Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

The graduate program in Biochemistry offers students the training necessary for them to conduct independent biochemical research in an academic, industrial, or clinical environment.  The Biochemistry curriculum is designed to provide a synergistic series of formal courses, seminars, teaching opportunities, and individualized biochemical research experiences in the laboratories of participating faculty.  Students are encouraged to broaden their scientific experience by taking courses in other biomedical science tracks. 

Biochemistry Admissions Requirements

Applicants are required to have a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution and a minimum GPA of 3.0/4.0.  Applicants should have received credit for courses taken in:

  • Biology1 2 yrs. as required for science majors
  • Chemistry1 1 yr. general chemistry and organic chemistry
  • Physics 1 yr.
  • Mathematics minimum of 1 semester of calculus
1

courses should include laboratory experience


All applicants must take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). The GRE must be taken within the last 5 years and the TOEFL within the last 2 years. There is no minimum score required for the GRE. In addition to the GRE, international applicants are also required to take one of two English proficiency tests: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS: Academic module only). The minimum required scores for the TOEFL are 560 for the paper test and 68 for the internet test. The minimum score on the academic IELTS is 6.5.

Three letters of recommendation are required. The applicant must submit 3 essays stating the reasons for your interest in the program, a description of your professional goals and an outline of your undergraduate, industrial or summer research. On campus recruitment interviews are conducted during February and March. Phone interviews for international application occur in January and February.

The admission committee makes its decision based on the candidate’s research experience, grade point average, personal statement, GRE score, interviews, letters of recommendations, and how the candidate matches up against other interested applicants.

Biochemistry Degree Requirements

A minimum of 72 credit hours and a minimum overall GPA of 3.0 is required for the Ph.D. degree.  In addition, all doctoral candidates must register for the BIOC 7099 Dissertation for at least two semesters in order to graduate; only one of the terms may be a summer session.  The student is required to demonstrate intellectual command of the subject area of the graduate program and capability to carry out independent and original investigation in the area. The student must successfully defend a dissertation and be recommended by their program COGS for approval of their degree to the Dean of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. 

Biochemistry Plans of Study

Students Entering 2015 and Alternate Years Thereafter

First Year
FallCredit Hours
IBMS 5000Fundamentals Of Biomedical Sciences (Fundamentals of Biomedical Sciences) 8
IBMS 5008Lab Rotations (Laboratory Rotation) 2
Spring
BIOC 6036Macromolecular Structure & Mechanism 2
BIOC 5085Biophysical Methods In Biology 2
IBMS 5008Lab Rotations (Laboratory Rotation) 2
INTD 6002Ethics In Research 0.5
Electives  2.5
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 4
Second Year
Fall
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Spring
BIOC 6037Integration Of Metabolic Pathways 2
BIOC 5087Molecular Genetics And Biotechnology 1
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Electives  2-3
May: Oral Ph.D. Qualifying Exam  
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Third Year
Fall
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
Spring
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
Dissertation Research Proposal Seminar  
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Fourth Year
Fall
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 1 2
Review Presentation by 4th year students  
Spring
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Fifth Year
Fall
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
Spring
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
 Total Credit Hours: 108.0-122.0
1

Journal club will include Contemporary Biochemistry

 Students Entering in 2016 and Alternate Years Thereafter

First Year
FallCredit Hours
IBMS 5008Lab Rotations (Lab Rotations) 2
IBMS 5000Fundamentals Of Biomedical Sciences (Fundamentals of Biomedical Sciences) 8
Spring
BIOC 6037Integration Of Metabolic Pathways 2
BIOC 5087Molecular Genetics And Biotechnology 1
IBMS 5008Lab Rotations (Lab Rotations) 2
INTD 6002Ethics In Research .5
Electives  3.5
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Second Year
Fall
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
BIOC 6097Research 1-9
Spring
BIOC 6036Macromolecular Structure & Mechanism 2
BIOC 5085Biophysical Methods In Biology 2
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Electives  2
May: Oral Ph.D. Qualifying Exam  
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Third Year
Fall
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
Spring
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
Dissertation Research Proposal Seminar  
Presentation to Department and Committee  
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Fourth Year
Fall
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 1 2
Review Presentation by 4th year students  
Spring
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
Fifth Year
Fall
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 1 2
Spring
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
BIOC 6029MBB Journal Club and Student Research Presentations 2
Summer
BIOC 6097Research 1-12
 Total Credit Hours: 115.0-127.0
1

Journal club will include Contemporary Biochemistry

Biochemistry Objectives/Program Outcomes

  1. Review/interpret research literature
  2. Communicate effectively in writing
  3. Communicate effectively in verbal presentations
  4. Display potential for conducting independent research