University Of Washington Microbiology PHD

Last Updated on December 26, 2022

The University of Washington (UW) is a world-leading research university located in Seattle, Washington. UW’s graduate programs in microbiology are consistently ranked among the best in the US by US News and World Report. In spring 2014, UW’s Information School announced that it would be offering a Microbiology PhD program, however the program currently appears to be on hiatus.

Is there anything else you need to learn about University Of Washington Microbiology PHD? If so, you need not be concerned because the following article will provide the information to answer your questions.

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UW Microbiology

Ph.D. Graduates Ariana Samadpour & Erin Garcia de Jesus Study towards the Ph.D. begins in Autumn quarter. During their first and second years, students take a number of graduate courses in the Department of Microbiology as well as other basic science departments. While all students are required to take several core courses, the program leaves substantial flexibility for a number of elective courses best suited for individual interests. In addition to formal courses, students participate in a departmental journal club and attend the weekly microbiology seminar series. Students are also encouraged to attend seminars offered throughout the academic year by other basic science departments. During the first year, students participate in 10-week research rotations in three laboratories. These rotations allow students to familiarize themselves with the research directions of individual laboratories, assure a broad research experience, and aid in selection of a research advisor and a dissertation project. The teaching requirement for the Ph.D. degree is satisfied by assisting in the teaching of undergraduate laboratories during the first and second year, and by giving two or more formal lectures in undergraduate courses in the third or fourth years of training. In addition to meeting formal requirements, students take part in various scholarly activities on a voluntary basis. This includes a student journal club and an annual graduate student weekend retreat combining science and recreation. Furthermore, students participate in various departmental activities through their representatives on search committees, the graduate admissions committee, and the seminar committee. 

Financial Aid for Graduate Students:Financial support is provided for all fulltime graduate students by teaching assistantships, research assistantships, and predoctoral trainee fellowships, following stipend rates for Basic Sciences Departments in the School of Medicine. The department attempts to ensure continuous support for all students through five years. The support covers resident tuition, student health insurance benefits, and a stipend. Click here to see a list of available Training Grants. 



  1. Completion of a program of study and research as planned by the Graduate Program Coordinator in the student’s major department or college and by the Ph.D. Supervisory Committee. At least 18 credits of course work at the 500 level and above must be completed prior to scheduling the General Examination.  Note that this includes classes that are not graded (CR/NC).
  2. Presentation of 90 credits, 60 of which must be taken at the University of Washington.
  3. Numerical grades must be received in at least 18 quarter credits of course work taken at the University of Washington prior to scheduling the General Examination. The Graduate School accepts numerical grades in departmentally approved 400 and 500 level courses. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 is required for a graduate degree at the University.
  4. Completion of a total of 60 credits prior to scheduling the General Examination (a master’s degree from the UW or another institution may be used as a substitute for 30 of these credits).
  5. Creditable passage of the General Examination.  Registration and completion of credits as a graduate student is required the quarter the exam is taken and candidacy is conferred.
  6. The Candidate must register and complete a minimum of 27 credits of dissertation (MICROM 800) over a period of at least three quarters.  At least one quarter must come after the student passes the General Examination. With the exception of summer, when students take 2 credits, students are limited to a maximum of 10 credits per quarter of dissertation (MICROM 800).
  7. Creditable passage of a Final Examination, which is usually devoted to the defense of the dissertation in the field with which it is concerned. The General and Final Examinations cannot be scheduled during the same quarter. Registration and completion of credit as a graduate student is required the quarter the exam is taken AND the degree is conferred.
  8. Preparation of and acceptance by the Dean of the Graduate School of a dissertation that is a significant contribution to knowledge and clearly indicates training in research.
  9. Completion of all work for the doctoral degree within ten years. This includes quarters spent On-Leave or out of status as well as applicable work from the master’s degree from the University of Washington or a master’s degree from another institution, if used to substitute for 30 credits of enrollment.
  10. Registration and completion of credits as a full- or part-time graduate student at the University for the quarter in which the degree is conferred (see detailed information under Final Quarter Registration).
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university of washington microbiology ranking

  • #6. in Best Universities for Microbiology.
  • #7. in Best Global Universities.

