the oral defense and consequently assign the proper grade by a majority vote. In case of a tie, the committee chairperson shall have the casting vote.

Thesis Copies Distribution

The student shall submit four bound copies, two soft bound copies and two unbound copies of the approved final copy of the thesis to the jury chairperson for signatures and distribution to the student, thesis advisor, department, faculty, and the remaining members of the jury. The two unbound copies shall be sent to the university library.

Suggested Program

Fall Semester Year 1 (10cr.)
BIO 603 Quantitative Analysis in Biology 3 cr.
BIO 608
Advanced Biochemistry or
Plant Ecology
4 cr.
BIO 610
Advanced Cell Biology or
Advanced Human Physiology
3 cr.
Spring Semester Year 1 (10cr.)
BIO 605 Research Methods in Biology 3 cr.
BIO 6xx Major Elective 3 cr.
BIO 6xx Major Elective 3 cr.
BIO 670 Seminar I 1 cr.
Fall Semester Year 2 (12cr.)
BIO 6xx Major Elective 3 cr.
Free Elective 3 cr.
BIO 691 Thesis 6 cr.
Spring Semester Year 2 (4cr.)
Free Elective
Seminar II
3 cr.
1 cr.
BIO 691 Thesis (continued) 0 cr.
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