Last updated February 20, 2020
As part of the series on How to Fully Fund Your Ph.D., here is a list of Ph.D. programs in biology that offer full funding to their students. A Ph.D. in biology and related disciplines opens the door to a variety of interesting careers. You could work as a scientist, university professor, or serve as a consultant, among many options.
“Full funding” is a financial aid package for students that includes full tuition remission and an annual stipend or salary for the duration of the student’s doctoral studies. Full funding is not universal, so it’s essential that you research the financial aid offerings of all the potential Ph.D. programs in your academic field, including small and lesser-known schools.
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Arizona State University (Tempe, AZ): We guarantee 5 years of academic-year funding as a teaching or research assistant. This includes stipend, insurance and tuition support to cover the required 84 hours for the degree.
Boston University, Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences (Boston, MA): Students receive full tuition coverage, fees, health insurance options, and a $35,000 stipend per year.
Duke University (Durham, NC): The Graduate School expects that PhD students will be financially supported for the majority of the time they are registered and working toward their degree. Generally speaking, PhD students should receive payment of tuition, a stipend, and fee support for a minimum of five years, as well as health insurance for six years.
Harvard University, Ph.D. in Biological Sciences in Public Health (Boston, MA): All students admitted to the PhD in biological sciences in public health program, including international students, are guaranteed full funding, which includes a stipend, tuition, and health insurance for five years, provided they maintain satisfactory progress.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, MA): All graduate students receive full-tuition coverage, a stipend to cover living expenses, and Individual Health Insurance.
Mayo Clinic College of Medicine & Science (Rochester, MN): Our Ph.D. Program in biomedical science includes an annual graduate-level stipend, full tuition and travel expenses to scientific meetings provided by mentors.
University of California – Irvine (Irvine, CA): Students admitted to the doctoral programs in the School of Biological Sciences are offered full financial support as long as they are making satisfactory progress including a generous stipend, fees, non-resident tuition and health insurance.
University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, PA): As of Fall 2019, the normal level of support is $29,520/year; the stipend amount typically increases by about 3-5% each year. The University of Pittsburgh provides excellent health insurance options and tuition waivers.
University of Rochester, Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (Rochester, NY): The Program is fully funded with tuition fellowship, competitive stipend and health insurance.
University of Southern California (Los Angeles, CA): PhD students receive full funding throughout their studies, including stipend, health and dental benefits.
University of Utah (Salt Lake City, UT): Doctoral students are guaranteed five years of stipend support at $28,000/year through a combination of research assistantships, training grants, and teaching assistantships. In addition to the annual stipend, support for doctoral students includes tuition and health insurance.
Van Andel Institute Graduate School, Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Biology (Grand Rapids, MI): Students in the doctoral program at the Graduate School are supported by institutional (internal) fellowships for five years. These fellowships include a stipend of approximately $35,000 per year and health, dental and vision insurance for the student (and family). The Graduate School also provides a laptop computer and up to $2,000 per year to attend scientific conferences.
You can also find several external fellowships in the ProFellow database for graduate and doctoral study, including opportunities for funding for dissertation research, fieldwork, language study and summer work experiences.
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