Major: Immunology
Degree Awarded: Master of Science (MS)
Calendar Type: Semester
Total Credit Hours: 36.0
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 26.0507
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code:

About the Program

Mission Statement

The Master of Science in Immunology, offered by the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and the Institute for Molecular Medicine and Infectious Disease (IMMID), is a non-thesis degree program.  The program provides education and training in areas of research in basic and clinical immunology and immunologically-based diseases. Students in this program acquire theoretical and practical knowledge about the normal functions of the immune system and disease pathogenesis associated with immunological dysfunction. Students also learn how this knowledge is applied to develop tools for diagnosis, treatment, prognosis, and prevention of immunologically based diseases. Graduates from this program will be ready to enter the biotechnology workforce and are attractive candidates for doctoral programs in science and medicine.

The Master of Science in Immunology program is designed to provide academic and practical biotechnical knowledge in translational research, particularly in the areas of immunotherapeutics and vaccine development.


The two year non-thesis program encompasses fundamental requirements to establish a sound grounding in immunology, biochemistry, genetics, cellular and molecular biology . The program is typically completed in two full-time years (four semesters of at least nine credits) of required and elective graduate courses, and one or more experiential research components in the first or second year. The flexibility of the curriculum enables students to complete the degree requirement within 18 months on an accelerated basis, and up to 4 years on a part-time basis. The successful completion of the degree will be determined by grades obtained in the graduate courses, participation in seminars and journal clubs, and performance in the research component. A minimum of 36.0 credits is required to graduate, with at least 6 of those earned as research credits.

The experiential research component of the curriculum can be fulfilled by two alternative approaches. Most students choose to engage in an intensive 6.0 credit  hands-on research internship in which a 12-16 week research program will be undertaken in a laboratory at Drexel University, another academic institution, or at a biotechnology or biopharmaceutical company. Alternatively, students may choose to engage in a less intensive experience spanning two semesters, or conduct an independent research project, with the approval and supervision of Program Directors.

Traditional (Face-to-Face), Hybrid, or Online Learning Options

Classes can be attended at any of Drexel College of Medicine locations: Center City and Queen Lane campuses in Philadelphia. State-of-the-art video conferencing provides real-time interactive learning at these locations. Most classes are held in the late afternoon/early evening to facilitate participation of working professionals. The program may also be completed fully online, offered through Drexel University Online. All required courses and most electives have online sections and online students experience the same curriculum as face-to-face or hybrid students. Online sections are designed to maximize interactions among students and faculty, and may include live web sessions. Individual students also may choose a mix of traditional and online (hybrid) courses. The goal is to provide maximum scheduling flexibility.

Program Contact information

For more detailed information about the curriculum and program goals, please contact either:

Stephen Jennings, PhD


Pooja Jain, PhD

Program Goals

Over the course of completing the program, students will develop

1.  Core knowledge of molecular and cellular disciplines that constitute biomedical sciences

2.  Working knowledge of normal functions of the immune system at the cellular and molecular level and how immunological dysfunction contributes to immunologically based disease

3.  Practical knowledge and skills that help identify gaps in the biomedical field for the development of molecular diagnostic and therapeutic tools.

4.  Skills in basic, translational, or clinical research

5.  Professional ethics necessary for the responsible conduct of research

6.  Communication and leadership skills

7.  Other soft skills (e.g., collaboration, problem solving, career planning, networking) that facilitate career advancement and promotion

In the course of meeting these program-level goals, students will have also made progress in all of the Drexel Student Learning Priorities (DSLPs) to help them build their futures.

Core Intellectual and Practical Skills:

  • Communication
  • Critical and creative thinking
  • Ethical reasoning
  • Information literacy
  • Self-directed learning
  • Technology use

Experiential and Applied Learning:

  • Global competence
  • Leadership
  • Professional practice
  • Research, scholarship and creative expression
  • Responsible citizenship

Admission Requirements

For acceptance into the Master of Science in Immunology program, the applicant must have completed a four-year biology or chemistry-based BA or BS degree program with undergraduate coursework in biology, microbiology, immunology, chemistry, biochemistry, mathematics, and/or other related subjects. Although a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 is strongly desired, an applicant with a lower cumulative GPA will be considered if other strengths are apparent in the application.

To be considered for acceptance, an applicant must provide the following as part of a complete online application for admission:

  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
  • A current curriculum vitae (CV) or resume
  • References from at least three instructors or professionals

Although standardized test scores are not required for admission, official copies of scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) will be considered if submitted as part of the application.

International applicants (non-United States citizens) must meet the same requirements for admission as students from the United States. In addition to the above requirements, applicants whose native language is not English must demonstrate the ability to speak, write, and understand the English language by submitting an acceptable score from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

Acceptance into the program will be decided by considering the sum of the applicant's undergraduate curriculum, cumulative GPA, GRE/MCAT scores, recommendation letters, and relevant research and professional experience.

Online applications are considered year round. Potential students are encouraged to apply no later than July 1 for Fall admission, or December 1 for Spring admission.

For additional information about the program and to access the online application, view the Master of Science in Immunology page on the College of Medicine's website.

Degree Requirements

About the Curriculum

Through the combination of required and elective courses, a total of 36.0 credits is required to successfully obtain the degree of Masters of Science in Molecular Medicine. In order to maintain full-time student status, a minimum of 9.0 credits must be taken in any given academic semester. In most cases, there are both traditional (face-to-face) and online sections for each course). Students should work with their program advisors to plan their course of study.

Research Requirements

The research component of the curriculum can be fulfilled by two alternative approaches. Most student choose to engage in a hands-on research internship in which a 12 week research program will be undertaken in a laboratory at Drexel, another academic institution, or at a biotechnology or biopharmaceutical company. Alternatively, students may choose to engage in an independent research project, with the approval and supervision of Program Directors.

For an individualized plan of study listing the sequence of courses to be completed, students should work with their program advisor.

Program Requirements

Required Courses
IDPT 500SResponsible Conduct of Research2.0
or MIIM 503S Biomedical Ethics
IDPT 501SBiostatistics I2.0
or MIIM 517S Applied Statistics for Biomedical Sciences
MIIM 527SImmunology, Immunopathology and Infectious Diseases3.0
MIIM 530SFundamentals of Molecular Medicine I3.0
MIIM 531SFundamentals of Molecular Medicine II2.0
MIIM 532SFundamentals of Molecular Medicine III2.0
MIIM 533SMolecular Medicine Journal Club II1.0
MIIM 534SMolecular Medicine Journal Club I1.0
MIIM 606SMicrobiology and Immunology Seminar1.0
MIIM 654SClinical Correlations in Immunology3.0
To complete the MS in Immunology degree, 36.0 credits must be accrued. Students may choose from a menu of additional electives, depending on their academic goals. 16.0
Possible Electives
Microbiology and Immunology Journal Club
Biotechniques I: Molecular and Genomic Methods
Biotechniques II: Immunological Methods
Vaccines and Vaccine Development
Principles of Biocontainment
Viruses and Viral Infections
Bacteria and Bacterial Infections
Mycology and Fungal Infections
Parasitology and Parasitic Diseases
Molecular Mechanisms of Microbial Pathogenesis
Immunology II
Molecular Mechanisms of Viral Pathogenesis
Emerging Infectious Diseases
Experimental Therapeutics
Biomedical Research I
Biomedical Research II
Advanced Molecular Virology
Advanced Molecular Biology
Research Internship in Immunology
Current Concepts in Molecular Medicine I
Molecular Genetics
Total Credits36.0
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