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General Information


For information on general admission requirements and much more, please consult the Graduate School website and review the various pages under the Prospective Students tab.  A link to the on-line application for admission can be found on the Application Information page, along with additional helpful information.

In addition to requirements set by the Graduate School, other factors are considered by the Genetics Program's Admissions Committee. Candidates should show evidence of a superior undergraduate performance, ideally with strong preparation in the life sciences.  The Program does not require, but prefers to see, previous research experience.  Whenever possible, letters of recommendation should be obtained from faculty who can address the candidate's academic qualifications and/or research expertise.

Deadlines and Required Examinations

The application deadline for international students is January 1, and the deadline for domestic candidates is January 15.  Under exceptional circumstances, applications may be submitted after these dates with permission of the Program Director and will be evaluated on a rolling basis. Applicants who would like to be considered for University Graduate Council Fellowships (for exceptionally well-qualified applicants) or Turner Fellowships (for applicants from under-represented groups) should submit their applications as soon as possible and well before the deadlines.

Prospective students should take the GRE examination, and international candidates whose native or primary language is not English must also take the TOEFL or IELTS exam.  Subject-specific GREs are not required but can be helpful to the Admissions Committee. Test scores should be reported electronically to the Graduate School, Stony Brook University, code 2548. A 'department code' is not needed. Note that scores must be reported electronically, since the Graduate School will not accept photocopies of score reports.

"Should I apply?"

We or our Program faculty are sometimes asked to review qualifications or evaluate test scores to help prospective students decide if they should apply for admission. Regrettably, we cannot evaluate a candidate's qualifications without a complete application. The Admissions Committee considers each candidate individually, weighing the entire application. Test scores are considered, but academic interests and performance, research experience and interests, letters of recommendation, and personal statements are equally important. If you have a sincere interest in research in genetics, we strongly encourage you to apply.

International Students

International candidates sometimes ask if we accept students from specific countries and, if so, how many. We evaluate potential students on the strength of their qualifications, not on their country of origin. We actively recruit from around the world and select the most qualified candidates, regardless of where they are from. Just as the numbers of applications we receive will change from year to year, so too will the numbers of incoming students and the countries that they represent. The demographics fluctuate as degrees are awarded, but approximately 35% to 40% of our Genetics students are from countries other than the United States. There is wonderful cultural and international diversity at Stony Brook, which is reflected in our program.


It is not possible to interview every applicant, but the Genetics Program does invite some candidates to Stony Brook each year, typically in February or March. Since it is especially difficult to meet with international candidates, the Graduate School sends teams of faculty, representing different departments and degree programs, to various foreign cities each year. A very small number of Genetics candidates may be interviewed during these visits, depending upon the size of the faculty delegation and duration of each visit. Alternatively, interviews may be conducted by telephone or Skype.

Financial Aid and Support

All students (international or domestic) accepted into the Program receive a stipend (which will be $29,000 per year for students entering in Fall 2017), subsidized health insurance benefits, and a full tuition scholarship.

Students eligible for New York State residency are expected to establish residency before the Fall semester of their second year of study, since scholarships thereafter are paid at the 'in-state' tuition rate. The Graduate Program will advise and assist students in establishing residency. International students with J-1 or F-1 visas are ineligible for residency status, so full scholarships at the 'out-of-state' rate are provided.

Click here to view the Program's informational brochure.

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