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Students seeking admission into the PhD program in Translational Biomedicine (PTB) must apply to the Translational, Molecular Medicine, Pharmacology, and Physiology (TMMPP) track within the interdepartmental graduate program in Biological and Biomedical Sciences (BBS) program. The BBS is an umbrella program that encompasses many fields of study in the biological sciences. The program is a part of the Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, yet its students and faculty span the entire university campus including the Yale School of Medicine.

In addition to meeting general BBS requirements, applicants should have a strong background in biological, chemical, and/or physical sciences. For example, an undergraduate major/degree in biology, biochemistry, physiology, genetics, chemistry, physics, mathematics, engineering, or computer science could be appropriate. Courses in biology, biochemistry, organic and physical chemistry, and mathematics through elementary calculus, are strongly recommended. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test is not required, and submitted scores will not be included in the review of an application.

For more information regarding general BBS entrance requirements, please view the BBS Admission Requirements.

Special Requirements for the Ph.D. Degree

The primary mission of the PTB is to prepare the next generation of translational scientists to be forward-thinking leaders in academic research, medicine, education, industry and society. To achieve this mission, the PTB leverages its interdepartmental structure to break down silos between disciplines and to foster a collaborative community comprised of laboratories from across all the departments at the Yale School of Medicine. The PTB program emphasizes a flexible curriculum, personalized professional development, and a supportive environment in which all participants can reach their full potential.

The first 3 to 4 terms of graduate study are spent in formal course work, independent reading, laboratory rotations and early thesis work. Each student’s program of study is designed in consultation with the TMMPP Track Director during the first year and with an advisory committee of the PTB that includes the PTB Director(s) of Graduate Studies once the student affiliates with the PTB, typically in the spring of the first year of study. The goal is to provide both flexibility, rigor and breadth while ensuring that students are well prepared to meet the PTB course requirements and to have a strong foundation for their thesis research. Students also participate in at least three laboratory rotations during the first two terms.

PTB coursework will include at least five graduate-level courses that will typically be taken over the first four terms. Students must meet the Graduate School requirement of a grade of Honors in 2 courses, if necessary taking additional courses to fulfill this requirement. The Graduate School requires this requirement be met by the end of the second year.

PTB students are expected to take at least one of the following: PTB550a, PTB690a and/or PTB504a. Our core course, PTB604b, and the year-long graduate seminar course in the TMMPP Track, are required. PTB students are also required to take one course in biostatistics (from several offered). In the second year PTB students are required to take 4 modules (1 year) of the Mentored Clinical Experience (MCE) and the PTB Grant Writing Course.

A qualifying examination is given during the second year of study and consists of a written research proposal based on the proposed thesis project followed by an oral exam. Within one year after a successful qualifying exam the student schedules the first thesis committee meeting and provides an updated summary of the thesis project (in the form of a revised Specific Aims page and an NIH-style “Introduction” to the revised Aims). At this meeting the student is considered for advancement to candidacy, which must occur prior to the end of Year 3. In addition to all other requirements, students must successfully complete the Responsible Conduct in Research course (PTB650/PHAR 580/C&MP 650/PATH 660) prior to the end of their first year of study. In their fourth year of study, all students must successfully complete B&BS 503, the RCR Refresher for Senior BBS Students.

MD/PhD Students

M.D./Ph.D. students who affiliate with the PhD program in Translational Biomedicine follow a different course than other incoming graduate students, resulting in some modifications of the academic requirements for the Ph.D. portion of the M.D./Ph.D. degree. Typically, one or more research rotations are done during the first two years of medical school (in many cases, several rotations are done during the summer between Years 1 and Year 2). No set number of research rotations is required. M.D./Ph.D. students officially affiliate with the PhD program in Translational Biomedicine after selecting a thesis adviser and consulting with the Director(s) of Graduate Studies (DGS). M.D./Ph.D. students interested in affiliating with the PTB are encouraged to consult with the DGS as early as possible to determine an appropriate set of courses tailored to the student’s background and interests.

The courses, rotations, and teaching requirements for M.D./Ph.D. students entering the PTB (see below) may be modified from the normal requirements for Ph.D. students with permission of the DGS. Although five graduate-level courses are still required, some medical school courses are recognized. M.D./Ph.D. students must also meet the Graduate School requirement of a grade of Honors in two courses, if necessary taking additional courses beyond the five required in the department to fulfill this requirement. Students must also maintain an average grade of High Pass in all courses. M.D./Ph.D students are not required to take the MCE course. In addition, only one term of teaching is required.

M.D./Ph.D. students will be admitted to candidacy once they have completed their course work, obtained two Honors grades, passed their qualifying exam, and had their dissertation prospectus accepted by their thesis committee.

Master’s Degrees

MPhil: See Degree Requirements under Policies and Regulations.

MS: Students are not admitted for this degree. They may receive this recognition if they leave Yale without completing the qualifying exam but have satisfied the course requirements as described above, as well as the Graduate School’s Honors requirement. Students who are eligible for or who have already received the M.Phil. will not be awarded the M.S.