Environmental Microbiology Group Environmental Microbiology Group

Dear Potential graduate student

We wish to provide you the information required to enroll in our graduate program. We accept both Mexican citizens and foreign nationals for the degrees M.Sc (Master in Science) and D.Sc. (Doctor in Science) both granted by the Federal Government of Mexico via our institute CIBNOR (the Northwest Center for Biological Research), which is located in the city of La Paz, Baja California Sur, Mexico. We accept also M.Sc. and Ph.D. granted by other institutes and universities that prepare their research and thesis with us.

Our research group (Environmental Microbiology) is a home for the thesis work of our students who are mainly registered with the CIBNOR graduate school (exceptions to our graduate school will be explained later). The formal classes and other academic requirements are managed by Posgrado (the graduate program) of CIBNOR. Currently, for doctoral and Master students, our research group has three available advisors. We do not accept B.Sc. students.

CIBNOR’s graduate school provides detailed information about the school that can be viewed at its site:
https://www.cibnor.gob.mx/posgrados/oferta-educativa . Detailed requirement for foreign students are listed below and were provided by the director of the graduate school.

The information about our group, its research project, past research and our publications is presented at the site:

The beginning of the studies of each type of thesis varied:

  1. M.Sc. Starts annually in August. However, the admission examinations are carried out twice a year in La Paz in early January and June. Foreign students may present the record of their examinations (GRE-Graduate Record Examinations) and TOEFL (English) in their home country and must provide the official transcripts (Record) to the graduate school (see below for details).

  2. D.Sc. Starts annually with entrance examination timing varied (Usually in April-May). In addition to the M.Sc. requirements, there is a personal interview with the candidate in La Paz by the CIBNOR admission committee. This interview evaluates the general research proposal of the candidate and therefore, it is essential that the candidate will be in close contact with the potential advisor to prepare the required presentation. This requirement cannot be waived.


Mexican nationals may receive a competitive scholarship/fellowship for two years (at the M.Sc. level) and up to 4 years (at the D.Sc. level) upon availability (varies annually). These scholarships are granted and managed by Posgrado. The research groups (like ours) do not have enough research funds nor permission to grant full scholarships. Foreign students must obtained full funds for their studies from their home country or via international funding agencies. Limited funds are available via the Secretary of Foreign Affairs office of Mexico.

Important issues - Internal policy of the Environmental Microbiology group

  1. Be aware that although our group is routinely managed in Spanish and English, the formal classes at the graduate school are given in Spanish and a reasonable command of the language is required to attend them.

  2. We do not accept students for D.Sc without an approved M.Sc degree that include a research thesis in biological sciences.

  3. Our research group does not provide partial employment, transportation, or other personal and official expenses during the process of registering as a new graduate student.

  4. The Environmental Microbiology Group accepts graduate students for research activities that are registered in other graduate schools (Mexican and foreign). However, the minimal research period for these students within the group is one year for the M.Sc. and two years for the D.Sc. It is required that the research expenses of the student should be discussed with the advisor of the registered institute.

  5. The Environmental Microbiology Group accepts proposals of theses of graduate students only on active projects of the group with external funding. Please consult our project’s sections : http://bashanfoundation.org/gmaweb/idoing.html and http://bashanfoundation.org/gmaweb/iprojects.html.

Administrative requirements as a foreign applicant

(Provided by the director of the graduate school of CIBNOR)

  • Candidates for the Masters or Doctoral Programs should send a complete application to Departamento de Control Escolar (Registrar’s Office) with the required documents listed and attached before the due date of the respective Call for Registration.

  • *The certificate and professional title should be authenticated by the closest embassy or consulate of Mexico in the country of origin.

  • *Show an official translation of the required documents, verified by a Public Notary; and Validation of Studies by Secretaría de Educación Pública (Mexican Ministry of Education www.sre.gob.mx)

  • *Have a scholarship assigned to cover tuition, living expenses, and have medical insurance (check webpage of Secretaría de Relaciones Exteriores de México for possible scholarships).

  • *Student visa, immigration form FM9 or FM2 from Secretaría de Gobernación, which credits your legal stay in the country (go to Instituto Nacional de Inmigración Mexicano, Office of Secretaría de Gobernación www.inm.gob.mx).

  • Show results of GRE (only a General Examination), as well as TOEFL results, in case your native language is not English. Show proof of Spanish language competency, in case your native language is not Spanish in a personal interview or through an official document.

  • Doctoral candidates must be accepted by the corresponding Admission Committee in a personal interview.

List of Required Documents for Graduate Students

The required documents for your file are as follows:
  • Letter of Application. Also list purpose and degree to be obtained, showing special field and justifying reasons for preference.
  • Curriculum Vitae.
  • Photocopy of birth certificate (originals only to check against the photocopies).
  • Photocopy of professional degree.
  • Photocopy of the certificate of professional studies and Master of Science.
  • Written evidence of a medical exam performed by an authorized medical clinic.
  • Four front-view black-and-white ID photos.
  • Proof document of a Master of Science in a field related to biological sciences.
  • Letter of opinion and recommendation from a well known researcher.
  • Thesis project, showing background, introduction, methodology, objectives, goals and activity calendar
  • Letter of Commitment of the nominated Thesis Director and candidate’s acceptance of the terms.
  • Personal interview with the Admission Committee.

Principles of presentation: An instruction manual on formatting research papers to international standards
Estudiantes e Investigadores:
Por más de 15 años, fui editor de inglés científico en el Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste, S.C. En este puesto, trabajé con cientos de estudiantes e investigadores para que sus manuscritos fueran aceptables para su publicación en revistas internacionales. El trabajo fue un reto gratificante, ya que al final la sensación del trabajo realizado fue que sin mi apoyo muchos estudiantes no lograrían su meta de publicar. Ahora, jubilado, quiero ofrecer a la comunidad científica, en forma sencilla y clara, técnicas que todos los autores necesitan conocer para que su trabajo sea más profesional a la vista de los editores y revisores pares de las revistas científicas objetivo de sus trabajos.

Este manual representa lo que he aprendido sobre presentación de reportes científicos en mis años como Editor en el CIBNOR, así como por mi experiencia en edición y docencia en los Estados Unidos. A saber, no hay otra publicación disponible de este estilo que cubra mucho del contenido de este manual. Este documento que ahora le presento, es el conjunto de instrucciones necesarias que los investigadores mexicanos (e hispanoparlantes) requieren seguir, no solo para mejorar sus presentaciones científicas sino también para reducir el estrés y el tiempo que les toma preparar artículos de investigación científica. Esperando que este documento sea de su interés y agrado, agradezco su amable atención. Saludos cordiales.

Ira Fogel.