Academic Programs


Our Biomedical Science PhD candidates benefit from the diversity of an umbrella program alongside Departmentally Based and Interdisciplinary Programs. 

The Biomedical Science Program (BSP) is a first-year umbrella program supporting matriculation into any of these seven PhD subprograms: Cancer BiologyCell and Developmental BiologyExperimental PathologyFree Radical and Radiation BiologyMolecular MedicineMolecular Physiology and Biophysics, and Pharmacology. Successful completion culminates with a PhD granted in Biomedical Science and affiliation to one of the subprograms—for example, PhD, Biomedical Science (Pharmacology). 

Completing the complement of biomedical PhD programs residing under OGPS are six closely related PhD programs - Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Genetics, Human Toxicology, Immunology, Microbiology and Neuroscience. Biochemistry/Molecular Biology and Microbiology are Departmentally Based Programs while Genetics, Human Toxicology, Immunology and Neuroscience are Interdisciplinary Programs.

The biomedical programs interface closely with the highly ranked medical scientist training program (MSTP) and host the MD/PhD students for the PhD phase of their training.

Training and Professional Development

A major focus of our graduate programs is preparing students and making them competitive for both traditional career outcomes (e.g., independent scientist positions at research-intensive institutions), and other career outcomes where PhD training is vital (e.g., teaching positions at liberal arts colleges and universities, research positions in biotechnology and industry, administrative positions in government, and media positions). In conjunction with the Office of UI Grad Success, the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies provides professional development and career skills training across the biomedical programs, to ensure that students acquire appropriate skill sets to compete at the next level.

Faculty and Graduate Students

Well-funded and highly visible training faculty from 26 basic science and clinical departments in the Carver College of Medicine, and from other biomedically-related departments across the campus (e.g., Biology, Engineering, Psychology), participate in training biomedical PhD students. Many faculty members are internationally renowned for their research. Two faculty members are Howard Hughes Institute Investigators, 12 are members of the Institute of Medicine and two are members of the National Academy of Sciences.

A high proportion of the training faculty are clinician-scientists, providing graduate students uncommon opportunities to gain experience with clinical populations relevant to their bench science. 

Altogether, more than 300 graduate students are enrolled in the PhD programs. Students across the various biomedical PhD programs have a long history of success in winning extramural funding, including prestigious NRSA (F30, F31) and NSF fellowships.

Core Research Facilities

Researchers in the college's laboratories are served by state-of-the-art core research facilities and research support facilities. Much of the research conducted is interdisciplinary and collaborations are fostered and coordinated through major research centers, institutions and programs.