Degree Requirements

Ph.D. Program in Pharmaceutical Sciences (Pharmacology & Toxicology Track)

The programs of study are individualized to meet the needs of each student. All students take “core” courses in pharmacology, toxicology, methods in pharmacology/toxicolgy, statistics, molecular biology, communication skills, and grant writing. Additional courses are available in specific areas of study. Skills in communicating scientific data orally are developed through participation in a weekly seminar program.


Progression

A student’s acceptance into Ph.D. candidacy is dependent on the successful oral defense of a student-prepared research proposal, oral exams and intensive laboratory projects. The student will choose an adviser after completing one semester in the graduate program. The student and the adviser will select a “master’s level” research project. By the end of the first calendar year in the program, the student will submit a preproposal to a selected research committee on the topic of research to be conducted during the second year. The student must complete the research project and submit a manuscript reporting the data to the research committee by the end of the spring semester of the student’s second year.

During the summer of the second year, the student will prepare a detailed NIH style grant proposal on the anticipated dissertation research topic. This proposal will be submitted to a faculty selected examining committee by the last day of the summer session. A comprehensive oral exam must be scheduled within one month. This exam, which involves both a defense of the written proposal and the demonstration of an adequate knowledge base of basic science, will be administered by the student’s examining committee.

Satisfactory completion of these requirements, along with a letter grade of B or better in all required graduate courses, allows the student to enter Ph.D. candidacy.

All students are required to prepare and defend a dissertation (Ph.D.) based upon original research. This constitutes the major effort of the graduate program which can be completed in four years.


Curriculum Sequence and Milestones

This schedule is intended to help standardize the curriculum for all students entering the program, but individual schedules may be slightly altered due to various circumstances. Changes may be made as deemed necessary, with the approval of the student’s Supervising Professor and the Pharm/Tox Academic Advisor.  The following is a summary of the curriculum.  For a detailed curriculum and additional requirements, please visit the Pharmacology & Toxicology division handbook (pdf).

 YEAR 1

FALL
PGS 196S Division Seminar
PGS 189Q Seminar in Alcohol (Neuropharmacology Track) or PGS 196T Toxicology Seminar (Toxicology Track)
Basic Science Elective I (Both Tracks) or PGS 384K Fundamentals in Toxicology (Toxicology Track)
PGS 196H Lab Research or rotation

SPRING
PGS 386D Cellular & Systems Physiology II
PHR 388K Basic Principles in Experimental Design & Statistics
PHR 191Q Pharmacy and its Disciplines
PGS 196S Division Seminar
PGS 189Q Seminar in Alcohol (Neuropharmacology Track) or PGS 196T Toxicology Seminar (Toxicology Track)
Basic Science Elective II (Both Tracks) or PGS 384L Biochemical and Molecular Tox (Toxicology Track)
PGS 196H Lab Research or Rotation
* Milestone: Select supervising professor by end of spring semester

SUMMER
PGS 487Q Communication Skills for Scientists
PGS 196H Lab Research


YEAR 2

FALL
PGS 380F Biomedical Pharmacology I
PGS 383D Neuropharmacology (Neuropharmacology Track) or PGS 384K Fundamental Toxicology or Elective I (Toxicology Track)
PGS 185D Responsible Conduct of Research
PGS 185G Grant Writing
PGS 196S Division Seminar
PGS 189Q Seminar in Alcohol (Neuropharmacology Track) or PGS 196T Toxicology Seminar (Toxicology Track)
Lab Research

SPRING
PGS 380G Biomedical Pharmacology II
PGS 388K Pharmacol Mech Addiction (Neuropharmacology Track) or PGS 384L Biochemical and Molecular Tox or Elective II
PGS 196S Division Seminar Participation
PGS 189Q Seminar in Alcohol (Neuropharmacology Track) or PGS 196T Toxicology Seminar (Toxicology Track)
PGS 196H Lab Research
* Milestone: Student works on draft of NIH-style proposal (NRSA) in preparation for qualifying examination

SUMMER
PGS 196H Lab Research
* Milestones: Prepare and write qualifying exam


YEAR 3 (and subsequent long semesters)

FALL
* Milestone: Qualifying Exam (first week of September)
PGS 196S Division Seminar
PGS 189Q Seminar in Alcohol (Neuropharmacology Track) or PGS 196T Toxicology Seminar (Toxicology Track)
PGS 196H Lab Research

SPRING
PGS 196S Division Seminar
PGS 189Q Seminar in Alcohol (Neuropharmacology Track) or PGS 196T Toxicology Seminar (Toxicology Track)
PGS 196H Lab Research
* Milestones: Qualifying examination; enter candidacy

 


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