Are you eligible for an application fee waiver?

The recruitment, retention, and support of students from underrepresented backgrounds is central to the Graduate School's mission. We strive to develop and promote efforts to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion campus-wide.  Application fee waivers are offered to eligible applicants.

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Admission Philosophy

The Graduate Program in Cell Biology, Stem Cells and Development is committed to training a diverse population of students to become the future leaders of biomedical research. We seek students with the intellectual aptitude, independence and drive to pursue scientific research. Our admissions process uses a holistic evaluation process that highly values an applicant's trajectory, research experience and passion for science, over test scores and undergraduate institution.

Student Support

Students accepted in the CSD PhD program are provided full tuition, health and dental insurance, and a stipend of $37,000 per year for living expenses. Continued support is contingent upon satisfactory academic and research performance by the student. When a student enters a thesis lab, the thesis mentor assumes complete responsibility for the student’s stipend, tuition, fees, and associated research costs.

We are committed to providing equitable access to learning opportunities for all students, including those with disabilities (e.g., mental health, attentional, learning, chronic health, sensory, or physical) who meet the technical standards of the program, with or without reasonable accommodations.

If you are an applicant with a disability who would like to engage in a confidential consultation about disability access at CU Anschutz, or who requires accommodations to complete the application or interview process, please contact The Office of Disability, Access & Inclusion. 

Entrance Requirements

GPA | There is no absolute requirement for grade point average above that required by the graduate school, but successful applicants will generally have GPAs above 3.2 (A=4.0).

Undergraduate Studies | Admission to the CSD Program requires a baccalaureate degree (BS or BA), preferably in a biological science, chemistry, physics, or engineering. Students entering the program have typically taken organic chemistry, biology, biochemistry, physics and calculus, though these are not firm requirements. Coursework in two or more of the following subjects is recommended and certainly enhances your application: cell biology, developmental biology, genetics, molecular biology, molecular genetics, neurobiology, immunology, and physiology.

Graduate Record Exam (GRE) | GRE tests (general or subject) are not required and will not be evaluated as part of your application.

Research Experience | Research experience is highly recommended. This type of real world experience is extremely valuable in providing insight to both the Admissions Committee and the candidate as to how a budding scientist (you!) responds to the rigors and rewards of scientific endeavor.

Letters of Recommendation | Three (3) letters of recommendation are required for your application to be considered complete. These letters are important and are key to your evaluation. You should select faculty who how well you have performed in classes and who can talk about your research experience and the likelihood of your future success as a scientist.

How to Apply


The application must be complete and supporting materials received by December 1 for full consideration.

When you apply to the CSD Graduate Program, you have two options:


  • Apply to the CSD program directly, if you feel our program is the best fit for your already focused interests (instructions below).

To apply directly to CSD, applicants must submit the following:

  • Online Graduate School application
  • A $50.00 domestic and $75.00 international non-refundable application fee.
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation.
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores and financial support verification (international students only).
  • One (1) official transcript of all academic work completed to date. To be considered "official", the transcripts must come directly from the issuing institution. Note: Unofficial transcripts are acceptable for initial application submissions; official transcripts will be required upon offer of acceptance into the program. 

Electronic Transcripts should be sent to:

If sending a physical transcript, please mail to:

Graduate School
Mail Stop C296
Fitzsimons Building, W5107
13001 E. 17th Place
Aurora, CO 80045



Questions should be directed to:

Katherine Doyle, Program Administrator

International Applicants


Since additional processing is required for international applications, the application may not be complete even if submitted on December 1. Submission by November 1 will ensure time to complete administrative processing before December 1.

Applications submitted between November 1 and December 1 will only be considered if all application components have been received and processed.

International students must meet ALL of the requirements above and those required by International Admissions. 

Visit International Admissions for more information.

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