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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between the OSU Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and the Ohio State Biochemistry Program?

The Ohio State Biochemistry Program (OSBP) is an interdisciplinary Ph.D. program with nearly 100 active faculty from more than 20 departments across campus. Many faculty from the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry are members of the Ohio State Biochemistry Program. However, the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry does not offer a Ph.D. degree in Biochemistry, only a Ph.D. in Chemistry with a biological focus. Therefore, if you want to complete your Ph.D. in Biochemistry with a qualified faculty member from the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, you must apply and be admitted to the Ohio State Biochemistry Program.


Do you accept students each semester?

Applications can be submitted only during the fall, and new students are admitted for an Autumn Semester start only. However, domestic students may request an early start during the preceding Summer Term.


Does OSBP require the GRE?

The General GRE exam is no longer required.


Is there a minimum GPA requirement?

The average GPA of those admitted to OSBP is 3.6 on a 4.0 scale. 

Is there a minimum English Proficiency requirement for international students?

The university's minimum English Proficiency requirement is 550 on the paper-based TOEFL, 79 on the Internet-based TOEFL,  7.0 on the IELTS exam, or 120 on the Duolingo exam.  OSBP's English Proficiency preference is 620 on the paper-based TOEFL or 105 on the Internet-based TOEFL.  

Can international students be exempted from providing an English Proficiency exam score?

Applicants who are citizens of, or who have received a bachelor’s degree or higher by the time of matriculation from, one of the following countries are exempt from the English proficiency requirement: Australia, Belize, the British Caribbean and British West Indies, Canada (except Quebec), England, Ghana, Guyana, Ireland, Liberia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Singapore, Scotland, the United States and Wales.


After I submit my application, how long will it take to get the final decision of the OSBP Admissions Committee?

The deadline for application submission for Domestic and International Students is:

  • December 1

Our Admissions Committee begins to review complete applications in early December, and domestic and international students residing in the USA will typically be invited to interview on campus during the month of February. Admissions decisions may be made any time prior to April 15. Please check your online application status regularly.


What types of funding are available?

All Ohio State Biochemistry Program students are fully funded throughout their time in the Ph.D program.  We offer competitive Fellowships or Graduate Research Associate positions to our first year students.  Funding includes the current OSBP annual stipend for the 2023-2024 school year $32,352, fully paid tuition and health care.  All students who submit a complete application by the specified deadline will automatically be reviewed for the University Fellowship competition. Students in years 2 and beyond are funded by the student's PI and may be in the form of a Graduate Research Associate position, Graduate Teaching Associate position, Fellowship, or Traineeship.   


How do I apply for a fellowship?

University Fellowships:  The criteria for University Fellowship nominees have been pre-determined by the Graduate School.  Students who meet the requirements will automatically considered to be nominated for a fellowship.  The OSBP Admission Committee will select the most competitive students to nominate for the fellowship competition. These students may be contacted for additional information. Students who are awarded a University Fellowship will receive a notification from the Graduate School as well as a notice from our program.


Which fees are waived, and are there any expenses that I have to pay myself?

Tuition and academic fees are full paid for all OSBP students both domestic and international. Fees that are not covered by the program include the COTA (public city bus) bus fee, student activity fee, recreation fee, student legal fee, and student union fee. Students are also responsible for parking passes. These fees auto-deduct each month out of the student's paycheck.


Will I have to pay taxes on my fellowship?

Yes, most fellowships are taxable.  Students will be responsible for submitting their tax returns at the appropriate time. The Graduate School provides information to you about taxes. 


What are my housing options? Will I be able to afford an apartment?

Graduate student housing is available on campus, although most students choose to rent an off-campus apartment. Information on on-campus housing can be found at https://housing.osu.edu/living-on-campus/graduate-professional-and-non-traditional-housing/. Information on off-campus housing can be found at http://offcampus.osu.edu/off-campus-living/.


If I need a loan to supplement my stipend, who do I contact?

Ohio State has a Student Financial Aid Office that assists students with loans. The phone number is  614.292.0300.


How soon after I start classes do I choose an advisor?

Students may choose a faculty advisor after completing the 3 required laboratory rotations. Each rotation lasts seven weeks. Typically OSBP first year students do 2 rotations in the Fall Semester and 1 rotation during the first session of Spring Semester. You may contact our faculty in advance of your arrival to arrange lab rotations, but all rotations must be completed prior to selecting a permanent advisor.


What is the average time to graduation?

The PhD is typically received in about 5-7 years. The average time to graduate from OSBP is 5.7 years.


What type of jobs do students from the OSBP get after graduation?

About 2/3 of our graduates take a position as a Post-doctoral Researcher, with most of the rest accepting a research job in industry.


If I am invited for an on-campus interview, will my trip be paid for?

Yes, we will provide a full reimbursement of travel expenses for prospective students interviewing on campus during our recruitment events. Details will be provided with your invitation.