The Biomedical Sciences PhD program requires a minimum of 72 credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree, including a minimum total of 27 hours of formal course work exclusive of independent study that are required.
The program requires 23 credit hours of core courses, 12 credit hours of electives, and a minimum of 15 credit hours of dissertation research. The remaining 22 credit hours may consist of additional electives, doctoral research and/or dissertation research. Students with an earned master’s degree may request that up to 30 credit hours of previous course work be waived.
New students will take a two-semester introductory course, participate in laboratory rotations to identify a research area of interest, and take a sequence of required seminars.
deficiencies expected of applicants from diverse settings will be addressed
early in the program by completion of appropriate course work. Students
entering with a master’s degree may request that up to 30 semester credit hours
of previous course work be waived as degree requirements with approval from the
dissertation committee. Students may register for doctoral research until they
have been admitted to candidacy, after which they must register for
New students will take
a two-semester course that provides an introduction to the interdisciplinary
area of biomedical sciences. In addition, a laboratory rotation will allow
students to have a brief but intensive experience working with faculty in at
least two different research laboratories to find a research area of interest
for their dissertation. Finally, a sequence of required seminars will
familiarize students with field-related literature and introduce them to the
conceptual and technical frameworks in which they will work. All students
receiving assistantships must enroll full time.
Required Courses—23 Credit Hours
- BSC 6432 Structure-Function-Relationships of Biomedical Sciences I (5 credit hours)
- BSC 6433 Structure-Function-Relationships of Biomedical Sciences II (5 credit hours)
- IDS 7692L Experiments in Biomedical Sciences (lab rotation) (3 credit hours)
- IDS 7692L Experiments in Biomedical Sciences (lab rotation) (1 credit hour)
- IDS 7690 Frontiers in Biomedical Sciences (four semesters, 1 credit hour each semester)
- BSC 6431 Practice of Biomedical Science (3 credit hours)
- IDS 6694 Experimental Design and Analysis in Biomedical Sciences (2 credit hours)
Elective Courses—12 Credit Hours
At least 12 hours of electives must be taken from the following list. Any electives not on this list must be approved by the Graduate Committee before being counted toward degree credit requirements. Directed research, doctoral research and dissertation research may be used to satisfy requirements beyond the first 12 hours, with approval from the program director.
- BSC 5418 Tissue Engineering (3 credit hours)
- BSC 5436 Biomedical Informatics: Structure Analysis (3 credit hours)
- BSC 6407C Laboratory Methods in Molecular Biology (3 credit hours)
- CAP 5510 Bioinformatics (3 credit hours)
- CHM 5305 Applied Biological Chemistry (3 credit hours)
- CHM 5450 Polymer Chemistry (3 credit hours)
- CHM 5451C Techniques in Polymer Science (3 credit hours)
- CHS 6251 Applied Organic Synthesis (2 credit hours)
- CHS 6535 Forensic Molecular Biology (3 credit hours)
- CHS 6535L Forensic Analysis of Biological Materials (3 credit hours)
- CHS 6536 Forensic Analysis of DNA Data (2 credit hours)
- GEB 5516 Technology Commercialization (3 credit hours)
- IDS 5127 Foundations of Bio-Imaging Science (3 credit hours)
- MCB 5205 Infectious Processes (3 credit hours)
- MCB 5208 Cellular Microbiology: Host-Pathogen Interactions (3 credit hours)
- MCB 5209 Microbial Stress Response (3 credit hours)
- MCB 5225 Molecular Biology of Disease (3 credit hours)
- MCB 5505 Molecular Virology (3 credit hours)
- MCB 5654 Applied Microbiology (3 credit hours)
- MCB 5722C Methods in Biotechnology (4 credit hours)
- MCB 5932 Current Topics in Molecular Biology (3 credit hours)
- MCB 5415 Cellular Metabolism (3 credit hours)
- MCB 6226 Molecular Diagnostics (3 credit hours)
- MCB 6417C Microbial Metabolism (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5025 Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5235 Molecular Immunology (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5236 Cancer Biology (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5238 Immunobiology (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5265 Stem Cell Biology ( 3 credit hours)
- PCB 5275 Signal Transduction Mechanics (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5527 Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5596 Biomedical Informatics: Sequence Analysis (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5665C Human Genetics (4 credit hours)
- PCB 5815 Molecular Aspects of Obesity, Diabetes, and Metabolism (3 credit hours)
- PCB 5838 Cellular and Molecular Basis of Brain Functions (3 credit hours)
- PCB 6528 Plant Molecular Biology (3 credit hours)
- PCB 6585C Advanced Genetics (4 credit hours)
- PCB 6595 Regulation of Gene Expression (3 credit hours)
- PCB 6677 Molecular Evolution and Phylogenetics (3 credit hours)
- ZOO 5748C Clinical Neuroanatomy (3 credit hours)
Unrestricted Electives—22 Credit Hours Minimum
Students should take 22 credit hours of electives, directed research, doctoral research or dissertation research, in consultation with their adviser.
Dissertation—15 Credit Hours Minimum
- IDS 7980 Dissertation Research (15 credit hours)
examinations taken during the second year will determine if students should
continue with their doctoral studies. Exams will be overseen by a cumulative
exam committee. Each exam will consist of questions set by different faculty
members. Questions will deal with data interpretation from the current
literature and the design of experiments to test a hypothesis. A student must
satisfactorily answer cumulative examination questions, displaying a knowledge
base consistent with continuation in the PhD program.
Candidacy will consist of writing and orally defending a proposal outlining a novel research
idea to the dissertation committee. The written proposal will be prepared
independently, following NIH-style grant format, and must be approved by the
dissertation committee (see Biomedical Sciences PhD Program Handbook for full
description of Candidacy Exam requirements and procedures). After passing the
candidacy examination and meeting other requirements as specified, the student can
register for dissertation hours.
Admission to Candidacy
The following are required to be admitted to candidacy and enroll in dissertation hours:
- Successfully complete a minimum of 48 credit hours.
- Successful completion of all course work, except for dissertation hours.
- Successful completion of all examinations (cumulative/qualifying and candidacy).
- Successful defense of the written dissertation proposal.
- The dissertation advisory committee is formed, consisting of approved graduate faculty and graduate faculty scholars.
- Submittal of an approved program of study.
should be of significant scope and depth such that the work has made
significant advances in the area of biomedical science. The PhD dissertation
research must generate sufficient quantity and quality data to support a
minimum of two original manuscripts (first-authored by the student) in a
mainstream journal in the field. At a minimum, one first-author paper must be
published, and a second manuscript should have been submitted and subjected to
Upon completion and
approval of the doctoral dissertation by all designated faculty and university
offices, the student will make a formal presentation of the research findings
in seminar format to the dissertation committee and other university faculty
and students. The candidate will answer questions and defend conclusions about
the subject matter.
For more information,
see the General Guidelines for Alternative Organization in the Thesis and Dissertation Manual of the College of Graduate Studies Thesis and Dissertation office.