Biological Sciences M.S.

  • Two students examine a petri dish

    Biological Sciences M.S.

    Develop and share new discoveries in biological sciences to help build a better future for Alaska and the world.

Explore the biological sciences master’s degree program at the University of Alaska Anchorage

Scientific research conducted by graduate students in UAA’s Master of Science in biological sciences degree program helps develop solutions to local and global issues such as public health, mining and oil, climate change and food subsistence.

Biological sciences scholarships and financial aid
Learn about funding opportunities for college tuition and graduate research. For example, the LGL Alaska Graduate Ecology Research Award supports graduate student research in ecology.

Career development
Develop valuable and marketable job skills, including scientific methodology and experimentation, critical thinking, scientific writing, grantsmanship and classroom teaching.

Arctic studies
UAA’s close proximity to Arctic field sites and polar regions means you can conduct extensive and efficient research on topics unique to the region’s population and environment. In particular, graduate students and program faculty are developing studies on emerging topics in bioinformatics and microbiology, including biochemistry and pathogenic microbiology.

Faculty mentorship in biology
Graduate students work closely with faculty mentors to conduct research at field sites across the state or in research labs on the UAA campus. Faculty mentor students in experimental design, sample and data collection, analysis and interpretation as well as writing and oral communication skills.


Did you know..

Join the Department of Biological Sciences’ Bioinformatics Working Group to explore projects and topics in the lucrative field of biological data analysis and interpretation.

What can you do with a biology degree from UAA?

UAA’s Master of Science in biological sciences prepares you for success in Ph.D. and professional doctorate programs, as well as advanced careers in basic or applied research, academia and other scientific fields.

Biological sciences graduate programs

  • Ph.D. in biological sciences, a collaborative program with the University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • Doctor of Pharmacy
  • Doctor of Occupational Therapy
  • Doctor of Physical Therapy

Biological sciences careers
Many program alumni stay at UAA to work as research technicians or adjunct faculty. Others have developed research and professional careers with state and federal agencies, such as:

  • Alaska Department of Fish and Game
  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • U.S. Forest Service
  • U.S. Centers for Disease Control
  • U.S. Department of Homeland Security

By the numbers..

The employment rate of biological sciences M.S. alumni in science-related research over the past six years.
UAA Department of Biological Sciences
The acceptance rate of biological sciences M.S. alumni into Ph.D. research programs over the past six years.
UAA Department of Biological Sciences

Biological sciences master’s degree program highlights

Research-intensive and thesis-based, the biology master’s degree at UAA combines theory and practice to develop your expertise in field-specific content and experimental design.

  • Collaborate with professional researchers from UAA and federal and state agencies on field and lab research. Develop your own study tailored to your interests or join a faculty project. Faculty research topics include Arctic research, landscape ecology, conservation, microbiology, cell and molecular mechanisms, animal physiology, biomechanics, disease biology and toxicology.
  • Conduct Arctic research in Svalbard, Norway. Through the Office of International and Intercultural Affairs, you can enroll in the study abroad program at the University of the Arctic, where you will participate in graduate-level courses and work at the University Centre in Svalbard.
  • Work with modern equipment and instrumentation in state-of-the-art facilities. On the Anchorage campus, you’ll have access to professional research-grade facilities and specialized labs in the ConocoPhillips Integrated Science Building, the Ecosystem and Biomedical Laboratory and the Natural Sciences Building.

Amazing stories from biology alumni

UAA is where I developed the skills that allow me to problem solve in almost any situation. My educational experience was first class and all tools were available to ensure my success.

Chris Barnett
M.S. Biological Sciences ’12, Epidemiologist, State of Alaska Department of Public Health
A group of students in lab coats gather in a circle

Network with peers, faculty and the science community. Hosting guest speakers who are experts in the field, UAA’s Biological Sciences Seminar Series features presentations on current issues in biology. Events are free and open to the public.

Biological Sciences Seminar Series
A student asks a professor a question about a tool

The Alaska IDeA Network for Biomedical Research Excellence promotes the development, coordination and sharing of research resources and expertise. UAA contributes a health focus by hosting programs enhanced by the university’s proximity to premier health care facilities.

A pharmacy student takes notes in the lab

Collaborating with the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the University of Washington Medical School, Idaho State University, East Carolina University and Creighton University, the UAA Graduate School enrolls more than 1,500 students from all over the world.

UAA Graduate School

Biological sciences master’s degree program curriculum

Through rigorous coursework and faculty-directed field and lab research, you will gain expertise in fundamental biology concepts, including cell and molecular biology, genetics, ecology, physiology and evolution. As a master’s-level student, you’ll also choose at least one focus area within biology or biochemistry to specialize in.

The biological sciences M.S. degree program culminates in a thesis defense seminar, in which you present your research findings after submitting a written thesis.

Top classes for biology graduate students

  • Experimental Design and Statistics
  • Graduate Proseminar in Sciences