Academic Programs Catalog

College of Osteopathic Medicine

Graduate Study

Graduate programs in the college have the objective of serving the national need for medical educators and scientists. To accomplish this objective, the college seeks to educate graduate students broadly in the basic subject matter pertaining to their chosen fields of study, train them for teaching and research in specialized aspects of their field, and develop their independent and creative thinking abilities. The graduate study program for each student is arranged to suit individual needs within the general graduate regulations of the unit, college, and university.

The college provides an opportunity for graduate study which emphasizes a single discipline or bridges multiple disciplines. The Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees are attainable separately or together with the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree. The college also provides opportunities for postdoctoral research training. Financial aid is available competitively for all levels of graduate study.

Disciplinary graduate degree programs are offered by the departments of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Pharmacology and Toxicology, and Physiology. An interdisciplinary program may be arranged by combining the disciplinary graduate degree programs of two departments.  Other units in the college may provide tutelage and facilities for graduate training and arrange for a disciplinary graduate degree in cooperation with one of the departments that offer degree programs.

The four departments, listed above, offering graduate study programs are responsible to the College of Osteopathic Medicine jointly with other colleges. Whether a student's program is administratively associated with the College of Osteopathic Medicine depends on the nature of the proposed program and the career aspirations. A student accepted for admission by a given unit may apply for association with the College of Osteopathic Medicine.

The College of Osteopathic Medicine partners with the Eli Broad College of Business to offer a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine and Master of Business Administration joint-degree program jointly administered by both colleges. For information about the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine and Master of Business Administration dual-degree program, contact the Associate Dean in either college.

The College of Osteopathic Medicine cooperates in offering the Master of Arts degree in Education for the Health Professions, which is administered by the College of Education. For information about the Master of Arts degree in Education for the Health Professions, refer to the statement in the College of Education section of this catalog.

The College of Osteopathic Medicine cooperates with the Colleges of Human Medicine, Nursing, and Social Science in offering the Master of Public Health in Public Health degree (M.P.H.), which is administered by the College of Human Medicine. For information about the Master of Public Health degree in Public Health, refer to the statement in the College of Human Medicine section of this catalog.

Students who are enrolled in Master of Science degree programs in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics may elect a Specialization in Food Safety.  For additional information, refer to the statement on the specialization in the College of Veterinary Medicine section of this catalog.

Students who are enrolled in the professional program that leads to the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree may elect specializations in Infancy and Early Childhood. For additional information, refer to the statement on Interdepartmental Graduate Specializations in Infancy and Early Childhood in the College of Social Science section of this catalog.

Master of Science

The Master of Science degree is offered by the departments of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Pharmacology and Toxicology, and Physiology.

Attainment of a master's degree requires excellence in scholarly motivation and achievement. The programs for the degree emphasize a broad education and an introduction to research in a chosen field of study.

In addition to meeting the requirements of the University, students must meet the requirements specified below.

Admission

Admission to a master's degree program may be granted to a student who has a record of academic excellence and is acceptable to a unit and the college. Units may require applicants to take and submit the results of the Graduate Record Examination. An undergraduate major or its equivalent in an appropriate subject–matter field is required. Normally, a grade–point average of at least 3.00 in previous academic work is required for admission to regular status. Students with incomplete records, incomplete interpretation of available records, or minor deficiencies may be admitted to provisional status.

Requirements for the Degree

A major advisor is appointed, and a guidance committee may be appointed, with the consent of the student to help the student plan a program of study and research. A copy of the approved program is filed with the unit and the college.

The minimum number of credits required for the master's degree is 30, including 4 credits of master's thesis research for students enrolled under Plan A. A maximum of 10 credits may be authorized for thesis research. Upon the completion of the program and a report or thesis on the research, the student takes a final oral examination conducted by a faculty committee appointed by the unit chairperson. A committee report, including recommendations about further graduate study by the student, is filed with the unit chairperson and the dean.

Time Limit

The time limit for the completion of the master's degree is six calendar years from the beginning of the first semester in which credit was earned toward the degree.

