Graduate Program Application Requirements

Structural Biology Department is one of the 14 Stanford Biosciences PhD programs, the program accepts applications once per year for the Autumn quarter entry. Before applying, please visit and review general admissions information from the following websites:

Application Deadline 

Deadline for application submission: Tuesday, December 5, 2023 (11:59:59 pm PST). All applications must be submitted by this deadline through the Stanford Graduate Admissions Apply webpage. Late applications will not be accepted.

Home Program Selection 

Applicants can choose up to two home programs, and should apply to the Structural Biology home program as described on the Biosciences “How to Apply” web page.

Interview/Visit Days

Wednesday - Sunday, March 6 - 10, 2024

The committee will begin contacting applicants who have been selected for an interview early January. The selected applicants will be invited to an in-person interview session visit. In general, if an applicant has not heard about a possible invitation by mid-February, it is unlikely that they will be invited to Stanford.


  1. A Bachelor's Degree, having completed at least one year's course work in biology, mathematics, organic chemistry, physical chemistry, and physics. The department is particularly interested in students who have carried out original research during their undergraduate studies.

  2. GRE® (Graduate Record Examination®) General Test and Subject Test are both not considered.

  3. TOFEL requirements please see here. The Stanford Educational Testing Service (ETS) institutional code is 4704. Individual department code numbers are not necessary.  Foreign applicants whose first language is not English are required to submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) taken within the last two years. Exemptions are granted to applicants who have earned (or will earn, before enrolling at Stanford) a U.S. bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree from a college or university accredited by a regional accrediting association in the United States, or the international equivalent degree from a university of recognized standing in a country in which all instruction is provided in English.

  4. The Application Fee is $125.00 for all applicants. The acceptable form of payment is via credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, JCB, Discover, and Diners Club) or bank transfer from a U.S. checking account. The application fee is non-refundable and must be received by the application deadline. Applicants with eligibility may consider applying for a fee waiver, which must be submitted 10 business days (two weeks) prior to the application deadline. 

  5. Scanned copies of Transcripts from every postsecondary institution the applicant has attended must be uploaded into your application for completion. Graduate Admissions only requires admitted applicants who accept the offer of admission to submit Official Transcripts that shows their degree conferral. More details on this can be found on the following Graduate Admissions Transcripts webpage. Please do not send or have sent any official transcripts to the Biosciences Admissions Office.

  6. All Recommendations must be submitted using the online application system. Three letters of recommendation are required. As part of the online application, you will be required to register the names and contact information, including e-mail addresses, of your recommenders. Recommenders will then receive an e-mail with directions on how to proceed. Letters of recommendation cannot be mailed, emailed, faxed, or submitted through a letter service (with the exception of Interfolio). For letters submitted via Interfolio, please remember that letters written specifically for your Stanford graduate program tend to be stronger than letters written for general use purposes.

Checking Application Status

To check your application status, please go here and click the Visit Your Status Page button at the bottom (the button is only active when the applicaiton period is open).

Decisions & Notifications

The Admissions Committee will start to review applicant files a few days following the application deadline. It is important that all of your application materials are submitted by the deadline. The committee will contact applicants who have been selected for the interview/visit days on campus at the program's expense. Applicants who are not selected for an interview will receive a notification that states no further action will be taken on their application.

For more information, please visit:

The Structural Biology Department recognizes that the Supreme Court issued a ruling in June 2023 about the consideration of certain types of demographic information as part of an admission review. All applications submitted during upcoming application cycles will be reviewed in conformance with that decision.

The Structural Biology Department welcomes graduate applications from individuals with a broad range of life experiences, perspectives, and backgrounds who would contribute to our community of scholars. The review process is holistic and individualized, considering each applicant’s academic record and accomplishments, letters of recommendation, prior research experience, and admissions essays to understand how an applicant’s life experiences have shaped their past and potential contributions to their field and how they might enrich the learning community at Stanford.

Stanford Biosciences PhD Admissions


Kathleen Guan
Graduate Programs
Biophysics & Structural Biology
Alway Building, Room M116I
Stanford, CA 94305
Phone: (650) 723-7576

Amy Lin
Graduate Programs
Biophysics & Structural Biology
Alway Building, Room M116I
Stanford, CA 94305
Phone: 650-498-8179

Please note that our office will be closed on Thursday, November 23 - Friday, November 24, 2023 for Thanksgiving, and Thursday, December 21, 2023 - Wednesday, January 3, 2024 during Winter Closure.