Neuroscience

Major: Neuroscience
Degree Awarded: Master of Science (MS) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Calendar Type:
Semester
Total Credit Hours: 36.0 - 48.0 (MS); 96.0 (PhD)
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 26.1501
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code:
11-9121

About the Program

The College of Medicine School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies offers an interdepartmental and multidisciplinary graduate program in Neuroscience leading to MS and PhD degrees. The program provides a vibrant research component for both MS and PhD degrees leading to published scientific work in reputable journals, as well as training in the panoply of research and presentation skills required to conduct and disseminate the research. Students are provided with a curriculum of integrated courses that include the essentials for biomedical research as well as courses that span cellular, developmental, systems, and behavioral neurosciences, as well as neuroanatomy and injury and disease of the nervous system. Upon completing these programs, students pursue careers in academic, governmental, or industrial settings.  

The MS in Neuroscience Program

The MS program provides students a broad background in neuroscience and the techniques used in neuroscience research. In addition to the thesis-based MS program, Drexel offers a non-thesis degree program in which students can earn the degree without a research project by taking additional classes and writing a literature review paper. Students who wish to continue their graduate training after the MS degree may apply to the PhD program, and their credits may be applied to the doctoral program.

The PhD in Neuroscience Program

The PhD program trains individuals to conduct independent hypothesis-driven research and to teach in the neurosciences. The program includes two years of coursework as well as original research leading to published thesis work. Laboratory rotations begin in the fall of the first year.

For more information, visit the College of Medicine's Neuroscience Program web site.

Admission Requirements

Students interested in cellular, systems (including neuro-engineering) and behavioral neuroscience are encouraged to apply. There are no minimal requirements but applicants should be competitive with regard to grades, GRE scores, research experience, and letters of recommendation. Applicants are encouraged to use email to contact any of the faculty of the program with whom they may share scientific interests to discuss their suitability to the program and/or potential projects in relevant laboratories.

The Drexel University College of Medicine: School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies has a rolling admissions policy, which means that complete applications are reviewed as they are received. Applicants are therefore advised to apply early, as decisions to accept or deny admission may be made before the official deadlines.

To learn more about applying to Drexel College of Medicine programs visit the College of Medicine’s Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies website.

About the Curriculum

Students in both the PhD and MS programs begin their coursework with a core curriculum. The curriculum consists of a series of core courses that are shared by all of the biomedical graduate programs in the medical school, and a series of programmatic courses. All students in the Neuroscience Program must take the core curriculum, although the possibility exists for students to be excused from a particular course if they are able to prove that they already have the necessary knowledge required of the particular course.

During the second year, students select elective courses and begin their thesis research in consultation with the Advisory-Examination Committee. At the end of the second year, students take a comprehensive examination to qualify for PhD candidacy.

There are three rotations in the curriculum for which the student will be assigned a grade. The purpose of these rotations is to enable the student to select the most appropriate Graduate Advisor to supervise the research project for the student. The Neuroscience Program Director and Steering Committee will advise each student on the selection of rotations, as well as on the progress and outcome of rotations. Flexibility will be afforded in certain situations in which the student may be able to select an advisor before completing all three rotations, or in situations wherein it is advisable to terminate a particular rotation early in favor of another choice.

Courses Repeatable for Credit

As well as taking all required courses, MS and PhD students may re-enroll in courses having the status “repeatable for credit”  (such as journal club, seminar and research courses) for the duration of their program in order to meet the total number of credits required for graduation.

MS Degree Requirements: Non-Thesis Option

MS without thesis: 36.0 semester credits

Required Courses
ANAT 501SNeurobiology Topics I2.0
ANAT 602SMedical Neuroscience6.0
IDPT 500SResponsible Conduct of Research2.0
IDPT 521SMolecular Structure and Metabolism5.0
or IDPT 550S Biochemistry and Biophysics
IDPT 526SCells to Systems5.0
IDPT 850SLiterature Review Non-Thesis MS4.0
NEUR 500SStatistics for Neuro/Pharm Research2.0
NEUR 609SGraduate Neuroscience II4.0
NEUR 508SGraduate Neuroscience I2.5
Advanced Neuroscience Course
Select at least one of the following:1.0-4.0
Advanced Cellular and Developmental Neuroscience
Advanced Systems and Behavioral Neuroscience
Motor Systems
Additional Suggested Electives
Suggested Electives (min. 2.5 credits) *2.5
Advanced Cell Biology
Graduate Pharmacology
Graduate Physiology
Total Credits36.0-39.0
*

Additional courses from the Biograduate Medical programs may be taken as electives. Students should check with the College of Medicine's Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies programs.

