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BCB Application for Admission to Graduate Studies and for Graduate Awards

Application Deadline
  • Applications submitted by December 1 will be prioritized for early evaluation.
  • The application deadline is January 1.

This application will cover both admission and the research stipend; there is NOT a separate financial aid application for the Biochemistry & Cell Biology doctoral program.  Candidates who miss the early evaluation deadline must do so in full knowledge that they are in a less competitive position. Applicants for admission to the graduate program must submit the following:

Application form:
  The Rice Biochemistry & Cell Biology online application.

Please note that applicants who are applying to more than one department must submit a separate application for each graduate program. 

Official Transcripts: All offers of admission are contingent on receipt of the official transcript or transcripts of all previous college or university (including graduate) work. These records should be sent directly to the department (address below) by the institution or institutions attended. An unofficial transcript may be uploaded to the application for preliminary evaluation, but once an applicant is selected for an interview, the official transcript will be due.  A supplementary transcript, covering work in progress at the time of application and any later work, must be furnished as soon as possible.

Recommendation Letters: Recommendations should be requested from four persons (preferably professors in the applicant's major field) who know the personal and scholastic qualities of the applicant. Letters may be submitted online if you select that option when you list your references on the application. If the online option is not selected,  forms provided for this purpose  should be mailed by the writers directly to the department. Applications will not be reviewed until at least three recommendations are received.

GRE: Applicants should have their scores on the aptitude portion of the Graduate Record Examination sent directly to the department by Educational Testing Service. Advanced test scores are preferred, but not required. Tests should be scheduled at least six weeks before the application deadline.

    GRE codes:

  • Institutional Code is 6609
  • Department Code is 0202

TOEFL: Applicants whose native language is not English should also have TOEFL scores reported. The minimum scores for each type of TOEFL test are 600 (paper-based test), 250 (computer-based test) and 90 (Internet-based test).  For students who choose to take the IELTS in lieu of TOEFL, the minimum score is 7.


  • Institutional code is 6609
  • Department code is 34

Fee: There is no application fee for students who are currently enrolled in American institutions of higher education, or for United States citizens and permanent residents. If you are in this category, please request a fee waiver before submitting your application by sending an email to bioc-gradapps@rice.edu.

Application fees for international students can be waived if approved in advance (do not submit the application until you are approved or this may result in delays in processing your application) for students who meet all of the following requirements:

1. Scholarships or other forms of independent funding that will provide living expenses for a minimum of 2 years,
2. GPAs in the top 5% of your graduating class, and
3. Combined Math and Verbal GRE scores must be greater than 1300 on the old scale, 319 on the new scale; the TOEFL must be 100 or above (internet-based test).

To request approval of an application fee waiver for an international applicant, please email bioc-gradapps@rice.edu and include an unofficial copy of your undergraduate transcript, your TOEFL and GRE scores, and documentation of your scholarship in the email.

Application fee waivers will not be processed between December 21 and January 2.  Applications requesting a fee waiver during this period will be processed after January 2, therefore, requests for online letters of recommendation also will not be sent to recommenders until after January 2.

Please have your transcripts and test scores sent directly to the department at the address below:
Graduate Admissions Coordinator
Department of Biochemistry & Cell Biology
Rice University, MS-140
P.O. Box 1892
Houston, TX 77251-1892
for FedEx, UPS, DHL and other couriers:
Graduate Admissions Coordinator
Department of Biochemistry & Cell Biology
Rice University, MS-140
6100 Main Street
Houston, TX  77005