Typical Coursework Schedule for the Biomedical Sciences PhD

The typical core and track-specific coursework schedule for Years 1 and 2 of the Biomedical Sciences PhD degree is seen here.

For each option or track, the minimum number of elective credits required is shown. In consultation with their Dissertation Adviser, students may take additional credits. Since electives are taken during various semesters depending on when classes of interest are offered, the times for elective credits are not shown. Elective credits can include BMS 500 Foundations of Biomedical Research. BMS 596, beyond the 2 credits of the “Core Requirement,” do not count toward elective credits. BMS 600, 601, 610, or 611 credits do not count toward required elective credits.

All BMS students sign up for one credit of BMS 590 each Spring. Students who have not passed the comprehensive examination sign up for a grade. Students who have passed the comprehensive examination sign up for Audit.

BMS Program Track

  • 17 core requirement credits
  • 2 BMS required credits
  • 10 elective credits

Fall Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 502 Cell and Systems Biology (3)
  • BMS 503 Flow of Cellular Information (3)
  • BMS 504 Art of Scientific Communication I (1)

Spring Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 505 Art of Scientific Communication II (1)
  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

At the end of Year 1, students take the candidacy examination, make a final decision regarding their Program or Option, and enter their dissertation research lab.

Fall Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 591 Ethics (1)
  • BMS 596 Individual Study: Research (2)
  • BMS 801 Writing Grant Proposals for Biomedical Research (1)

Option-Specific

  • Colloquium (1)

Spring Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • Colloquium (1)

The Colloquium requirements for the BMS Program Track can be satisfied by BCHEM 590, PSIO 501, PHARM 590, MICRO 590, MICRO 572 or VIRIM 580.

BMG Option Track (Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics)

  • 17 core requirement credits
  • 10 BMG option required credits
  • 2 elective credits

Fall Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 502 Cell and Systems Biology (3)
  • BMS 503 Flow of Cellular Information (3)
  • BMS 504 Art of Scientific Communication I (1)

Spring Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 505 Art of Scientific Communication II (1)
  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • BCHEM 522 Molecular Genetics: Genes to Genomes (3)
  • BMS 512 Data Analysis for the Biomedical Lab Scientist (2)

At the end of Year 1, students take the candidacy examination, make a final decision regarding their Program or Option, and enter their dissertation research lab.

Fall Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 591 Ethics (1)
  • BMS 596 Individual Study: Research (2)
  • BMS 801 Writing Grant Proposals for Biomedical Research (1)

Option-Specific

  • BCHEM 590 Colloquium (1)
  • BCHEM 521 Structure, Function and Regulation of Biological Molecules (3)

Spring Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • BCHEM 590 Colloquium (1)

CIP Option Track (Cellular and Integrative Physiology)

  • 17 core requirement credits
  • 11 CIP option required credits
  • 1 elective credit

Fall Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 502 Cell and Systems Biology (3)
  • BMS 503 Flow of Cellular Information (3)
  • BMS 504 Art of Scientific Communication I (1)

Spring Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 505 Art of Scientific Communication II (1)
  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • PSIO 504 Cellular and Integrative Physiology (3)

At the end of Year 1, students take the candidacy examination, make a final decision regarding their Program or Option, and enter their dissertation research lab.

Fall Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 591 Ethics (1)
  • BMS 596 Individual Study: Research (2)
  • BMS 801 Writing Grant Proposals for Biomedical Research (1)

Option-Specific

  • PSIO 501 Scientific Analysis and Presentation (1)

Spring Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • PSIO 501 Scientific Analysis and Presentation (1)
  • BMS 581 Molecular and Translational Approaches to Human Disease (3)
  • PSIO 505 Cellular and Integrative Physiology II (3)

TT Option Track (Translational Therapeutics)

  • 17 core requirement credits
  • 11 TT option required credits
  • 1 elective credit

Fall Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 502 Cell and Systems Biology (3)
  • BMS 503 Flow of Cellular Information (3)
  • BMS 504 Art of Scientific Communication I (1)

Spring Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 505 Art of Scientific Communication II (1)
  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • PHARM 520 Principles of Drug Action (2)

At the end of Year 1, students take the candidacy examination, make a final decision regarding their Program or Option, and enter their dissertation research lab.

Fall Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 591 Ethics (1)
  • BMS 596 Individual Study: Research (2)
  • BMS 801 Writing Grant Proposals for Biomedical Research (1)

Option-Specific

  • PHARM 551 Anti-Infective Therapeutics (1)
  • PHARM 552 Integrated Systems Pharmacology (1)
  • PHARM 553 Gastrointestinal and Immunomodulatory Therapeutics (1)
  • PHARM 554 Anticancer Therapeutics (1)

Spring Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • PHARM 590 Journal Club (1)
  • PHARM 561 Neuropharmacology (2)
  • PHARM 562 Endocrine Pharmacology (2)

VIRIM Option Track (Virology and Immunology)

  • 17 core requirement credits
  • 11 VIRIM option required credits
  • 1 elective credit

Fall Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 502 Cell and Systems Biology (3)
  • BMS 503 Flow of Cellular Information (3)
  • BMS 504 Art of Scientific Communication I (1)

Spring Year 1

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 505 Art of Scientific Communication II (1)
  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • MICRO 581 Immunology A: Basic Concepts in Innate and Adaptive Immunology (1)
  • MICRO 582 Immunology B: Adaptive Immunity (1)
  • BMS 562 Principles of Immunology C: Dysfunction and Manipulation of the Immune System (1)
  • MICRO 550 Medical Microbiology: Topics in Molecular Pathogenesis (2)

At the end of Year 1, students take the candidacy examination, make a final decision regarding their Program or Option, and enter their dissertation research lab.

Fall Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 591 Ethics (1)
  • BMS 596 Individual Study: Research (2)
  • BMS 801 Writing Grant Proposals for Biomedical Research (1)

Option-Specific

  • VIRIM Journal Club (1)
  • BMS 564 Concepts in Virology (2)
  • BMS 566 Viral Oncogenesis (1)
  • BMS 567 Viral Pathogenesis (1)

Spring Year 2

Core Requirements (number of credits)

  • BMS 590 Colloquium (1)

Option-Specific

  • MICRO 560 Concepts in Immunology (2)
  • MICRO 590 Colloquium (1)
  • GENET 581 Genetics of Model Organisms A: Bacterial and Viral Pathogenesis (1)

To complete the VIRIM Journal Club requirement, VIRIM students must register either for VIRIM 580 Critical Reading in Immunobiology or MICRO 572 Virology Journal Club.

VIRIM students take either 1) BMS 564 or MICRO 560 and 2) BMS 562 or BMS 564. These choices must be made in consultation with the student’s dissertation adviser.