MS Degree Requirements: Thesis Option

MS with thesis: 48.0 minimum semester credits

Required Courses
ANAT 501SNeurobiology Topics I2.0
or PHRM 502S Current Topics in Pharmacology & Physiology
ANAT 602SMedical Neuroscience6.0
IDPT 500SResponsible Conduct of Research2.0
IDPT 521SMolecular Structure and Metabolism5.0
or IDPT 550S Biochemistry and Biophysics
IDPT 526SCells to Systems5.0
IDPT 600SThesis Defense9.0
NEUR 500SStatistics for Neuro/Pharm Research2.0
NEUR 501SNeuroscience 1st Lab Rotation4.0
NEUR 502SNeuroscience 2nd Lab Rotation4.0
NEUR 508SGraduate Neuroscience I2.5
NEUR 600SNeuroscience Thesis Research9.0
NEUR 609SGraduate Neuroscience II4.0
Advanced Neuroscience Course
Select at least one of the following:1.0-4.0
Advanced Cellular and Developmental Neuroscience
Advanced Systems and Behavioral Neuroscience
Motor Systems
Suggested Electives *
Advanced Cell Biology
Graduate Pharmacology
Graduate Physiology
Total Credits55.5-58.5
*

Additional courses from the Biograduate Medical programs may be taken as electives. Students should check with the College of Medicine's Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies programs.

PhD Degree Requirements

Students are required to complete 96.0 credits; for additional graduation requirements, refer to the School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies Handbook and the Neuroscience Program Policies and Procedures.

During the third year, students develop a plan for their doctoral research in conjunction with their thesis advisor. A formal, written thesis proposal is then presented to the student’s Thesis Advisory Committee. Acceptance of this proposal after oral examination by the Committee leads to the final stage of doctoral training. PhD candidates then spend the majority of their time on thesis research. After concluding their research, they must submit and publicly defend their thesis before the Thesis-Examination Committee.

PhD students may enroll in courses having the status “repeatable for credit”  (such as journal club, seminar and research courses) for the duration of their program in order to meet the degree completion requirement of 96.0 credits.

Required Courses
ANAT 501SNeurobiology Topics I1.0-2.0
or PHRM 502S Current Topics in Pharmacology & Physiology
ANAT 602SMedical Neuroscience6.0
IDPT 500SResponsible Conduct of Research2.0
IDPT 521SMolecular Structure and Metabolism5.0
or IDPT 550S Biochemistry and Biophysics
IDPT 526SCells to Systems5.0
IDPT 600SThesis Defense9.0
NEUR 500SStatistics for Neuro/Pharm Research2.0
NEUR 501SNeuroscience 1st Lab Rotation4.0
NEUR 502SNeuroscience 2nd Lab Rotation4.0
NEUR 503SNeuroscience 3rd Lab Rotatin4.0
NEUR 508SGraduate Neuroscience I2.5
NEUR 600SNeuroscience Thesis Research (multiple semesters, as required)54.0-72.0
NEUR 609SGraduate Neuroscience II4.0
Advanced Neuroscience Course
Select at least one of the following:1.0-4.0
Advanced Cellular and Developmental Neuroscience
Advanced Systems and Behavioral Neuroscience
Motor Systems
Suggested Electives *
Advanced Cell Biology
Graduate Pharmacology
Graduate Physiology
Prin of Neuropharmacology
Fundamentals in Neuropharmacology
Total Credits103.5-125.5
*

Additional courses from the Biomedical Graduate programs may be taken as electives. Students should check with the College of Medicine's School of Biomedical Sciences and Professional Studies programs.

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