Prospective Students

Frequently Asked Questions

Are you interested in graduate school?

Our graduate program is designed for students committed to pursuing a career in the basic and health related sciences. Our students are trained in the fields of physiology, pathology, pharmacology, endocrinology, and neuroscience. All students enter directly into the Ph.D. program, we do not accept students who wish to receive only the M.S. degree.

What kind of jobs can I get with a Ph.D. in Pharmacodynamics?

Graduates in Pharmacodynamics can compete for jobs in four major areas:

  • Academics: Starting as a post-doctoral researcher with the ultimate goal to assume faculty positions in Departments of Physiology, Pharmacology, Neuroscience and other Life Science in Colleges of Medicine, Pharmacy, Nursing, Veterinary Medicine, and Liberal Arts and Sciences.
  • Industry: Physiologist/pharmacologist in pharmaceutical industries.
  • Research Institute: Physiologist/pharmacologist at biomedical research institutes.
  • Government Laboratories and Regulatory Agencies: Positions of physiologist/pharmacologist in federal and state research laboratories and regulatory agencies.

What will it cost?

All students accepted to pursue a Ph.D. degree receive support in the form of either a teaching or research assistantship. The current (as of Fall 2006) stipend for incoming graduate students is $18,500, which can be increased up to $25,000 if the student is successful in applying for and obtaining a competitive award from within or outside of the University of Florida. Full tuition for the student is also currently paid, and is not deducted from the above mentioned student stipend. Students are required to pay University of Florida fees of ~$500 / semester.

What are the qualifications?

  • Minimum GPA : 3.0 (with strong basic science curriculum).*
  • Minimum TOEFL : 230 (computer).*
  • Strong interest in biomedical research.
  • Minimum GRE score : 1000 (verbal + quantitative).*

*These are the minimum requirements of the University of Florida Graduate School.

What will I have to do during my training?

  • Courses: Students are required to take a set of “core” courses, including molecular and cellular biology, and introductions to physiology and pharmacology. Students then select advanced courses for the remainder of their training. Usually two years of coursework are required to prepare the students for their Doctoral Candidate Qualifying Exams.
  • Research: During the first year of graduate training, students complete three laboratory rotations. In these rotations, students are introduced to the particular research program of each lab, and to laboratory facilities and equipment. One of these rotations may be in the pharmaceutical industry setting. After the completion of the third rotation, the student will select a major advisor and his or her laboratory in which to perform the student’s dissertation research. Note: Students advance directly to candidacy for the Ph.D. degree and do not have to complete an M.S. degree first.
  • Teaching: Students in the department are required to participate in some degree of teaching (grading exams, holding office hours, leading small group discussions, and lecturing) during their training. Although the amount of time and effort required depends on the student’s funding source, required duties will not exceed 13.3 hours per week. Students interested in more teaching experiences have ample opportunities to assist in laboratory and lecture settings.

How long does it take?

On average, students take 4.5 to 5 years to graduate from our department with a Ph.D.

Where is the University of Florida?

The University of Florida is in Gainesville, Florida, which is in the north-central part of the state. For more information about the city, please see the city’s homepage.

Interesting facts about our graduates from the past 10 years:

  • 43% hold faculty positions at universities including Georgetown, Howard, Duke, and the University of Michigan.
  • 14% hold research scientist or director positions in the pharmaceutical industries.
  • 25% of our graduates currently hold postdoctoral positions at major research institutions such as the Mayo Research Institute.
  • One of our graduates is a research scientist for the US Army Medical Research Institute!

About Pharmacology

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Steps required to apply to the graduate program in the Department of Pharmacodynamics.