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    University of Massachusetts Boston
   
 
  Nov 19, 2017
 
2015-2016 Graduate Catalog 
  
2015-2016 Graduate Catalog

Integrative Biosciences, PhD (Bioinformatics track)


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The Integrative Biosciences (IB) Graduate Program is a college-wide initiative in the College of Science and Mathematics (CSM). The goal of the Integrative Biosciences Program is to train independent researchers able to apply interdisciplinary approaches to solving problems in the areas of biochemistry, biophysics, and bioinformatics. These rapidly developing fields require biologists, computational scientists, physicists, and chemists to acquire skills and knowledge across the disciplines in order to develop a common platform aimed at advancing our understanding of the biological phenomena. Applying single-discipline approaches cannot adequately solve modern biomedical theoretical and empirical problems. The program will train researchers that are prepared to tackle such problems.

The following elements of the IB program are designed to emphasize its interdisciplinary and collaborative nature:

  • As part of the Program Seminar, students will learn about the research conducted in the faculty laboratories in different departments within the College of Science and Mathematics.
  • Students are required to take at least one course in each of the other two tracks.
  • Written qualifying exams include at least one topic outside of student’s primary track.
  • Students have primary and secondary dissertation advisors from different disciplines.
  • Dissertation includes a section that explicitly describes an interdisciplinary aspect of student’s research.
  • Student training will include rotations in laboratories that belong to different tracks and departments.

Bioinformatics Track Core Courses


Students in the bioinformatics track must take three courses from the following list:

Admission Requirements


Applicants are required to demonstrate adequate preparation at the undergraduate level in the form of relevant coursework and research experience. Given the multi-disciplinary nature of the program, we expect that our applicants will be undergraduates with bachelor of science degrees in biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, environmental or computer science, or graduates with master’s degrees in these areas.

Application and Deadlines

An online application is available here.

Fall admission: February 1
Review of fall applications will commence on January 2. Fall applicants are strongly encouraged to apply by this deadline, as priority in funding will be given to these early applications.


Spring admission: November 1
We begin reviewing applications and making offers within a month of the deadline, but continue reviewing applications and making awards until available slots are filled.

Additional Application Requirements

In additon to the completed admission form, students should also submit:

  • GRE test scores.
  • TOEFL or IELTS test scores. Required for applicants from outside the US.
  • Statement of interests and intent. The university requires a detailed, two-part statement of interests and intent. In the first part, include your reasons for wishing to pursue graduate studies. In the second part, describe the area of research you wish to pursue. Explain why an interdisciplinary program is best suited for your research interests, and indicate which of the three program tracks (biochemistry, biophysics, or bioinformatics) you would like to pursue. It is helpful if you identify members of the faculty whose research interests are similar to your own (see list of participating faculty). These faculty members will likely serve as laboratory rotation advisors. Feel free to contact individual faculty members to discuss your interests and inquire about availability of positions.
  • Three letters of recommendation.

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