Didactic Training

Course work for the doctoral program is divided into four components:

  1. Prerequisites which define the level of entry into the program
  2. Required core program which is analogous to the major
  3. Elective courses, which are not required but are encouraged
  4. Seminars and literature review.


  • Differential calculus (MATH 124; 5 cr )
  • Fundamental Concepts in Medicinal Chemistry (MEDCH 400; 3 cr)

Applicants with a PharmD degree should have fulfilled the medicinal chemistry requirement. For those who have not, MEDCH 400 can be taken in Autumn quarter of their first year. Candidates are accepted into the program on the condition that any deficiencies in course requirements are rectified by the end of the first academic year.

Core Program:

This didactic core consists of the following disciplines and specific courses:

  • PCEUT 506, pharmacokinetic principles (6 cr)
  • PCEUT 501, advanced pharmacokinetics (5 cr)
  • PCEUT 502, Pharmacokinetics of Drug Metabolism (4 cr)
  • PCEUT 503, Drug Transport and Delivery (5 cr)
  • PCHOL 510-13, General Pharmacology (2 cr each/8 cr total)
  • BIOST 511, Medical Biometry I (4 cr)
  • BIOST 512, Medical Biometry II (4 cr)
  • TC 509, Writing the scientific article (3 cr)
  • PCEUT 600, 800 (variable credits)

The above core courses are considered essential for all students in the program. It is unlikely that any of these courses would be waived, except for students entering with previous graduate-level course work in the required areas.

In addition, all students must attend the following training sessions, preferably during the first academic year: Chemical Safety, Biological Safety, and Bio-ethic training. Radiation Safety and Animal Care may also be required at some point, if relevant to the student’s thesis research.

Directed Electives:

The purpose of elective coursework is to provide an enhancement of the core training. By its nature, it is highly individualized and should be geared to suit individual interests. There is no formal requirement for elective coursework in the Pharmaceutics doctoral program. However, the student is encouraged to take elective courses that might be a benefit to their thesis project and career goals. Courses that might be of interest to students in our program include:


  • PCEUT 513, Basic Concepts in Pharmacogenetics and Toxicogenomics (3 cr)
  • MEDCH 501, 502, 503, Advanced Medicinal Chemistry (4 cr each)
  • MEDCH 527, Drug Metabolism (4 cr)
  • MEDCH 530, Mass Spectrometry of Drugs, Toxicants and Metabolites (3 cr)
  • BIOC 530, Introduction to Structural Biology (3 cr)
  • ENVH 533, Molecular Toxicology (2 cr)
  • ENVH 567, Mechanisms of Carcinogenesis (2 cr)
  • GENOM 465, Advanced Human Genetics (4 cr)
  • IMMUN 532, Advanced Immunology (4 cr)
  • PBIO 509, Neuroendocrinology (3 cr)

Biologics/Drug Delivery

  • PCEUT 586, Pharmaceutical Biotechnology (3 cr)
  • BIOEN 550, Transport and Rate Processes (3 cr)
  • BIOEN 576, Protein Engineering (4 cr)
  • BIOEN 592, Surface Analysis (3 cr)
  • CONJ 501, 502, 503, Molecular Basis of Cell Function (3 cr each)
  • GENOM 552, Technologies for Genome Analysis (1.5 cr)
  • GENOM 520, Protein Technologies (1.5 cr)
  • GENOM 530, Advanced Genetic Analysis (1.5 cr)
  • MEDCH 541, Mass Spectrometry Based Proteomics (3 cr)
  • PABIO 525, Cell Surface Membrane in Cell Sociology and Immunology (2 cr)
  • PBIO 507, Cardiovascular Respiratory Physiology (3 cr)
  • PHCOL 530, Neuronal Signaling Pathways (2 cr)

Pharmacology/Cell Biology

  • PHCOL 528, Neuropsychopharmacology (2 cr)
  • PHCOL 529, Ion Channel Pharmacology (2 cr)
  • PHCOL 530, Neuronal Signaling Pathways (2 cr)
  • PHCOL 531, Genetic Analysis of Signaling Systems (3 cr)
  • PHCOL 533, Molecular Toxicology (2 cr)
  • PHCOL 534, Molecular Basis of Addictive Drug Action (2 cr)
  • PHCOL 535, Transcriptional Control in Human Disease (2 cr)
  • PHCOL 536, Free Radicals in Health and Disease (2 cr)
  • PHCOL 537, Molecular Neurobiology of the Cell Membrane (2 cr)

Physiological Modeling/Biostatistics

  • BIOST 514, Biostatistics I (4 cr)
  • BIOST 515, Biostatistics II (4 cr)
  • BIOST 521, Biostatistics for Experimentalists (4 cr)
  • BIOST 524, Design of Medical Studies (3 cr)
  • BIOST 533, Classical Theory of Linear Models (3 cr)
  • BIOST 534, 535, 538, Statistical Computing (3 cr each)
  • BIOEN 542, Computer Simulation in Biology (3 cr)
  • BIOEN 550, Transport and Rate Processes (3 cr)

Seminars and Literature Review

  • PCEUT 520: Seminar (1 cr/quarter; 3 qtr/year until graduation)
    Beginning in the second year, students are to make 1 presentation each year, with a maximum of 4 presentations by the time of graduation. A general topic seminar is presented in the second year; and research presentation in subsequent years.
  • PCEUT 583: Journal club (1 cr/quarter; 3 qtr/year until graduation)
    Students are to make 2 presentations each year until graduation. Journal club presentations are to begin at the second academic year, except for the quarter that the student is scheduled to present a PCEUT 520 seminar series.


  • PCEUT 600, 800 (variable credits)

Students entering the doctoral program are required to complete 3 research laboratory rotations (PCEUT 600, 2 cr), one per quarter, starting Autumn quarter of their first year. A student may opt to complete a rotation in the Summer quarter before the initiation of classes.

This will involve an early appointment in the department and, thus, decisions must be made at the time they accept our offer to enroll in the doctoral program. The matching of available labs with each incoming student will be facilitated by the 1st year graduate advisor. Student preferences will be given due consideration.

Students must choose thesis advisor by the end of spring quarter in their first academic year (See Appendix A for additional details).

Students must begin research in the lab of their advisor by summer quarter at the end of their first academic year (PCEUT 600, variable credit). Due to the course work and research demands of the doctoral program, most students may find that after-class and off-hours are the best and most productive time for their laboratory research (See Appendix A for additional details).

After successful completion of the Master’s Bypass requirement (see Appendix A for details), students will sign up for PCEUT 800,

Cumulative Examination

Students are to begin taking cumulative exams in the Autumn quarter of their second academic year, and are to continue taking them at every offering until completion of pass requirements or until they take the maximum of eight exams. A total of eight exams will be offered, two each in Autumn, Winter, Spring and Summer quarter. For each exam, there will be two questions to be answered.

Students must pass 4 of 8 exams to complete the Cum requirement and to continue their pursuit of the Ph.D. degree. Students that do not achieve this goal will be given the option of completing requirements for a terminal Master’s degree or withdrawal from the program.