Toggle Search


Graduate Programs

PhD Program

The Ph.D. program in pharmacology at the University of Iowa is recognized both nationally and internationally.  Many graduates of the program have gone on to become leaders in the field of pharmacology. The emphasis of the Ph.D. program is on laboratory research as well as development of critical analysis and communication skills.  Students also gain knowledge of the field through course work in molecular and cell biology, human physiology and pharmacological sciences during the first two years of the program. Over the past five years, the time required to complete the Ph.D. degree has averaged 5.4 years.  Additional information about the program or to apply on-line, click here.

Interdisciplinary Programs

Faculty in the Department of Pharmacology participate in a number of interdisciplinary graduate programs within the University as well as in several programs which combine a professional degree (M.D., D.D.S., etc.) with the Ph.D. degree in pharmacology. For additional information or to apply on-line, click here

What our students say about Pharmacology

We asked our students why they chose to study here, and their comments highlight the important features and benefits of our Department, the University, and Iowa City:

"I chose Pharmacology as my discipline of study primarily due to the fantastic department. The department is composed of a small, close-knit group of researchers who make efforts to stay informed on the research everyone is doing and collaborate frequently and productively. As a graduate student, I expected to be somewhat lost in the chaos of the lab, not known by others for a significant portion of time. However, when I joined, I was quickly known by every faculty member in the department, who made and still make efforts to say hi and check up on my progress. The department also makes significant efforts to secure their students fellowships, which are common among the graduate students. Compared to graduate students in other departments, I feel much more knowledgeable about general scientific principles and very prepared for life after graduate school.
- Jeremy Sandgren, 3rd year Pharmacology student in Justin Grobe's lab 

"Having completed my undergraduate degree at a small liberal arts institution, it was important to me that I not get lost at a huge graduate institution. The University of Iowa Department of Pharmacology combines all the benefits of a large research institution while maintaining a uniquely intimate environment in which graduate students are treated as valuable members of the community. The friendly atmosphere and commitment to student success of the department are incredibly supportive of both scientific and personal growth. Furthermore, the quality of research is outstanding and students have access to faculty at the top of their fields. The strongly collaborative nature of the department encourages students to broaden their interests and learn a wide range of skills without being limited to the expertise of a single mentor."
- Balyssa Bell, 5th year Pharmacology student in Kamal Rahmouni's lab

 "The research atmosphere here at the University of Iowa is extremely collaborative and the Department of Pharmacology exemplifies that spirit of collaboration. The Department of Pharmacology is nationally respected for its rigorous PhD program in addition to the later successes achieved by graduates of the program. Unique to the department of Pharmacology is the twice-weekly seminars and student workshops which provide an opportunity to invite visiting speakers and allow students to hone their speaking skills while also presenting their work. Also, a degree in pharmacology is useful to have given its breadth of scope ranging from molecular investigation of pharmacology to the physiological effects in an entire organism. Being a member of the Department of Pharmacology gives you access to well-respected investigators studying cancer, cardiovascular disorders, metabolic disorders and obesity, neurological disorders, and pain. It would be hard for me to imagine being trained in any other department at this point, I really do think the Department of Pharmacology is the best fit for me."
- Kyle Flippo, 7th year Pharmacology student in Stefan Strack's lab