Anatomy, Cell Biology and Physiology

Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Anatomy and Cell Biology

Indiana University School of Medicine offers two pathways to the PhD degree in Anatomy and Cell Biology. The Education Track prepares students for careers in anatomy and physiology teaching and educational research, and the Biomedical Research Track prepares students for careers in laboratory research.

Education Track PhD

The Education Track PhD program prepares doctoral-level anatomy educators who are capable of teaching all of the anatomical disciplines and physiology to undergraduate, graduate or professional students and of producing the high-quality educational research and other scholarly work necessary for promotion and tenure.

Biomedical Research Track PhD

PhD Biomedical Research Track students begin the program in August through the IU School of Medicine BioMedical Gateway Program (IBMG) and complete IBMG core courses and three lab rotations before selecting the program and lab they will join for further training. In the second year of PhD study, students take the major anatomy core courses plus foundation courses of a minor discipline (such as physiology or biochemistry).

Advisory Committee

Anatomy, Cell Biology and Physiology PhD students establish an Advisory Committee, headed by the Research Advisor, at the end of their first year. This committee helps the student prepare for the Qualifying Examination (given at the end of the second year), which typically includes the writing and presentation of a Dissertation Research Proposal (extramural grant format).

The Qualifying Examination assesses the student’s competency in the anatomical sub-disciplines and chosen minor and also determines if the student is prepared to begin thesis research.

Upon passing the Qualifying Examination, the student is admitted to candidacy for the PhD. The student’s Committee advises the student throughout the conduct and completion of the doctoral research project, including the writing and defense of a Dissertation.