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Doctor of Philosophy in Entomology

The entomology doctoral program focuses on the biology and management of insect and arthropod pests of plants, animals, and humans as well as arthropod vectors that transmit plant pathogens.
Students who complete this program will learn how to conduct in-depth research and effectively communicate findings through both verbal presentations and scientific writing.


The degree plan for a PhD in entomology requires 60 total credit hours of coursework after a thesis based MS degree and 90 total credit hours if a MS degree was not previously matriculated. A program of study can be adapted to an individual's needs within the OSU Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology and Graduate College guidelines. Instruction may include coursework in the following areas and additional courses within and outside the department. 

  • Biological Control
  • Insect Biochemistry
  • Insect Biology and Classification
  • Insect Morphology and Physiology

Research and Faculty

BeesThe Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology is housed in the Noble Research Center. The facilities of the Noble Research Center represent the finest available and give the department excellent resources to accomplish its mission of teaching, research, and extension. There are several on-campus facilities that graduate students will have access to including the DNA Protein Core Facility, Center for Genomics and Proteomics, OSU Microscopy Laboratory, Commercial Research Greenhouses, and Institute for Biosecurity and Microbial Forensics which has faculty directly affiliated with this core facility. Medical/veterinary research is also conducted in the Medical Entomology and field laboratories. Multiple research stations located throughout the state are available to entomology graduate students for their research. A large laboratory and greenhouse research facility, housing the USDA plant sciences program, is also available for cooperative research. Graduate students have access to student offices, Wi-Fi, laboratories for teaching and research, and controlled environment chambers.


The department's faculty includes scientists who have received national and international recognition for their research in many diverse areas.


Meet our Departmental Faculty



Admission requirements for the OSU Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology include:

  • Three letters of recommendation from faculty or professionals familiar with your academic and professional background.
  • A personal letter of intent from the student outlining research interests and professional goals.
  • A résumé or CV for both MS and PhD applicants is required.
  • For the PhD program, a master's degree with a research thesis is required.
  • An official copy of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) score to assist the department in making a determination as to acceptance to the program and funding of an assistantship. The GRE Institution Code for OSU is 6546 (the ENTO/PLP Department Code is 0209). The department reviews GRE scores and evaluates percentage performance among applicants.

Prerequisite Coursework

The following courses are recommended prior to acceptance into the entomology doctoral degree program. A student applicant should have a strong background in biological and/or physical sciences to ensure success in their graduate degree program. The courses required will be based on recommendation of their Advisory Committee.


  1. Introduction to the Science of Entomology or equivalent
  2. Chemistry with lab (three semesters, including at least one semester of Organic Chemistry)
  3. Introductory Biological Science with lab (e.g., Principles of Biology, Plant Biology, Microbiology, Zoology)
  4. Physiology with lab
  5. An Anatomy OR Taxonomy course
  6. Genetics
  7. Statistics and College Calculus
  8. Physics
  9. Biochemistry
  10. Ecology
  11. Genetics
  12. Statistics and/or Experimental Design


Cost and Assistance

For students pursing their Ph.D in the OSU Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology, there are opportunities to perform research duties as a Graduate Research Assistant under the direction of a major advisor for at least twenty (20) hours per week. These required positions are opportunities for students to hold a semi-professional position within the department. The purposes of assistantships are to support programs of instruction, research and Extension in the department and to provide employment opportunities that contribute to the professional development of graduate students.


Cost and Aid

Assistantships and Funding Opportunities

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