Page Content
Browse up a level:Biomedical Research Training Navigation menu for the following sub-section:

Ph.D. Program


Mayo Clinic Ph.D. students studying in library

Admission requirements for the Ph.D. Program include a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university, a strong background in the basic sciences, and prior research experience.

Prerequisites and technical standards


All Ph.D. Program candidates must fulfill the following requirements for eligibility:

  • A baccalaureate degree, preferably in the biological or physical sciences, must be obtained from an accredited institution. A cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale is necessary. Certification of the degree is required.
  • The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test is optional.

Undergraduate coursework expectations:

  • Applicants are expected to have completed one year of coursework with demonstrated competence (B average or above) in biology, chemistry, physics and calculus.
  • Additional coursework in biochemistry, molecular biology, cell biology and physiology is encouraged.
  • Applicants for the Biomedical Engineering and Physiology Track are encouraged to have courses in quantitative science and engineering (such as signal processing, computer science, instrumentation).

Note that undergraduate courses are not available at Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.

Technical standards

The following nonacademic criteria (technical standards) are required for all students, with or without reasonable accommodation, to participate in the graduate education program:

  • Able to participate actively in all aspects of laboratory experimentation. Observation and information acquisition requires functional auditory and somatic sensation.
  • Able to communicate your discoveries to the scientific community in English. Required communication skills include speaking, reading and writing. If English is not your native language, the TOEFL exam is one of six ways to demonstrate English language proficiency. See the English Language Proficiency Attestation Form for more details. If submitting TOEFL (must be within three years of application), use School Code 6444 and Department Code 30 Other.
  • Have sufficient motor function to perform lab experiments.
  • Able to measure, calculate, reason, analyze and synthesize.

How to apply

Your application and all supporting documentation must be received between Sept. 1 – Dec. 1.

Complete the following steps to apply:

  1. Create an account to begin the online Application for Admission
  2. Complete each section of the application and submit
  3. After submission, view the required Supplemental Items and Documents
    • Upload each required item in the Supplemental Items section
    • Complete the Recommendation Request section

Additional required items

  • Personal Statement is to include the following and to be uploaded in the Supplemental Items section.
    • List your prior research experience in chronological order, indicating the role you played in each project. Include copies of abstracts and manuscripts published or in press. (Note: Upload your manuscript or abstract documents in the section provided.)
    • Indicate which has been your most satisfying research project and why it was satisfying to you.
    • Summarize your current scientific interests and career goals.
    • Specifically answer the question: "Why do you want to be a biomedical scientist?"
    • Your personal statement should be two to four pages if single-spaced, or three to five pages if double-spaced.
  • Unofficial transcripts of courses from all colleges or universities attended may be uploaded in the Supplemental Items area for application purposes. If accepted to the program, official transcripts must be emailed from the institution to or mailed directly to:

Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
Attn: Sarah Giese
GU 2-24
200 First Street SW
Rochester, MN 55905

  • Three letters of recommendation (including letters from research mentors) are required and must be completed in the Recommendation Request section. Each recommender will receive an email with a link to complete a rating form and upload a letter.
  • If you choose to submit a GRE score report, use School Code 6444 and Department Code 0299 Other. Upload the results into the Supplemental Items section.

The most qualified applicants are invited to interview. Mayo Clinic welcomes applications from diverse learners.