Master’s in Passing

Master’s in Passing

The Biological Design Graduate Program offers a Master’s in Passing (MIP) to students who decide to complete a Master’s degree.  The Supervisory Committee or comprehensive exam committee can also recommend the student pursue a Master’s in Passing, if they have determined the student cannot continue on with the Ph.D.  The degree that will appear on the student’s transcript is a Master of Science (MS) in Biological Design.

Should the student decide to pursue a Master’s in Passing, he/she must get approval from their Supervisory Committee and the Program Director.  The student must write an abstract for their proposed Master’s thesis and submit a Master’s in Passing Approval form to the Graduate Advisor.  This paperwork must be submitted prior to the semester the student plans on graduating.  The student also needs to submit a new iPOS for the MS to the Office of Graduate Education, including specific coursework and a committee.

To earn a Master’s in Passing, the student must complete 36 total credit hours including 6 hours of BDE 599 Thesis during the semester the student plans to graduate from the MIP. The student may have the following courses listed on their Master’s in Passing iPOS:

  • BDE 692, Research Rotations
  • BDE 792, Research
  • Specialized Disciplinary Graduate Courses
  • BDE 599 Thesis


The student must complete a written Master’s thesis and an oral defense of the thesis before the Supervisory Committee. Once the student is ready to start writing their Master’s thesis, they should review the Format Manual, and refer to the automatic formatting tool provided by the Office of Graduate Education.