Skip to main content

Online Application

Our online application for Fall 2023 is now closed.

Our applications for Fall 2023 are currently in review. Many applications will not result in an offer; some reasons why are discussed here by Stephanie Richards, Assistant Director for Recruitment.

Admissions Timeline and Instructions

Admission to the IGP is granted for the Fall semester only. There are no spring admissions.

August 1 Online Application available online for the following Fall semester
December 1 Deadline for applications
January-March On-campus interviews for selected candidates
April 15 Deadline for candidates to accept offers to the graduate programs


1. The above link takes you to the Vanderbilt Graduate School application and you have to specify which program within the Graduate School you are applying.

  • Under Area of Study, select “Biomedical and Biological Sciences” or “Interdisciplinary Programs”.
  • From the Program Selection menu, select the “IGP in Biomedical and Biological Sciences”.

2. The final submission date is December 1. Only completed applications will be reviewed. An application is complete after

  • it is “Officially Submitted” (per step 3 of the application instructions)
  • AND all supporting documents have been submitted. These include transcripts and recommendation letters

3. There is a $95 application fee. ALL individuals who have performed research funded by a US entity will be granted an automatic fee waiver. There are a number of other circumstances that will qualify for a fee waiver; please read below for more information about fee waivers.

4. All applicants who are not selected to interview will be notified in March.

Application FAQs

Unfortunately, this cannot be changed for your submitted names, even administratively. The only way to change this is to delete your recommender(s) and add them back in. You can do this before or after you submit your application.

Wonderful! Yes, we imagine that a majority of our applicants will qualify for the waiver; don’t be surprised! All you have to do is to check “yes” on the question regarding funded research on the “Experience” tab and you will not be asked to pay a fee. There is no code and no documentation needed!

No, We are happy to accept unofficial transcripts in evaluating your application.

NO! Neither the general GRE exam, which includes the Verbal, Quantitative and Analytic sections, nor the subject tests are required for admission. If you have taken the GRE and would like to include it in your application, you may do so and the admissions committee will consider it in their holistic review. The GRE Institution Code is 1871. The GRE Department Code for this program is 0202 (No department code is necessary, but you may use 0202 if you are required to enter one).

No. There are no minimum GPA or TOEFL/IELTS requirements. When reviewing applications, we consider the entire application package, including previous research experience.

TOEFL scores are required for international applicants; however, this requirement can be waived if you have received a degree where the primary language of the country is English-speaking. This may take up to 24 hours to be processed within a day after completing your application. Feel free to e-mail with any questions.

Yes! A CV or resume is not required for the application. However, if you would like to upload one, you will see a place to upload it under “Experiences”. We would be happy to review this with your application, but it is not required or expected. Please still complete the “Experiences” tab of the application, even if you upload a CV or resume.

This is used for a fee waiver. We are happy to accept any document that shows you have received a Pell grant.

We have very flexible expectations for this; however, we generally recommend you keep your statement between 1-2 pages single spaced. This is just a general suggestion and if your statement does not fit in this range, that is fine!

Yes, you can submit your application before your letters arrive and they will still be matched with your application. We will only review a completed application (3 letters submitted). We do require your application to be complete by the deadline, so please continue to monitor this progress.

Please read this closely; all individuals who have performed research funded by a US entity will be granted an automatic fee waiver.

Application Fee

The Graduate School application fee is $95.00.

  • After you submit your application online, you will see instructions to pay the fee with a credit or debit card via a secure payment portal.
  • If you submit applications to more than one program (maximum of two per year), only a single fee will be charged.
  • In addition to fee waivers being granted based on the criteria below, a small number of additional waivers will be granted at the discretion of the program and school based on recruitment priorities.
  • If you are not covered by any of the categories listed below but feel your circumstances may warrant a fee waiver, please contact us at We will be happy to discuss your situation and direct you to the appropriate person.

A candidate’s eligibility for admission will not be impacted by an application for or receipt of a fee waiver.

Application Fee Waiver Eligibility

In accordance with the interests of the US congress and its commitment to training well qualified and highly diverse students for careers in the biomedical sciences, fee waivers can be obtained for any student who has performed biological or biomedically-oriented research which has been supported by the NIH, the NSF, or any other agency or private foundation within the US. If this applies to you, your waiver will be processed within the application itself; simply check “yes” to the question that asks if you’ve performed US-funded research. E-mail Stephanie Richards ( if you have any questions!

Additional waivers of the application fee will be considered upon request for US citizens and US permanent residents1 if they have a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.0 in their last program of enrollment AND meet at least one of the criteria below:

  • Demonstrated financial need in the past year (Pell Grant eligibility).
  • Participated in a designated Vanderbilt-sponsored program/activity in the past three years (see below*).
  • Participated in a designated fellowship, research, or training program in the past three years (see below**).
  • Current or former member of the United States Armed Forces.

1US permanent residents must provide proof of this status, such as a copy of a Green Card – Permanent Resident Card.  International applicants attending US colleges and universities are also eligible to apply for a fee waiver.

Extenuating circumstances
Students with extenuating circumstances can apply for waiver; explanation with documentation must be provided with application.

*Vanderbilt Sponsored Programs
Students that are members of the following VU sponsored programs are eligible for a fee waiver.

  • Fisk-Vanderbilt Master’s-to-PhD Bridge Program
  • Vanderbilt NSF REU in Chemical Biology
  • Vanderbilt NSF REU in Nanoscale Science and Engineering
  • Vanderbilt NSF REU in Physics
  • Vanderbilt Summer Science Academy
  • Vanderbilt National Name Exchange (NNE) Diversity Fair
  • Vanderbilt-hosted recruitment event
  • VU-EDGE Pre-VU PhD Recruitment Event

**Fellowship, Research, and Training Programs
Students that are members of the following VU-associated Fellowship, Research, and Training Programs are eligible for a fee waiver. Documentation demonstrating that student is/was member of the  VU-associated program must accompany the waiver request:

  • California Polytechnic State University, Pomona Undergraduate Research Program
  • Dozoretz National Institute for Mathematics and Applied Sciences (DNIMAS)
  • Gates Millennium Scholars Program (GMSP)
  • Initiative to Maximize Student Development (IMSD)
  • Leadership Alliance Summer Research Early Identification Program (SR-EIP)
  • Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP)
  • NIH/NIGMS Maximizing Access to Research Careers (MARC)
  • Mellon Mays Minority Undergraduate Fellowship Program (MMUF)
  • National Name Exchange (NNE)
  • Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement Program (RISE)
  • Ronald McNair Scholars Program
  • The National Consortium for Graduate Degrees for Minorities in Engineering and Science (GEM fellows and associate fellows)
  • University of Baltimore Maryland County Meyerhoff Scholars Program
  • University of Central Florida Academic Advancement Programs

Please visit our graduate school application fee information website for more information.

Vanderbilt University welcomes applications from all individuals who come from diverse populations that are under-represented in science or academia, including but not limited to racial and ethnic minorities, individuals from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds, and individuals with physical disabilities.