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The field of genetics, genomics and informatics is growing rapidly. Methods in gene expression, epigenetics, gene mapping and linking genetics to biochemical processes and pathways, out of reach a mere 20 years ago are now routinely applied to unlock the secrets of the genome. The PhD track is designed to prepare new scientists broadly so that they may develop their careers in a variety of venues.

Students in the GGI Track complete their core curriculum described below. Students will choose at least 8 credit hours of additional elective courses that suit the individual student's needs. Any course required by the other Biomedical Sciences PhD tracks is acceptable as an elective. Other graduate level courses can be used to satisfy the elective requirement upon approval from the track director.

Seminar - Students must register for the GGI Seminar for credit which includes a discussion of a publication by the seminar speaker followed by a meeting with the seminar speaker.

Bioinformatics Summit - All GGI students must take the Informatics Summit in the Spring term of each year. Students may opt not to take this course if they are defending their dissertation that term.

(Minimum 52 credits, consisting of 24 credits of IP 900, 12 credits of core courses, 8 credits of electives and 8 credits of symposia & seminars)

Required Curriculum

Core Courses

  • GGI 901, Integrative Genetics (3) GGI-New01
  • GGI 903, Medical Genetics (3) GGI-New05
  • BIOE 845, Biostatistics for Integrated Biomedical Sciences (2)
  • IP 801, Integrity in the Conduct of Scientific Research (1)
  • MSCI 814, Bioinformatics (2)
  • MSCI 815, Bioinformatics (1)


  • IP 805 (3), Essentials of Molecular Biology  OR IP 841(3) Essentials of Cell Biology (One of these must be chosen and constitutes 1 of the 4 elective courses required).
  • Genetic Epidemiology (3) BIOE824
  • Pharmacogenomics (2) GGI 902 GGI-New06
  • Special Topics GGI 840 (3) GGI-New03

Additional requirements

  • GGI Seminar (1) - GGI 820 GGI-New 02
  • Bioinformatics Summit (1) -  GGI 905 every Spring term GGI-New04
  • IP 900 – 24 Credits
Students are required to do at least three, and up to six, 6-week lab rotations with IBS program faculty. These rotations can occur during any of the six Biomedical Sciences Program prescribed rotational periods during the first year. After three rotations a student may begin work in their chosen mentor's lab or may elect to do more rotations. A mentor's lab must be identified by the end of the first year.
At the end of their second year students must pass a qualifying exam before admission to Ph.D. candidacy. For the exam students write a grant application in the form of an NIH F31, National Research Service Award (NRSA) on the topic of their research. As part of the examination the student must give an oral presentation and defend the application to their graduate committee. Students are expected to demonstrate mastery of the required GGI coursework. Passing this exam is required for continuation in the program. If the first submission and defense are found to be unsatisfactory, the student is given one and only one chance for re-examination. Students who do not complete this examination satisfactorily will not be allowed to continue in the program.

(A minimum of 9 credits is required each term)

Year 1

Fall Term

  • Integrative Genetics (3) - GGI 901
  • GGI Seminar (1) - GGI 820
  • Two 6-week lab rotations (2 credit hours) - IP 900
  • Essentials of Cell Biology (3) - IP 841

Spring Term

  • Biostatistics for Integrated Biomedical Sciences (2) - BIOE 845
  • GGI Seminar (1) - GGI 820
  • Bioinformatics Summit (1) – GGI 905
  • Integrity in the Conduct of Scientific Research (1) - IP 801
  • 6-week lab rotation (1-4 credit hours) - IP 900
  • Elective
  • Choose Mentor and begin research

Year 2

Fall Term

  • GGI Seminar (1) - GGI 820
  • Medical Genetics (3) - GGI 903
  • Special Topics (3) - GGI 840
  • Dissertation Research (up to 9 credit hrs) - IP 900
  • Elective

Spring Term

  • GGI Seminar (1) - GGI 920
  • Bioinformatics I (2) - MSCI 814
  • Genetic Epidemiology (3) BIOE 824
  • Dissertation Research (up to 9 credit hrs) - IP 900
  • Special Topics (3) - GGI 840
  • Bioinformatics Summit (1) - GGI 905
  • Elective

End of Spring Term

  • Candidacy exam (research proposal submitted to committee followed by oral defense)

Year 3

  • Dissertation Research - IP 900
  • GGI Seminar - GGI 820 (each term)
  • Bioinformatics Summit - GGI 905 (Spring term)

Year 4 and Beyond

  • Dissertation Research - IP 900
  • GGI Seminar – GGI 820 (each term)
  • Bioinformatics Summit - GGI 905 (Spring term)
May 26, 2022