The Graduate School does not set course requirements; these are set by the Field of BMCB and your Special Committee (see Course Enrollment).  You should talk to the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) and/or your Special Committee about the courses that you should take.  Dates for course enrollment are set by the University Registrar (  Make sure that you register in accordance with the published dates.  NOTE:  The Graduate School will only consider Course Enrollment Petitions in extremely extenuating circumstances.

Federal regulations require that all students enroll in at least 12 credit hours/semester.  You should not feel obligated to enroll in 12 credit hours of actual coursework unless your DGS/Special Committee consider(s) it necessary.  Enroll only in the courses that you need/want to take.  In the fall and spring semesters, the Graduate School will enroll students in their Graduate Dissertation Research course in order to ensure that your record reflects 12 credit hours.  

Summer Enrollment:  All graduate students are required to enroll in the Graduate Dissertation Research (via Student Center) for the summer; the deadline for this is the end of May.  This is necessary if you are receiving a stipend or plan to use university facilities such as libraries, computer centers, and the Gannett Health Center.  (Please note:  If you register after the published deadline, FICA taxes will be withdrawn from your paycheck.)

Time Away From the University:  The graduate student schedule/calendar does NOT follow the undergraduate schedule.  Graduate students are paid on a 12-month stipend and are expected to be present and actively working on their academics and research project unless the university itself is officially closed.  If you plan on being gone for a significant period of time, you must have the approval of your advisor and notify the Graduate Field Assistant of your intentions.

Core Courses
  • BIOMG 8310 Advanced Biochemical Methods I – Lab Rotations (Fall)
  • BIOMG 8320 Advanced Biochemical Methods II – Lab Rotations (Spring)
  • BIOMG 8369 Foundations & Frontiers in Cell & Molecular Biology (Fall)
  • BIOMG 8370 Foundations & Frontiers in Cell & Molecular Biology (Spring)

Focused Topics: Choose two of the following courses

  • BIOMG 6310 Protein Structure, Dynamics, and Function (Fall)
  • BIOMG 6330 Biosynthesis of Macromolecules (Fall)
  • BIOMG 6360 Functional Organization of Eukaryotic Cells (Spring)
  • BIOMG 6390 The Nucleus (Spring)
  • BIOMG 6870 Tricks of the Trade: How to Use Genetics to Dissect Cells, Molecules and Developmental Pathways (Spring 2020 – offered every two years)- students can take this in year one or two
One quantitative methods course (to be taken in the first or second year)
  • BTRY 3010 (Fall) OR
  • BTRY 6010 – (Fall) OR
  • BTRY 6020 – (Spring) OR
  • BIOMG 8340 (Spring 2020 – offered alternate years)

Please note that there is apparently a long break between the two semesters.  However, graduate students are expected to be working on their first or second rotation (see Laboratory Rotations) during the intersession period.  The only time that a graduate student should expect to not be in the lab are the times when the university is officially closed.


  • BIOMG 7510 Ethical Issues and Professional Responsibilities (Spring)
  • BIOMG 7940: Careers in Bioscience Course (offered every other year; students are required to take one Careers course prior to graduation but are encouraged to participate in more.  Each Careers course is developed by different faculty and thus, is different each time it is offered).
  • BIOMG 8300 Friday afternoon MBG seminar, (Fall/Spring)
  • BIOMG 8330 Research Seminar in Biochemistry, (Fall/Spring)
  • Courses needed to complete a minor (chosen in consultation with the Special Committee)


  • BIOMG 8300 Friday afternoon MBG seminar (Fall/Spring)
  • BIOMG 8330 Research Seminar in Biochemistry (Fall/Spring)  Students in their fifth year and beyond must present a seminar each year but are not required to enroll.

Grade Expectations: For courses with a letter grade, students are expected to receive a “B” (3.0) or better in order to remain in good standing in the program.  If a student receives a C+ or lower grade in any core BMCB course, no credit is given for that course, implying that the course must be retaken if it is a required course.