Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics (MC 669)
900 South Ashland Avenue
Chicago, IL 60607-7170
Campus Location: 2150 MBRB
Program Codes: 20FS1069MS (MS); 20FS4050PHD (PhD)
Telephone: (312) 996-1295
Web Site: http://www.uic.edu/com/bcmg/
Head of the Department: Jack Kaplan
Co-Directors of Graduate Studies: Alisa Katzen, Michael Caffrey
The Department participates in an integrated interdepartmental program, Graduate Education in Medical Sciences (GEMS), which offers students flexibility in coursework and laboratory rotations. Students entering the Ph.D. program in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics will take courses in the GEMS curriculum during the first year. This curriculum will provide students with a broad background in biochemistry, molecular genetics and other biomedical sciences. In the second year and beyond, students will then pursue their own specific scientific interests by taking a variety of advanced courses and by undertaking a research program under the mentorship of a departmental faculty member whom they have selected during their first-year research rotations.
The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics also participates in the Medical Scientist Training Program (see the Medical Scientist Training Programsection for more information). The department has active, well-funded research programs in the molecular biology of growth and development, oncogenesis, metabolic regulation, macromolecular structure and function, signal transduction, and the biochemical basis of diseases. The Interdepartmental Concentration in Neuroscience is available to doctoral students.
Applicants to the PhD program in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics should apply online through the GEMS application process. Please remember to select Biochemistry & Molecular Genetics as your first preference to be considered for admission into our program. In addition to the Graduate College minimum requirements, applicants must meet the following program requirements:
- Baccalaureate Field No restrictions. Prior academic work should include 16 semester hours of chemistry (including organic chemistry, physical chemistry, and quantitative analysis), and at least one advanced course in biology. An undergraduate course in biochemistry is highly recommended.
- Grade Point Average At least 2.90/4.00 for the final 60 semester (90 quarter) hours of undergraduate study.
- Tests Required GRE General.
- Minimum English Competency Test Score
- TOEFL The TOEFL score cannot be more than two years old. UIC’s Institutional Code is 1851. 550 (paper-based); 80, with subscores of Reading 19, Listening 17, Speaking 20, and Writing 21 (iBT Internet-based), OR,
- IELTS 6.5, with subscores of 6.0 for all four subscores.
- Letters of Recommendation Required.
- Personal Statement Required.
- Deadlines The application deadline for this program is earlier than the Graduate College deadline; contact the program for information on current deadlines.
- Other The department only admits applicants who wish to be candidates for the PhD degree. Applicants are not admitted as candidates for a terminal master’s degree.
In addition to the Graduate College minimum requirements, students must meet the following program requirements:
- Minimum Semester Hours Required 32.
- Course Work Two tracks (thesis and nonthesis) are available to students in this program.
- Required Courses: GCLS 501; 502 or 503; 504; 505; 2 semesters of BCMG 515; BCMG 598. Students enrolled in the nonthesis track must also take 3 semesters of BCMG 503 (or equivalent); both GCLS 502 and 503; and are not required to take BCMG 598.
- Electives: Students must take 9 hours of electives in the second semester of the first year choosing from BCMG 513, GCLS 500, GCLS 510, GCLS 511, or other 500-level courses. All elective courses are subject to the approval of the departmental graduate committee.
- Comprehensive Examination None.
- Thesis, Project, or Course-Work-Only Options Thesis or course work only. No other options are available
- Thesis: Thesis students must earn at least 12 semester hours in BCMG 598.
- Other Requirements Supervised part-time teaching experiences during one term of each year are regularly assigned to students in the program.
- Minimum Semester Hours Required 96 from the baccalaureate.
- Course Work Required Core: Of the four core GEMS courses (GCLS 500, 501, 502, and 503), all students must take or show proficiency in GCLS 501, 502, and 503. Students must also take or show proficiency in GCLS 504 and 505; GCLS 506 or BCMG 503; 6 semesters of BCMG 515; BCMG 575; BCMG 595 every semester; BCMG 501.
- Electives: Three 500-level electives chosen from the following: GCLS 500, GCLS 510, GCLS 511, GCLS 515, BCMG 513, PHYB 586. Subject to approval by the director of graduate studies, an alternative 500-level course can be used to satisfy one of these electives.
- Preliminary Examination Required. Students take a preliminary qualifying examination for advancement to PhD candidacy at the end of their second year of study. This examination will test a student’s ability to design and orally defend a scientific research plan as well as his/her general knowledge of biochemistry and molecular genetics.
- Dissertation Required. A defined research experience and completion of an approved thesis is required. The thesis will be presented in a public forum and defended in front of a faculty jury. The research presented in the thesis is expected to be of publishable quality.
- Other Requirements Supervised part-time teaching experiences during one term of each year are regularly assigned to students in the program. The department requires every degree candidate to fulfill teaching assignments, regardless of the source of financial support for the student.
Interdepartmental Concentration in Neuroscience
Doctoral students may pursue the Interdepartmental Concentration in Neuroscience. Refer to Interdepartmental Concentration in Neuroscience in the Graduate College section for more information.