Advanced Inquiry Program

AIP: Program Details

Application Deadline

The application deadline is February 28th of each year for admission in the subsequent summer. All application materials should arrive by February 28.

Master’s Degree Requirements

The Advanced Inquiry Program (AIP) is a part-time, online master’s degree offered by Miami University. The program provides groundbreaking experiential learning and community engagement opportunities on-site at AIP Master Institutions. AIP master’s students earn 35 credit hours in Dragonfly’s web-based learning communities to graduate with this degree, and 21 of those hours have an additional component of experiential face-to-face learning at an affiliated AIP Master Institution in one of nine cities nationwide.

Graduate students in the program may apply to take up to seven credit hours from an Earth Expeditions global field course to count toward their degree.

Students taking AIP courses part-time typically complete the degree in 2.5 years. Students admitted to the program who have not completed at least one university-level life science course or its equivalent will need to complete one of several options (determined by the Dragonfly Graduate Committee) for basic biology content as part of the master’s degree program.

Which Master’s Degree is for me?

Students in the Advanced Inquiry Program may elect to pursue either a Master of Arts in Biology (MA) or a Master of Arts in Teaching in the Biological Sciences (MAT).

Apply to the MAT* if you fall in any of the following categories:

  1. You are certified to teach,
  2. You have an academic degree in education or education-related field (i.e., bachelor’s or master’s), or
  3. You have taught, teach, or plan to teach in a k-12 school or informal education setting (also see FAQ’s on MAT vs. MA).

*This program is not intended to lead to educator certification.  Educators are advised to contact their individual school districts as to whether this program may qualify for salary advancement.

The MA in Biology is a degree option for any applicant with a bachelor’s interested in advancing their career through global leadership, community engagement, and environmental stewardship.

Note: Applicants with no education background should apply for the MA in Biology, not the MAT degree. If you plan to study with the Woodland Park Zoo, click here for degree authorization details from the state of Washington.

See our FAQ: After I graduate, will I be able to find a relevant job? How will I be able to apply my master’s degree to my current job while I’m in the program and then after graduation?

Biology course requirement

All MA in Biology and MAT in Biological Sciences students are required to have completed (receiving a final grade of B- or better) one university-level general biology course or its equivalent prior to completion of their MA/MAT degree. Students admitted to the program who have not previously met this requirement through their undergraduate studies will need to complete such a course before they graduate. The Dragonfly Graduate Committee highly recommends that students complete this requirement within the first two years of the master’s program. More information may be found in the Biology Requirement FAQs and on the Biology through Inquiry webpage.


Bachelor’s degree.

Note: Participants will need to fulfill the minimum Graduate School GPA requirements for admission to the program. For more information, please visit the Graduate School’s Admissions Information.

Transfer Credits

Only the following credits are transferable into the AIP:

  • Up to 7 credits from a past Earth Expeditions field course (with an earned grade of B or higher) may be applied towards the AIP, replacing up to 7 of the 21 AIP W+ course hours required for the degree.
  • Up to 7 credits from past AIP W+ courses taken through Miami University may be applied toward the AIP, replacing up to 7 of the 21 AIP W+ course hours required for the degree.
  • 2 credits from the Core web-based learning community course, Issues in Biodiversity, may be applied toward one’s degree requirements.

Note: No other credits can be transferred into the AIP. No exceptions can be made to the transfer credit policy. See FAQ for additional information.

Project Dragonfly and Miami University

Project Dragonfly reaches millions of people each year through inquiry-driven learning media, public exhibits, and graduate programs worldwide. Project Dragonfly is housed at Miami University, a state university in Oxford, Ohio, established in 1809. Miami, listed as one of the eight original Public Ivies, has established a long and distinguished record of excellence in teaching, research, and service.

Miami University: Equal opportunity in education and employment.