Fall Terms Courses and Descriptions

icon_note   Note: Click on course titles to access the description.


INTD



BBSC



BCMB



CELL



CTPS



HPTM



MDPH



MICR



MMSC



NEUR



GNRS



PATH



PHTO


Basic Biomedical Science Course Descriptions


Laboratory Rotation (BBSC 6043)

2022 Lab Rotation Report Form
2022 Syllabus

This is a required core course in the Basic Biomedical Science Curriculum (BBSC). Students in the BBSC are required to take three 8-week rotations in a minimum of two independent laboratories during their first year in the BBSC. The first two rotations must be performed in different laboratories. The third rotation should only be performed with a previous rotation mentor if there is a commitment that the student will be joining the lab and therefore does not need to rotate with a third faculty mentor; otherwise the student should perform all rotations with different mentors. Mentor expectations and grading criteria and student course schedules should be communicated between the mentor and student at the start of the rotation. The time commitment is at least 6-18 hours/week in the lab, but will vary. Students should respect the timing of experimental protocols and usual lab procedures and schedules. Faculty should appreciate the demands of class attendance and coursework on students; there should be a reasonable amount of flexibility in apportioning the working hours during a week or even among weeks. If it is necessary for the student to work outside of a typical work week or typical work-day hours, this should be clearly communicated to the student when the rotation is initially arranged. Students will be required to submit a written report that includes a description of the research, experiments attempted, interpretations, accomplishments, etc., along with a Student Evaluation Report form completed by the faculty member.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I, II, III with no more than six credit hours (16 weeks) in one lab
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 6-8 hours/week in the lab
Instructor: Toliver-Kinsky


Critical Reading of Scientific Literature (BBSC 6104)

2021 Syllabus

This eight-week course is designed to introduce graduate students to critical concepts involved in understanding scientific literature. Emphasis will be placed on analyzing, comprehending, interpreting and evaluating scientific articles from peer-reviewed journals. This class is based on discussion format, and students will be expected to actively participate in classroom discussions, as well as lead one classroom discussion on an article of their choice. Grades will be based on the performance of presentation, attendance, and class participation.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 1; Conference/Discussion 1
Instructor: Vargas


Neuronal Transmission (BBSC 6126)

2019 Syllabus

This course provides a general background in cellular neuroscience with an emphasis on neuronal synaptic transmission. The first part of the course covers structure and molecular composition of excitatory and inhibitory synapses. Topics covered include: synaptic structure and dynamics, molecular composition of post-synaptic ligand-gated ion channels, metabotropic receptors, signal transduction pathways, functional analysis of postsynaptic currents, synaptic plasticity and neuronal homeostasis. The second part of the course includes an in-depth reading and discussion of topics related to synaptic receptors mediating neuronal transmission in the central nervous system. This course will prepare students for upper level Neuroscience and Neuropharmacology courses and is also suitable for students interested in basic cellular mechanisms underlying brain function. Grading is based on written midterm and final examinations.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6302, BBSC 6303, or consent of instructor
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 1
Instructor: Laezza


Teaching in Molecular Biology and Genetics (BBSC 6127)

2021 Syllabus

In this course, trainees will learn and practice how to facilitate small-group learning teams. Trainees will acquire teaching skills through workshops, observing faculty during small group discussions and finally applying these skills to serve as facilitators in BBSC 6304 Molecular Biology and Genetics (MBG) small-group discussions. Facilitator Skills Workshops will be imparted by personnel from the School of Medicine Office of Educational Development. MBG course instructors will meet with the trainees and provide key discussion topics and teaching tactics prior to MBG small-group discussions with enrolled students. The trainees will then serve as lead facilitators for MBG small-group discussions to practice newly learned skills. In addition, trainees will participate in problem set review sessions for MBG students to observe and learn different teaching styles employed in an informal question/answer teaching sessions. Each facilitator will provide formative and summative evaluations of their co-facilitators and those BBSC 6304 students in their respective small groups.

Grading will be on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis. A grade of satisfactory will be dependent on: (a) attendance of the student to all scheduled course sessions and instructor discussions (as detailed above); (b) writing a one-page reflective piece that will serve as self-evaluation; (c) acceptable performance as a facilitator judged by the course instructor with input from students enrolled in the MBG course.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6304 or consent of instructor
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Conference 2
Instructor: Wairkar


Teaching in Biostatistics (BBSC 6128)

