Applicants for the graduate program must satisfy the requirements of the Graduate School, which will include either a bachelors (BA or BS) degree or a DDS or equivalent. Dental hygienists completing a bachelors program are encouraged to apply.
Applicants are encouraged to identify a research advisor early in the application process. Program staff are happy to help students with this process; please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. The Graduate Program in Oral Biology requires all students to have a research advisor before a formal offer of admission can be made. See below for additional information on funding and financial aid.
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How To Apply
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Fall 2016 enrollment (classes begin September 6, 2016): Submit application on or before December 1, 2015. NOTE NEW DEADLINE!
Applications must be completed online. Files are incomplete and will not be reviewed until ALL application materials are received
The Graduate Record Examination is required. Applicants to the DDS/PhD program may submit a recent DAT score in lieu of the GRE. The University of Minnesota’s GRE code is 6874. Test results are received by the Graduate School and included with your application.
International students may also need to submit TOEFL or IELTS scores. To determine if you need to submit such scores, please see the Graduate School's website.
Test results are one of many factors considered in the admissions process and low test scores do not automatically preclude admission. Strong applicants will have TOEFL IBT scores above 90 and GRE scores at or above 500V (153 in new system), 600Q (148 in new system), and 5.0 writing.
Letters of Recommendation
Applicants must submit three (3) letters of recommendation online. Paper letters mailed to the Director of Graduate Studies will not be considered. Letters must describe the applicant's potential to become an independent scientist or investigator, offering specific examples, and comment on the potential for the applicant to teach and achieve an academic career. If the applicant is a clinician and/or intends to engage in clinical training, letters should also describe the applicant's clinical skills or potential to acquire clinical skills, and explain why the applicant can be successful in a concurrent research training program. Recommendation letters without narrative description of the applicant will not be considered complete.
Applicants must submit a personal statement. The personal statement must explain in detail how a degree in Oral Biology will advance the applicant’s research and academic career. In addition, the personal statement must outline the research questions that the applicant would like to pursue. This document will be uploaded to the online application as Statement #1 on the "Applicant Statements" page.
The online application also shows a Statement #2. Statement #2 is optional for Oral Biology applicants.
In addition to a personal statement, applicants must submit an essay of about two pages describing their research aspirations. Each applicant may choose one of two essay formats for their response:
1) Describe in detail one or two significant research questions that the applicant would like to pursue. In the context of contemporary science, explain why the question(s) is important. Explain specific strategies or experimental plans to address the question(s).
2) Review the five core curricula recommended by the Graduate Program in Oral Biology and the mentor faculty described on the program website. Explain how the applicant's interest in investigating a specific research question can be complimented by one or more mentor faculty. Describe how the research experiences and coursework in one or more of the core curricula will advance the applicant's research and career plans. While the applicant is not committed to following the curriculum selected at the time of
application, the application review committee will be comprised of faculty members who work in this area.
The research essay should be uploaded into the Graduate School application in the "Graduate Program Supplementary Information" section as the "Description of Research or Work Experience."
The Graduate Program in Oral Biology welcomes applications from international students. For more information about graduate study at the University of Minnesota, review the Frequently Asked Questions for International Students and visit the International Student and Scholar Services website.
Admission to the Graduate Program in Oral Biology is contingent upon each student securing funding for the duration of the PhD degree. The Graduate Program in Oral Biology does not guarantee any financial support. Applicants are urged to pursue external fellowship support from agencies such as NIH, other home governments, and foundations. Obtaining funding from sources within the University of Minnesota is highly competitive. Applicants with the DDS or equivalent degree who are U.S. citizens or permanent U.S. residents are eligible to apply for a postdoctoral fellowship from the Minnesota Craniofacial Research Training (MinnCResT) Program. Funding may also be available directly from the student’s faculty research advisor. The Graduate Program in Oral Biology will provide advice on potential sources of funding. Health insurance coverage will vary depending on the source of funding.