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About the Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Graduate Program

Leader in BCB Programs in the U.S.

Iowa State University has been recognized as one of the top Bioinformatics and Computational Biology (BCB) PhD programs in the nation. 

The Iowa State University Bioinformatics and Computational Biology (BCB) Program offers Ph.D. training at the intersections of Biological, Computing and Information Sciences. BCB alums have achieved superior outcomes in the academic, industrial and public sectors.  

The BCB Graduate program is one of the first Bioinformatics and Computational Biology PhD programs in the United States. A history of the BCB program is here.

Administration of the BCB Program

Because BCB is an interdepartmental graduate program, faculty from many departments participate in the program. They contribute their time and energy to mentoring students in the BCB major and to leading the program through administrative roles.  More information on BCB faculty and others involved with the administration of the BCB program can be found here.

Interdisciplinary Research Opportunities

Iowa State University (ISU) has world-class research programs in Statistics, Bioinformatics, and Computational and Information Sciences and Engineering.

Plant, Animal and Microbial Genome Research

Iowa State conducts major plant, animal and microbial genome research projects which are recognized internationally. Many BCB faculty are involved with leadership for these projects.  Christopher Tuggle, BCB faculty member in the Animal Science Department, is co-coordinator of the U.S. Swine Genome Coordination Program which helps develop bioinformatics resources to aid researchers around the nation.  He became co-chair of FAANG in 2015, a large consortium on animal functional genomics (see, and recently received a $2.5M USDA-NIFA grant to generate RNA and epigenetics data for adult, fetal and immune cells to improve functional genome annotation in the domestic pig.

Join the Adventure !

Students can participate in research efforts led by world-class faculty who have interdisciplinary research programs funded by grants which totaled nearly half a billion dollars in 2021, including support from the NSF, NIH (National Institutes of Health), USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

Students in our program develop an independent approach to their studies through an interdisciplinary curriculum. Approximately 100 faculty members from 22 academic departments participate in our program. Students have the opportunity to conduct research in all major research areas of computational molecular biology, including genomics, metagenomics, structural genomics, functional genomics, phylogenetics, and computational systems biology, with access to some of the most modern experimental platforms.

Iowa State - promotes the concept of inclusion and participation

Iowa State values an inclusive environment and has an affirmative action statement in place regarding this.