Degree Requirements

Woman on a computer

In addition to the general Graduate School requirements, the Division has several additional requirements that provide students with skills that are often overlooked in graduate training programs, but that are essential for success in academic or industrial research careers.

  • Rotations - students usually choose three faculty members with whom they would like to do a laboratory rotation. This allows the student the opportunity to interact with three faculty members and learn about different areas of research before selecting an advisor.

  • Teaching Assistant Training and Teaching Opportunity (TATTO)- students take a course that provides workshops on syllabus writing and grading, lecturing and leading discussions, the use of writing as a pedagogical tool, the conduct of lab sessions, and the use of new technologies. A Teaching Assistantship follows, where the student is carefully monitored in an initial teaching opportunity.

  • Seminars – students are given the opportunity to hear outstanding scientists present their research in seminars, and the students also develop their own communication and presentation skills when they give seminars on their own research.

  • Grant Writing – several Programs require that their students prepare a Ph.D. research dissertation proposal in the form of a National Institutes of Health or National Science Foundation research grant application.

  • Qualifying Exams (oral, written)