How to Apply

Application Information

VMPM Admission Criteria

  • Applicants must be graduates of an accredited institution and should rank in the top quartile of their class.
  • Transcript records should reveal a strong background in biological sciences; preferably including biochemistry, biology, calculus, chemistry, genetics, immunology, microbiology, physics and physiology.
  • The MS degree is not a prerequisite for the PhD program.
  • To pursue the MS degree in Veterinary Preventive Medicine or PhD in microbiology with a Preventive Medicine Emphasis, applicants must have a DVM or an equivalent degree.


  • The Dept. does not requires applicants to complete the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test. The inclusion of GRE scores is optional. An advanced test in biology is strongly recommended. 
  • TOEFL scores must accompany your admission application if your native language is not English, or if your bachelor's degree was earned at a university where the language of instruction was not English. A total TOEFL score of 550 is the minimum required by VMPM.
  • A statement of purpose must be included in application materials. This is a one or two page summary or your career goals and research interests.

Deadlines & Timeline

All application materials must be received by February 1 for those requesting admission and financial aid for Fall Semester.

Faculty Nomination

Qualified applicants will be accepted into the program only after the graduate student has been accepted by a major professor. Potential applicants are encourage to research the Veterinary Microbiology and Preventive Medicine faculty and contact those with similar research interest prior to submitting an application.

Research Areas

Submitting Your Application

Students who wish to pursue graduate education leading to an MS or PhD must complete the process of admission as specified by BOTH the Graduate College at Iowa State University and the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Preventive Medicine (VMPM).

ISU Graduate College Admissions Process

All applications for admission should be directed to

US application

International application 

Graduate Admissions Office
100 Enrollment Services Center
Iowa State University
Ames, Iowa, 50011 

Graduate Assistantships and Fellowships

Admittance of students into the program is dependent on the availability of a Major Professor and a Laboratory willing to accept and provide financial support. Assistantships are limited and are funded through research grants of the major professor, making it necessary to match applicants with faculty before acceptance into our graduate program. 

Most assistantship and fellowship decisions are made by mid-April. To have the best chance of qualifying for financial support, your application (including transcripts and letters of recommendation) must be received by February 1 for admission to the Fall Semester.

Helpful Links

Grad. College Assistantship Info.

Tuition and fees for graduate school

Testing Contacts

GRE Toll-free number: 1-800-537-3160

GRE Web site:

TOEFL testing

Web site: