University of Missouri School of Medicine MU Health School of Medicine

Graduate Program

The Department adheres the principles delineated in the Compact Between Biomedical Graduate Students and Their Research Advisors and encourages all students to develop an Individual Development Plan.

Masters of Science (M.S.) in Pharmacology and Physiology

The duration of the M.S. program is 2 years. M.S. students are required to serve as teaching assistants for each semester in the program. The first year consists of required course work, teaching assistantships, and laboratory experiences. By the end of the first semester, students are expected to have selected a laboratory and mentor, for either the thesis or non-thesis track, and to form their thesis advisory committee. The second year consists of a continuation of coursework, ongoing thesis work, and the defense of their thesis project.

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Pharmacology and Physiology

For the Ph.D. program, the typical duration is 4-5 years. The first year consists of required course work, teaching, and laboratory experiences and provides students the opportunity to enter laboratories and begin research as early as the second semester.

Students are expected to complete at least two semesters of teaching assistantship.

By the end of the first semester, students are expected to have selected a laboratory and mentor. The second year consists of a continuation of coursework (both required and elective), a final semester of teaching assistantship, ongoing laboratory work and the formation of the dissertation committee. The comprehensive examination is normally taken at the end of the second year. Within six months of successfully passing this examination, the student prepares and defends a dissertation proposal. The remainder of the program is spent completing the research project and preparing a dissertation.

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