The bachelor’s program at UW Seattle was ranked #29 on College Factual’s Best Schools for microbiology list. It is also ranked #1 in Washington.

Ranking TypeRank
Most Popular Bachelor’s Degree Colleges for Microbiological Sciences & Immunology12
Best Microbiological Sciences & Immunology Doctor’s Degree Schools16
Best Microbiological Sciences & Immunology Bachelor’s Degree Schools17
Most Popular Doctor’s Degree Colleges for Microbiological Sciences & Immunology20
Best Value Doctor’s Degree Colleges for Microbiological Sciences & Immunology20
Most Focused Bachelor’s Degree Colleges for Microbiological Sciences & Immunology47
Most Focused Doctor’s Degree Colleges for Microbiological Sciences & Immunology67
Best Value Bachelor’s Degree Colleges for Microbiological Sciences & Immunology70
Most Popular Master’s Degree Colleges for Microbiological Sciences & Immunology80
Most Focused Master’s Degree Colleges for Microbiological Sciences & Immunology80

Popularity of Microbiology at UW Seattle

During the 2019-2020 academic year, University of Washington – Seattle Campus handed out 67 bachelor’s degrees in microbiological sciences and immunology. Due to this, the school was ranked #11 in popularity out of all colleges and universities that offer this degree. This is a decrease of 22% over the previous year when 86 degrees were handed out.

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uw microbiology major

Major Course Requirements

The following courses are the requirements and options available for students pursuing a degree in Microbiology from the University of Washington, Seattle Campus. For a comprehensive list of requirements and electives, download our course requirements here.


Core Courses (8 Credits):

  • MICROM 410 Fundamentals of Microbiology (3 credits, Fall)
  • MICROM 402 General Microbiology Lab (3 credits, Fall & Spr)
  • MICROM 496 Library Research Paper (2 credits, all qtrs.)


  • Total of 28 credits 
  • Choose one course from each of the four distribution groups (Medical Microbiology, Virology, Diversity and Ecology, Genetics and Molecular Biology)
  • Two courses must contain a laboratory component (411, 431, 443 & 461 are lab choices in this area)

Medical Microbiology:

  • IMMUN 441 Immunology (4 credits, Fall)
  • MICROM 442 Medical Bacteriology (3 credits, Win)
  • MICROM 443 Medical Bacteriology Lab (3 credits, Fall & Win)
  • MICROM 460 Medical Mycology and Parasitology Lecture (3 credits, Spr)
  • MICROM 461 Medical Mycology and Parasitology Lab (2 credits, Spr)


  • MICROM 445 Medical Virology (3 credits, Spr)
  • MICROM 450 Molecular Biology of Viruses (3 credits, Win) ***to be offered Winter 2022***

Diversity and Ecology:

  • MICROM 412 Prokaryotic Diversity (3 credits, Spr)
  • ENV H 409 Microbiome & Environmental Health (3 credits, Spr)
  • MICROM 435 Microbiology of Earth and Human Systems (3 Credits, Aut)

Genetics and Molecular Biology:

  • MICROM 411 Bacterial Genetics. Includes lab (4 credits, Win)
  • MICROM 431 Prokaryotic Recombinant DNA Techniques Lab (3 credits, Win), *

If you choose to take MICROM 431 Prokaryotic Recombinant DNA Techniques Lab (3 credits, Win) you must ALSO take either GENOME 361 Fundamentals of Genetics & Genomics (3 credits) or GENOME 371 Introductory Genetics (5 credits, Fall).

Additional Requirements:Biochemistry
BIOC 405, 406 Introduction to Biochemistry (3 Credits each)OR
BIOC 440, 441, 442 BiochemistryPhysics
PHYS 114, 115 Algebra based Physics (4 Credits each)OR
PHYS 121, 122 Calculus based Physics (5 Credits each)Math
MATH 112 Application of Calculus to Business and Economics (5 Credits)MATH 124 Calculus I (5 Credits)Q SCI 381 Introduction to Probability and Statistics (5 Credits)STAT 311 Elements of Statisical Methods (5 Credits
(One course is required)


Elective credits from the approved list to reach a total of 28 when the distribution areas are satisfied. 

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