Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics (CBMG)

The MS and PhD programs in Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics seek to provide training in the genetic and molecular basis of disease states. Students in this program develop a strong foundation in molecular and cellular biology that can be applied to a research career in academic, government, and industry settings.

Applicants should refer to the Cell Biology & Molecular Genetics Graduate Faculty page for more information on faculty research interests, which include:

  • cancer biology
  • immunology
  • drug discovery
  • biological materials
  • wound healing
  • lipid biophysics
  • cell physiology
  • cell signaling
  • bioinformatics

Applicants interested in cellular/molecular processes within the brain should refer to the Integrative Physiology and Neurobiology program.  Those interested in cellular/molecular processes in microbiology, plants, or with an evolutionary prospective should refer to the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology program.

CBMG Program Requirements

MS students must complete a minimum of 32 hours of graduate course work; including a minimum of 14 credit hours of formal graduated course work and 6 credit hours of Thesis I.

PhD students must complete a minimum of 60 credit hours beyond the master’s degree or 90 credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree; including a minimum of 20 credit hours of formal graduate course work and 30 credit hours of Dissertation I.

            CBMG course requirements

  • Eukaryotic Cell Biology
  • Selected Readings in Eukaryotic Cell Biology
  • Responsible Conduct in Research and Teaching
  • Seminar in Physiology
  • A graduate level biostatistics class
  • Bioenergetics or a graduate level biochemistry class

Students should enroll in additional courses that provide necessary skills for completion of research projects and that will be beneficial for their professional development.  All students must complete the required online Laboratory Safety Training.  Students with coursework deficits in curricula of prior degrees should enroll in appropriate graduate-level courses.

            CBMG common elective courses

  • Molecular Mechanisms of Disease: Cancer
  • Immunology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Molecular Biology Lab
  • Introduction to Genomics
  • Bioinformatics
  • Principles of Infectious Disease
  • Experimental Design and Analysis in Molecular Biology

Students in all graduate programs are subject to the academic rules and regulations described in the graduate catalog and are responsible for being familiar with them. In addition, the department graduate student handbook has important details about procedures, orders in which events happen, examples of forms, and other related items; students should be familiar with and understand the policies specified in the handbook. Students should be aware of and adhere to the appropriate checklist for their degree program.

Click here to apply to our MS/PhD programs

CBMG Timelines

MS Timeline

  • Semester 1: Form faculty guidance committee
  • End of Semester 1: Create a program of study to define required coursework
  • End of Semester 2: Generate a research proposal
  • End of year 2: Complete all required coursework
  • Final Semester (average 2.5yr):
    • Complete Thesis
    • Give Department seminar (30-minute)
    • Pass final oral defense

PhD Timeline

  • Semester 1: Form faculty guidance committee
  • End of Semester 1: Create a program of study to define required coursework.
  • End of year 2: Complete all required coursework & take candidacy examination
  • End of year 3: Complete prospectus
  • Final Semester (average 6yr):
    • Complete Dissertation
    • Give Department seminar (45-minute)
    • Pass final oral defense