VCU Bulletins

Physiology and Biophysics, Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Logothetis, Diomedes
Professor and Chair
delogothetis@vcu.edu
(804) 828-5878

Meliagros, Christina
Graduate Program Contact
cimeliagros@vcu.edu
(804) 628-5506

Web:
www.vcu.edu/physio/

Admission requirements summary

Physiology and Biophysics, Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
Degree:

Ph.D.
Semester(s)
of entry:

Fall preferred
Deadline
dates:

Applications received prior to Dec 17 given priority consideration
Test
requirements:

GRE, MCAT
Special requirements:
MCAT or DAT acceptable in lieu of GRE for combined professional/academic degree programs
Physical therapy track in Physiology and Biophysics Ph.D. program
Degree:

Ph.D.
Semester(s)
of entry:

Fall
Deadline
dates:

Applications received prior to Jan 7 given priority consideration
Test
requirements:

B.S., M.S. or D.P.T. in Physical Therapy
Contact Physical Therapy or Physiology and Biophysics for specific admission requirements

Graduate study in the Department of Physiology and Biophysics of the School of Medicine is a highly individualized undertaking, of which required course work is only one component. Each student's program is tailored to meet his or her particular interests, with the primary emphasis on developing research skills and the capacity for scholarship.

Opportunities for research experience begin in the first year, when students spend time working in several faculty laboratories of their choice. These lab rotations enable students to examine current faculty research projects and choose their areas of specialization. In the second and subsequent years, increasingly more time is devoted to independent research under the guidance of a faculty adviser. Department-sponsored seminars give students opportunities to discuss their research interests with visiting scientists, and many students present their work at national professional meetings.

The Ph.D. program in physiology and biophysics normally takes at least four years to complete. The first two years are devoted mainly to course work: the first year consists primarily of required courses, while the second is geared toward electives and research. On satisfactory completion of two years of course work, students must pass written and oral comprehensive examinations to qualify for degree candidacy. Following admission to candidacy, each student must conduct a substantial original research project, prepare a written dissertation and defend it successfully in an oral examination.

Applications for the program should be submitted to the Biomedical Sciences Doctoral Portal – School of Medicine-PhD selected from the drop-down menu of programs on the VCU online application form.

Student learning outcomes

Curriculum

Typical course plan for the full-time student

  Credits
G1: fall 1  
BIOC/MICR 503 Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology (section 001)
and/or BIOC 691 Special Topics in Biochemistry [critical thinking (1 credit)]
or HGEN 691 Special Topics in Genetics
or IBMS 630 Critical Thinking (1 credit)
5
IBMS 600 Laboratory Safety 1
IBMS 610 Laboratory Opportunities 0.5
PHIS 501 Mammalian Physiology (section 002) 5
PHIS 690 Physiology Research Seminar (section 901: departmental)
or IBMS 690 Basic Health Sciences Research Seminar
1
PHIS 691 Special Topics in Physiology (section 501: Physiology 501 seminar) 2
PHIS 697 Directed Research in Physiology (variable)
or IBMS 620 Laboratory Rotations (2 credits)
variable
Elective – suggestions include:
BIOS/STAT 543 Statistical Methods I (3)
NEUS 609 Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience (4)
PHIS 695 Research in Progress [section 001: data club (0.5)]
variable
 
G1: spring 1
BIOC/MICR 504 Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology 5
PHIS 606 Cell Physiology: From Molecules to Organisms (section 001) 3
PHIS 690 Physiology Research Seminar (section 901: departmental) 1
PHIS 692 Special Topics (section 606 Seminar for Physiology 606) 1
PHIS 697 Directed Research in Physiology (variable)
or IBMS 620 Laboratory Rotations (2 credits)
variable
Elective – suggestions include:
NEUS 609 Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience (4)
PHIS 695 Research in Progress [section 001: data club (0.5)]
PHTX 536 Principles of Pharmacology and Toxicology (5)
variable
 
G2: summer before second year
PHIS 691 Special Topics in Physiology (section 004: physiology writing workshop) 2
PHIS 697 Directed Research in Physiology variable
 
G2: fall 2
OVPR 601 Scientific Integrity 1
PHIS 604 Cell Physiology: From Molecules to Organisms (section 001) 4
PHIS 690 Physiology Research Seminar (section 901: departmental) 1
PHIS 692 Special Topics (section 002: intro to electrophysiology and photonic methods) 2
PHIS 695 Research in Progress (section 001: data club) 0.5
PHIS 697 Directed Research in Physiology variable
One advanced elective PHIS course
Choose from:
NEUS 609 Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
PHIS 612 Cardiovascular Physiology
PHIS 615 Signal Detection in Sensory Systems
PHIS 617 Cellular Signaling
PHIS 619 Mitochondrial Pathophysiology and Human Diseases
PHIS/PHTX 620 Ion Channels in Membranes
PHIS 691 Special Topics in Physiology (section 003: physiology and pharmacology gastrointestinal systems)
variable
 
G2: spring 2
IBMS 680 Proposal Preparation 1
PHIS 630 Methods in Molecular Biophysics: A Practical Approach 2
PHIS 690 Physiology Research Seminar (section 901: departmental) 1
PHIS 692 Special Topics (section 003: application of methods to resolve problems 1
PHIS 695 Research in Progress (section 001: data club) 0.5
PHIS 697 Directed Research in Physiology variable
One advanced elective PHIS course
Choose from:
NEUS 609 Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
PHIS 612 Cardiovascular Physiology
PHIS 615 Signal Detection in Sensory Systems
PHIS 617 Cellular Signaling
PHIS 619 Mitochondrial Pathophysiology and Human Diseases
PHIS/PHTX 620 Ion Channels in Membranes
PHIS 691 Special Topics in Physiology (section 003: physiology and pharmacology gastrointestinal systems)
variable
The student would be expected to stand for his qualifying exam at the completion of the second year.
 
G3+ (years 3, 4, etc.)
PHIS 690 Physiology Research Seminar (section 901: departmental) 1
PHIS 695 Research in Progress (section 001: data club) 0.5
PHIS 697 Directed Research variable

For additional information see the departmental Web site at www.vcu.edu/physio.

 

 

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Last update: 9/11/2013

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