Pharmaceutical Sciences (Ph.D.)

Admission Requirements

Admission: In addition to the requirements of the Graduate School, the applicant should present a bachelor’s or master’s degree with a major in the behavioral, biological, pharmaceutical or physical sciences.

The General portion of the Graduate Record Examination is required of all applicants. There are no minimum GRE scores required for admissions; however, applicants scoring below 150 on the quantitative portion of the exam are generally not admitted.

Applicants whose native language is other than English must demonstrate proficiency in English prior to beginning the program.

In addition to the regular University application, the applicant must also submit the following.

  1. A general statement (300-400 words, typewritten) of reasons for selecting the program, including a resume, career objectives, possible research interests and a list of faculty members that the applicant is interested in working with for their dissertation.
  2. Three letters of recommendation.

Candidates for the doctoral degree must complete ninety credits beyond the baccalaureate degree, in compliance with the academic procedures of the Graduate School's requirements for doctoral degrees. All PhD students are required to complete four core interdisciplinary courses:

PSC 6800Introduction to Research2
PSC 7010Advanced Drug Action and Safety I3
PSC 7020Advanced Drug Discovery I3
PSC 7040Advanced Drug Formulation and Delivery I3

The thirty-credit dissertation registration requirement is fulfilled by registering for the courses PSC 9991, PSC 9992, PSC 9993, and PSC 9994 (Doctoral Dissertation Research and Direction I, II, III, and IV, respectively), in consecutive academic year semesters.

Selection of Advisor: Doctoral students either select an advisor after rotating in three labs or are directly placed under the supervision of an advisor.

Seminar Presentation: All Ph.D. students will register for PSC 7850 each semester they are in the program. In total, all PhD students must present three seminars not including their defense seminar. Students register for one credit of Introduction to Seminar, PSC 7860, in the Spring/Summer semester of their first year and provide a seminar of thirty minutes in length describing a research experience during their first year. After the first academic year, all Ph.D. students will register for one credit of PSC 7870, Second Year Seminar (Winter semester) and PSC 7880, Third Year Seminar (Fall). For PSC 7870, the seminar shall be on a topic not directly related to the student's dissertation work. The topic will be selected by the student in concert with his/her research advisor and must be approved by that semester's seminar coordinator not less than two weeks prior to the scheduled seminar. Furthermore, the student must make available to the Department a two-page outline or summary of the seminar, including pertinent references. The outline/summary must be approved by the semester's seminar coordinator, who will deliver it to the Department faculty, students, and staff by email not less than one week prior to the seminar. Failure to comply with this requirement shall result in a lowering of the student's seminar grade by one full mark. PSC 7880 will take place after the student has obtained Candidacy and will be on their dissertation research.

Academic Progress: All students are required to complete a comprehensive Capstone exam after the successful completion of all required courses. In addition, at the conclusion of the Fall and Winter semesters, progress of every student in the program will be reviewed by the departmental Graduate Program Committee. Each student is evaluated in terms of performance in course work, research progress, fulfillment of University requirements for filing a Plan of Work, and overall professional development. The evaluation at the conclusion of the winter semester includes a written assessment by the faculty advisor of the student’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as an indication of how any deficiencies will be addressed. All course work must be completed in accordance with the academic procedures of the Graduate School governing graduate scholarship and degrees and the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

A student will be placed on probation for any of the following reasons;

  1. Qualified admission status at the time of matriculation;
  2. Receipt of a grade lower than ‘B’ in any departmental course;
  3. Notification from the advisor and/or thesis committee that the student is not making adequate progress in his/her research.
  4. Inappropriate, unprofessional and unsafe conduct as determined by the Graduate Program Committee.

The student will be informed in writing, at the time of being placed on probation, of the requirements for removal from probationary status. The decision to place a student on probation rests with the Graduate Program Committee.

A student may be dismissed from the program for the following reasons:

  1. Failure to comply with requirements set by the Graduate Program committee;
  2. Receipt of two or more grades below ‘B’ in any single semester;
  3. Unauthorized leave of absence;
  4. Inability to find a research advisor;
  5. Receipt of a grade less than B while on probation.

Leave of Absence: A leave of absence is defined as an absence from the graduate program for one or more semesters and is only permitted for extenuating personal or medical reasons. Students who are granted a leave of absence may be required to do remedial work, depending on the length of absence from the program.

Students who have not registered for two or more consecutive semesters will be placed on inactive status and must obtain the permission of the Department Graduate Program Committee and the College Graduate Officer before registering again.