Students interested in joining the Cell Biology program should first apply to the combined graduate program in Biological and Biomedical Sciences (BBS), and specifically choose the Molecular Cell Biology, Genetics, and Development (MCGD) track within the BBS program on their applications. An undergraduate major in biology, molecular biology, biochemistry, or any related subject is appropriate. Applicants do not need to meet any special requirement for the Cell Biology program other than the requirements for admission to the BBS program. Further information about the BBS program and an application form can be found at

Students formally enter the Cell Biology program when they join the lab of a Cell Biology faculty member to carry out their thesis research. This decision usually occurs by the end of the first year of graduate school after the student has rotated through 3 different labs of faculty members in the BBS program.

Financial Support

All students admitted to the Cell Biology program, and to the larger BBS program, are given complete financial support, including a 12-month stipend and full tuition, during the entire time they are working toward the Ph.D. degree. Students are supported for the first 3 years usually by NIH training grants and thereafter by their faculty advisors' research grants. A number of students receive fellowships from the NSF and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and students in the first and second years are encouraged to apply for these prestigious awards. A limited number of Yale fellowships are available for outstanding foreign students.

Graduate Student Handbook

This handbook is intended to be a source of information for graduate students studying for the Ph.D. degree in the Department of Cell Biology at Yale.  

Students as well as faculty should be able to find answers to questions that may occur to them from time to time about the Cell Biology Ph.D. program and its specific policies. 

Graduate Student Handbook