Doctor of Philosophy

Attainment of the Doctor of Philosophy degree requires excellence in scholarship and comprehensive knowledge in a chosen field of study. Programs for the degree emphasize training for original research and teaching in a specialized aspect of the chosen field of study, the development of independent and creative thinking, and the completion of a dissertation that represents a new and significant contribution to knowledge. The departments of the college which offer programs leading to the Doctor of Philosophy degree are Biochemistry, Microbiology,  Pharmacology and Toxicology, and Physiology. 

In addition to meeting the requirements of the University, students must meet the requirements specified below.
The College of Natural Science administers an interdepartmental doctoral degree program in cell and molecular biology and an interdepartmental doctoral degree program in genetics.

Admission

Admission to a doctoral program may be granted to a student who has a record of academic excellence and is acceptable to a unit and the college. Units may require applicants to take and submit the results of the Graduate Record Examination. Normally, a grade–point average of at least 3.00 in previous academic work is required for admission to regular status. Students with incomplete records, incomplete interpretation of available records, or minor deficiencies may be admitted to provisional status.

A master's degree in an appropriate subject–matter field may be required for admission to a doctoral program. If a student is admitted without a master's degree, course credits equivalent to those earned for a master's degree are required as part of the doctoral program.

Guidance Committee

The guidance committee files a report with the unit. For the purpose of evaluating the final oral examination and the dissertation, the guidance committee may be supplemented by two additional faculty members appointed by the dean. A committee report, bearing the vote and signature of each member and the comments by any dissenting member, is filed with the unit and the college.

 


Dual Degree Medical Scientist Training Program

The Dual Degree Medical Scientist Training Program is a special program for students who want to earn both a professional medical doctoral degree (Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine) and a graduate research doctoral degree (Doctor of Philosophy). The program seeks to meet a national need for physicians who are proficient in research as well as in medicine, and who will pursue careers as faculty members in medical schools and institutes.

The program is designed to select, educate, and train highly motivated students having outstanding research and academic qualifications. Trainees pursue medical and graduate studies in parallel, meet regularly with peers in seminars, and engage in medical and graduate level courses and clerkships, as well as in research with highly qualified mentors.

A student who is interested in this program should contact the office of the associate dean for research and advanced study in the College of Osteopathic Medicine.

For additional information, refer to the statement on Special Programs in the Graduate Education section of this catalog.

 


Postdoctoral Research Training

Postdoctoral training increasingly is necessary for students who want to pursue careers in biomedical research. The college offers individualized programs for such advanced graduate study in most of its units. Postdoctoral training is normally obtained with a faculty member who is established and productive in a particular area of research. Application, acceptance, and program are arranged by the student and the faculty member with the concurrence of the unit chairperson. Students who hold either the Ph.D or the D.O. degree are encouraged to consider further training in research, which may provide an alternative to a second doctoral degree as preparation for a career as a medical educator and scientist. Substantive financial aid is available competitively through fellowships and traineeships awarded to the student directly and associateships provided by the faculty member from a grant or contract. Usually, postdoctoral research training requires two years or more, and accomplishment is evidenced in the publication of articles in refereed scientific journals.

 


Facilities for Research and Service

In addition to its disciplinary departments and interdisciplinary programs, the College provides certain specialized facilities such as the Carcinogenesis Laboratory, and the Department of Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine. Students who are pursuing Doctor of Philosophy degrees may make arrangements through their major departments to study in these facilities. Postdoctoral study in these facilities may be arranged with an appropriate faculty member.

 


Administration of Research and Graduate Study

A graduate study advisory committee represents the College faculty and provides advice and recommendations to the Dean on graduate study  in the college.

The Institute for Research and Advanced Study serves to promote and foster research and graduate and postdoctoral study in the college. This Institute provides general information about predoctoral and postdoctoral study and refers interested persons to appropriate units or facilities for more specific information. This Institute also offers assistance in applying for extramural grants, contracts, and fellowships.

The Office for Graduate Medical Education and the Office of Continuing Medical Education, respectively, provide for medical postdoctoral clinical training and for continuing medical education customarily associated with professional certification and licensing requirements.