Applicants - FAQ

General Questions 

Should I email professors that I am interested in working with? 

Yes. You can email various professors in which you are interested in working with in their lab. The Plant Pathology program offers rotations for PhD students with potential faculty mentors. MS and PhD students can also directly join a faculty mentor's research program. You can find a list of faculty members here

Do I have to be selected by a major professor for admittance? 

MS students are admitted directly into a major professor's lab. This is a choice made between the two parties. PhD candidates are encouraged to rotate in different laboratories, but it is still helpful to contact faculty of interest. 

Can I pursue a master's degree in Plant Pathology? 

Yes. There are two options called Plan I and Plan II. Plan I MS students perform research and are typically supported by their Thesis Advisor to cover all costs and are provided a stipend. Plan II MS students do not perform research and this is a "coursework only" MS degree. Plan II MS students are expected to personally cover all costs. 

Is there an emphasis I can add? 

Yes. There is a Host-Microbe Interactions, Vector-borne Diseases and Biotechnology emphasis. Links can be found at the Graduate Program homepage. 

Is there financial support in the program? 

All accepted students performing research are supported by the graduate group or the faculty mentor. The students will not have any out-of-pocket expenses with regard to tuition and fees, and they will receive a monthly stipend to support living expenses. Student support comes in a variety of ways: internal and external fellowships, research and teaching assistantships. At the time of the application you will be asked to complete a fellowship application. More financial support information can be found here.

When will I know if my application is successful?

Here is a timeline of key events for admission each year:

Online Application Deadline January 5
Admissions committee review applications January - February
Candidates selected for open house February 
Offers of Admittance March
Deadline for acceptance of offer April 15


International Student Frequently Asked Questions 

What is the minimum scores for the TOEFL/IELTS? 


  • 550 on the TOEFL paper-based test (PBT), or
  • 80 on the TOEFL internet-based test (iBT) 

  • IELTS Score: 7.0 points minimum on a 9.0 point scale


How do I know if I need to take the TOEFL or the IELTS? 

If your previous degree was not solely taught in English, you will need to take the exam. You can check out what languages your institution taught here . If your institution shows English and another language you will need to take either of the two exams. If your institution only shows English you do not need to take the exam. 

How do I know if my institution is not accredited? 

Look at your institutions website and look for their accreditation. Also look at the unaccredited institution list here.

How can I calculate my GPA when it is not on a four-point scale? 

Please use the following website to calculate your GPA: GPA-Calculator