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Five-year BS/MS Dual-Degree Program

Current undergraduate students who would like to earn both a BS and MS degree may apply to the MGI BS/MS Dual Degree program. This is a research-based program that does not require a thesis. It incorporates graduate level coursework, a multi-year research experience, and a final written and oral report.


  • Third or fourth year UG students in the MGI department currently engaged in research studies.
  • Third or fourth year UG students outside of the MGI department that are engaged in research directed by a member of the MGI faculty. 
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Completion of the equivalent of one or more semesters each of calculus, biological science, inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, physics, and Introductory Microbiology.

Program Requirements:

  • MS research project and plan of study approved by formal guidance committee.
  • minimum of 150 credits (120 cr for the BS and 30 cr for the MS).
  • MS credits will include
    • 8-15 cr of graduate level coursework.
    • 7-15 cr of graduate research.
    • Note: More than half of the credits of the total required for a master's degree must be taken in courses at the 800 and 900 levels except as specifically exempted by the dean of the college.
  • Written and oral research report with examination.

To successfully complete the dual degree program within 5 years, students are encouraged to apply and begin the BS/MS program in their junior year, although senior applicants with strong academic and research experiences are also welcome to apply.

Details of this program are listed on the registrar's site

Interested students should consult with the MGI Undergraduate Academic Advisor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies for more information.

Student Stories

Girl standing in front of ivy-covered wall
Maria Berry

I applied for the MMG Department's BS/MS program because it presented a unique opportunity that was well-suited for my career path and that would greatly enhance my education at Michigan State. 

I have been actively involved in microbiology research for the majority of my undergraduate experience, and I aspire to continue my research career in the future by pursuing a PhD. Involvement in the BS/MS program has taken my undergraduate research to the next level, providing an opportunity to develop skills necessary for success in a research career- not only benchwork and computational biology, but also communicating my work with fellow scientists and the public. This program has allowed me to grow professionally in a familiar research environment, equipping me with both a Master's degree and a skill set that will be useful in my future scientific endeavors.

Maria Berry
Schrenk Lab

Smiling girl wearing a suit
Laura Harris

I was one of the first students to enroll in the combined BS/MS microbiology program at MSU(class of 2000 and 2003). The program provided a strong foundation from which I found my passion for microbial bioinformatics and built a life-long career that I love.

Laura Harris, Ph.D.
Director of Training - ICER
Michigan State University



Smiling girl standing next to research poster
Joanna Colovas

As a first year undergraduate, I began working with Dr. Ashley Shade in her Microbial Ecology laboratory, and I absolutely fell in love with Microbiology and lab work. During my sophomore year, I began minor coursework in Global Public Health and Epidemiology. This is a growing field that uses cross disciplinary approaches to address and solve health problems, like the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Looking at patterns of disease employs the same bioinformatic skills that microbiologists utilize to analyze data, and this overlap is what drew me to the BS/MS program. Thinking about my future, I decided that a Master's Degree was the best fit for my goal of working in Public Health and public education. After watching the world react to COVID-19, I have been incredibly interested in public health, science, and microbiology education for the public.

Joanna Colovas
BS Lyman Briggs Microbiology FS’21
MS Microbiology SS’22