Ecology BS/Bioinformatics MS(non-thesis)

The field of bioinformatics has grown tremendously, driven by remarkable advances in computational analyses, DNA sequencing, and other genomic technologies. Today more than ever, massive amounts of omics data are being generated and the wealth of information within these datasets is continually being mined to increase our knowledge and understanding of not only human health and disease but also of thousands of animal, plant, and microbial species. The demand for workers with advanced bioinformatics experience is large and will continue to grow.

The Institute of Bioinformatics is comprised of faculty members whose research interests cover a broad spectrum of bioinformatics research in the areas of genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, glycomics, and pharmacological informatics. Students who successfully complete the master’s program in bioinformatics will learn to use high-performance computing and to employ experimental and statistical approaches for the analysis of complex biological datasets. Acquiring these skills will position graduates with a competitive advantage when seeking employment in many science-related economic sectors including biotechnology, life and medical sciences, agriculture, and government agencies such as the CDC, Department of Energy, FDA, and USDA. In addition, an M.S. degree in bioinformatics can serve as an excellent foundation for the pursuit of more advanced degrees in science and medicine.

Admission to Program

Because Bioinformatics is an interdisciplinary program of study, students will be advised to take prerequisite courses in any areas where they do not have the necessary background. For example, introductory courses in calculus, statistics, biochemistry, and molecular genetics are important foundational courses considered necessary for acceptance to this program.

After completing 60 hours of undergraduate coursework, students may apply to the Double Dawgs pathway. Upon acceptance, students may take up to 12 credit hours in approved graduate-level courses prior to formal admission into the graduate program. Students who meet the eligibility requirements specified below should arrange to meet with either the Ecology undergraduate coordinator or program advisor and should also meet with the Institute of Bioinformatics graduate coordinator to discuss program feasibility and to be advised on coursework options.

To be eligible for the Ecology B.S./Bioinformatics M.S. (non-thesis) Double Dawgs pathway, students must:
• Have completed at least 60 credit hours before the start of their junior year.
• Have a minimum GPA of 3.5.

A 3.5 GPA is recommended to apply to the pathway and the student must maintain a 3.2 GPA thereafter. Any deviations from the recommended GPA policy will be at the discretion of the program and/or graduate advisor. Admission to the Double Dawgs program does not guarantee admission to the graduate degree program.


Graduate-level courses that may be used to satisfy undergraduate and graduate program requirements.

BINF 8001, Graduate Professional Development (1 hr)
BINF 8006, Programming and Data Structures for Bioinformatics (3 hrs) or BINF 8500, Bioinformatics Algorithms (3 hrs)
ECOL 4000/6000, Population and Community Ecology (3 hrs)
ECOL 4010/6010, Ecosystem Ecology (3 hrs)
ECOL 4010L/6010L, Ecosystem Ecology Lab (1 hrs)

Additional requirements that are unique to this Double Dawgs program:

This Bioinformatics M.S. is a non-thesis professional degree. Students who wish to pursue a thesis master's degree should contact the Institute of Bioinformatics (IOB) graduate coordinator to discuss that option.

Admission to Graduate Program

Students will need to apply to the Graduate School in addition to completing any requirements indicated for admittance to the Bioinformatics Double Dawgs program.
Students need to have a recommended 3.2 GPA to apply to the M.S. program. After completing 90 hours of undergraduate coursework, students will formally apply to the to the Bioinformatics M.S. program in the fall Year 4 and will begin registering as full time M.S. students in the fall of Year 5. Students must complete all required Bioinformatics graduate core courses and elective graduate courses before they can obtain the M.S. degree.

Program Advisor

  • Name: April King Mosley
  • Email:
  • Phone: 706-542-7783
  • Address: B118C Davison Life Sciences Building

Undergraduate Major Information

  • Major: Ecology B.S.
  • Department/College: Odum School of Ecology

Advising Contact

  • Name: Amanda Rugenski
  • Email:
  • Phone: 706-542-9314
  • Address: Odum School of Ecology, 140 E. Green Street, UGA

Additional Advising Contact

  • Name: Misha Boyd
  • Email:
  • Phone: 706-542-0800
  • Address: Odum School of Ecology, 140 E. Green Street, UGA

Graduate Major Information

  • Major: Bioinformatics M.S.
  • Department/College: Institute of Bioinformatics

Advising Contact

  • Name: Jan Mrazek
  • Email:
  • Phone: 706-542-1065
  • Address: 523 Biological Sciences Building