PhD in Medical Pharmacology and Physiology

Degree Requirements

The PhD requires satisfactory completion of at least 72 credit hours of coursework and defense of dissertation.  This includes at least two years of basic and advanced courses in physiology and/or pharmacology, as well as courses in cell and molecular biology. Included in course requirements is a minimum of 15 hours of 8000-9000 level courses, not including research courses (8090 or 9090). Students will also be trained in conducting physiological and pharmacological research in the laboratory of individual faculty members during the first year, including three 4-week laboratory rotations before the end of the first semester. The student will choose a dissertation mentor at or before the end of the first year and decide whether they wish to pursue the doctoral program in Pharmacology or Physiology. PhD students must serve as a teaching assistant for at least two semesters. Students are also required to present at the annual departmental student research update day each year that they are enrolled in the program. The doctoral program normally requires four to five years beyond the baccalaureate degree.

Required Courses
STAT 7070Statistical Methods for Research3
or STAT 7530 Analysis of Variance
or STAT 7510 Applied Statistical Models I
MPP 7422Medical Physiology4
MPP 7424Medical Pharmacology4
MPP 8412Seminar in Medical Pharmacology and Physiology (every semester)1
MPP 8415Responsible Conduct of Research thru Engagement, Enactment and Empowerment NIH and other Federal Age2
MPP 8420Skills in Biomedical Research2
MPP 9422Medical Pharmacology and Physiology Journal Club (every semester)1
MPP 9426Transmembrane Signaling4
BIOCHM 7270Biochemistry3
BIOCHM 7272Biochemistry3
Electives (must choose at least two)
MPP 9437Neural Control of the Circulation3
MPP 9430Cardiovascular Physiology3
MPP 9431Control of Energy Metabolism3
MPP 9432Mammalian Membrane Physiology1-3
MPP 9434Microvascular Circulatory Function4
MPP 9435Molecular Exercise Biology1-3
V_BSCI 8420Veterinary Physiology5
V_BSCI 5100Veterinary Neuroscience2

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Qualifying Examination Policy

The department does not require a formal qualifying examination. Successful completion of the core curriculum and satisfactory performance in conducting scientific research and teaching will qualify students for continuation in the PhD program.

Comprehensive Examination

All PhD program students must pass a comprehensive examination before the end of the first semester of the third year of enrollment. The usual format of the comprehensive exam includes the writing and oral defense of a research proposal outside of the student’s dissertation research area.

Dissertation

Each student must then carry out a dissertation research project, original in nature, which is expected to contribute significant new knowledge to the area of study. To facilitate this process, each student submits a dissertation research proposal within six months of passing the comprehensive examination.

Oral Defense

Finally, all PhD candidates must pass an oral defense of the dissertation and comply with all university and departmental regulations governing the PhD degree.

Admissions

Application Deadlines

Fall deadline: December 15

Admission Criteria

  • Minimum GPA: 3.0 in the last 60 hours
  • Bachelor’s degree in chemistry, biology, pharmacy or related areas from an accredited college
  • Background in biology and chemistry and an understanding of mathematics and physics
  • Course work in biochemistry and physiology is highly recommended
  • Previous lab or research experience preferred
  • Minimum English proficiency scores, one of the following:
    • TOEFL Test Of English as Foreign Language (internet based) = 80
    • IELTS International English Language Testing System (overall academic score) = 6.5
    • PTE Pearson Test of English = 59
    • C1A Cambridge C1Advanced = 180

Students are usually admitted to begin their program in the Fall semester, but applications for admission in other semesters will be considered on a space-available basis. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.

Students with an appropriate educational background are encouraged to apply for entrance into the PhD program. A master’s degree is not a prerequisite for admission to the doctoral program. The department will consider applications for the MS degree programs from U.S. citizens but PhD degree students will be given priority consideration for financial support. Deficiencies in course work may be remedied during the first years of the graduate program.

Required Application Materials

To the Graduate School:

  • All required Graduate School documents

To the Medical Pharmacology & Physiology Program:

  • Departmental application
  • Personal statement
  • Transcripts
  • 3 letters of recommendation (use form provided). The letters should be written by individuals knowledgeable of the student’s academic capability.
  • Official GRE & English proficiency scores

Admission Contact Information
Lisa Putting
MA415 Medical Sciences Bldg, DCO63.00
Columbia, MO 65212
puttingl@health.missouri.edu
573-882-4957

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