Detailed Program Requirements

1. Brief Overview

The general requirements for the Ph.D. degree in Behavioral Neuroscience are briefly summarized in this section. More detailed information can be found in later sections of this document, in the By-Laws of the Graduate Council of the School of Medicine, and in the School of Medicine Graduate Catalog. 

  • Required Coursework: Students complete most of their required coursework during the first 2 years. Thereafter, the majority of the time is spent conducting research under the supervision of a faculty mentor.    
  • Research Rotations: Students will complete a series of laboratory research rotations during their 1st year and then choose a faculty mentor.    
  • Research Paper Requirement: All students must fulfill a research paper requirement by the end of the 2nd year (i.e., before the 1st day of class for fall term of the 3rd year). Completion of a Master's thesis may be used to meet this requirement.    
  • Qualifying Examination: All students must pass a written qualifying examination to advance to candidacy for the Ph.D. by the end of fall term of the 3rd year of training.    
  • Ph.D. Research Proposal: A written Ph.D. Research Proposal must be submitted by the student and approved by the departmental Dissertation Advisory Committee by the end of the 3rd year.    
  • Ph.D. Dissertation and Oral Examination: All students must complete a Ph.D. dissertation and pass the Graduate Council Oral Examination. It is generally expected that students will complete this requirement during 5th year of training.