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UF/IFAS Plant Breeding

UF/IFAS Plant Breeding

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some some commonly asked questions to help you better understand our program and assist you with your application to the Plant Breeding Ph.D. program. 

  • Should I contact faculty members I am interested in working with?

    Yes. The program does not accept any student without a sponsoring faculty. You should definitively contact faculty whose interests closely match yours to determine if a mutual interest and an availability of financial support exists. The best way to do this is to browse our list of faculty members, visit the faculty websites of those who share your research interests and contact them directly (via e-mail). Please note that some of our faculty members are stationed in Gainesville (on‐campus) while others are located in research and educational centers (aka REC) in different parts of Florida (off‐campus).

  • How does the Plant Breeding admission process work?

    Individual plant breeding faculty are responsible for initially identifying, evaluating and selecting qualified applicants they would like to support and admit into the PBGP program. Next, the faculty member will nominate this potential candidate to the PBGP Admissions Committee which will then review the applicant's qualifications. The PBGP Admissions Committee may require additional requisites, such as interviews, essays, among other evaluation methods. After a thorough evaluation, the PBGP Admissions Committee will make an offer to selected applicants. Our PBGP committee examines all applications from our pool of applications.

  • How does the Plant Breeding Admission Committee evaluate my application?

    Our Admissions Committee will look for solid research experience, including research and lab experience, good performance in core biology courses, good letters of reference from people who can attest to your potential as a Ph.D. student and publications. Successful applicants typically have a M.S. degree in a related area (plant breeding or closely-related biological area). Undergraduate students with advanced coursework in genetics, statistics, plant breeding, and biochemistry and strong reserach experience are also welcome to apply. 

  • What does the Plant Breeding Graduate Assistantship cover?

    Our assistantships offer a competitive annual stipend, tuition waiver (for 24 credits annually) and health insurance coverage. UF students with a Graduate Assistantship are covered by the University of Florida sponsored GatorGradCare health insurance. Students are mandated by law to have health coverage during the entire year, including annual breaks. Please note that students are responsible for payment of student fees (approximately $2,000 annually) which is separate from tuition at the University of Florida.

  • Are GRE scores required to apply to Plant Breeding?

    No, GRE scores are NOT required.

  • My recommenders are having trouble submitting letters of recommendation online. What can I do?

    You can have your recommenders send their letters in a PDF format directly to Eliana Kampf, PBGP Academic Prog. Specialist II,, copied to Dr. Patricio Munoz, PBGP Director, Note that these letters must be sent directly from the recommenders and not the applicant. Each letter will be verified before being added to an application.  

  • I am an international applicant. Can I be exempt from the English proficiency requirement?

    International applicants are exempt from the English proficiency requirement ONLY if they 1.) have enrolled in one academic year in a degree-seeking program at a recognized/regionally accredited university or college in a country where English is the official language prior to the anticipated term of enrollment at UF, or 2.) are from one of these exempt countries: click HERE.

  • How early should I submit my application materials?

    Please note that certain application materials, like transcripts and test scores, can take anywhere from 24 hours to a few weeks to link to your UF graduate application. Please provide ample time for this to occur before the application deadline.

  • What is the admission timeline for the Plant Breeding graduate program?

    Applications submitted by deadline will be reviewed by the Admission Committee a few weeks after the deadline.

  • Do I really need to send official transcripts to UF?

    Yes. Arrange to have official transcripts sent to the UF Office of Admissions from each postsecondary institution attended. International applicants need to submit an official copy in the native language of each transcript, mark sheet and diploma/degree certificate from each university or college attended, along with certified, literal (exact) English translations for documents not originally issued in English. In case your official transcript is not available when you apply, you may temporarily send Plant Breeding unofficial copies. However, you will only be admitted to UF when all your official documentation has been submitted to the Office of Admissions.

    Office of Admissions
    201 Criser Hall - PO Box 114000
    Gainesville, FL 32611-4000

  • What are my housing options in Gainesville?

    UF offers on-campus housing geared toward graduate students and students with families at one of its (Corry, Diamond, Tanglewood Villages and The Continuum). There is usually a waiting list since these apartments are in high demand. Contact the UF Housing Office as soon as possible for reservations. UF also offers a great guide to those considering off-campus housing: Off Campus Life.