2020 Syllabus

In this course, students will learn and practice skills necessary to facilitate students participating in biostatistics labs. Facilitator Skills Workshops will be imparted by personnel from the School of Medicine Office of Educational Development. At the end of the course, students will: (a) Be able to distinguish between actual content (the concept the small group is working on) and process (how the group works on acquiring and developing knowledge on that concept); (b) Understand the various group member roles related to both content and process; (c) Have practiced methods for effective communication; (d) Have learned effective questioning skills; (e) Have practiced effective listening skills and empathy; (f) Be capable of providing effective feedback; (g) Be capable of maintaining engaging group discussions and (h) Be able to provide constructive evaluations. Students will serve as lead facilitators for the lab component of students enrolled in BBSC 6222 (Biostatistics), where they will implement and develop their facilitation skills. Prior to each session with the BBSC 6222 students, small group facilitators will be provided with fully answered laboratory solutions and will have an opportunity to discuss these computer labs with course instructors. Each facilitator will provide formative and summative evaluations of those BBSC 6222 students in their lab sessions. This course is offered on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis. A grade of satisfactory will be dependent on: (a) attendance of the student to all scheduled course sessions and instructor discussions (as detailed above); (b) writing a one-page reflective piece that will serve as self-evaluation; (c) acceptable performance as facilitator as judged by the course instructor, after consulting with the students being facilitated.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6222 or PHS 633 Biostatistics or PHS 6347 Applied Statistical Methods
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 2
Instructor: Spratt


Responsible Conduct in Biomedical Research (BBSC 6129)

2022 Syllabus

This course will cover all topics recommended by NIH for required instruction in responsible conduct of research (RCR), described in NOT-OD-10-019, and will incorporate contemporary ethical and regulatory issues in modern biomedical research.  The course will begin in the Fall term and will extend over all 3 terms of the academic year.  Students will register for the course in the Fall term and will be automatically enrolled the following Spring and Summer terms. A grade of "G" (longitudinal) will be assigned at the end of the Fall and Spring terms, and a single, 1-hour course grade will be assigned at the end of the Summer term.  Specific  RCR  topics covered in a given term will be temporally aligned with relevant science or research topics being taught in the Basic Biomedical Sciences Curriculum courses during that term.  Small group sessions and case studies will be utilized to discuss and integrate designated RCR topics, and will include various problem-based learning approaches.  The average grade of all sessions over the three terms will be determined, and an average of 80% or greater is required to achieve a grade of Satisfactory.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I, II, III Longitudinal
Year offered: Annually
Hours: Lecture 2; Discussion 14
Instructor: Toliver-Kinsky


Small Sampling of Big Data (BBSC 6130)

2020 Syllabus

This eight-week course is designed to serve as an introduction to and overview of some aspects of modern data analysis in the biological sciences. As the data available to researchers becomes increasingly large, increasingly complex, and is generated faster and faster, content consumers, specialist scientists, and statistical data analysts are faced with problems in terms of management, transport, analysis, and interpretation never before seen. This evolution of data has also changed the ways in which the scientific process, scientific discovery and scientific theory are viewed.  Essentially this course will be divided into six sections:  big data, data sciences, computer science, data analysis, informatics and bioinformatics. Grading will be based on the knowledge and preparation of material, as students are to design a group research project with emphasis on applying big data aspects.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 1
Instructor: Jupiter


General Laboratory Safety (BBSC 6131)

2020 Syllabus

2020 BBSC Calendar

2020 HPTM Calendar

This course has 3 components: (1) online training to ensure knowledge and understanding of safety practices and regulations that pertain to the laboratory environment, (2) a practical portion for hands-on training and demonstration of required competencies, and (3) discussion of laboratory accidents and risk assessment. Course topics will include: general lab safety, fire safety, chemical safety, chemical hoods, chemical disposal, hazard communication, standard precautions, cell lines, introduction to biosafety, biosafety cabinet and aerosol precautions, and introduction to vaccines and risk assessment. Students will be required to demonstrate competency in the use of fire extinguishers, chemical spill response, chemical hood use, appropriate use of personal protective equipment, the use of biosafetycabinets, tissue culture techniques, and biohazard spill response. Grades will be based on demonstration of competencies and attendance. Students will receive bsl2 certification upon successful completion of the course.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 2
Instructor: Brocard


Teaching in Biochemistry (BBSC 6133)

In this course, students will learn and practice skills necessary to facilitate small group learning teams. At the end of the course, students will: (a) Be able to distinguish between actual content (the concept the small group is working on) and process (how the group works on acquiring and developing knowledge on that concept); (b) Understand the various group member roles related to both content and process; (c) Have practiced methods for effective communication; (d) Have learned effective questioning skills; (e) Have practiced effective listening skills and empathy; (f) Be capable of providing effective feedback; (g) Be capable of maintaining engaging group discussions and (h) Be able to provide constructive evaluations. Grading will be on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis. A grade of satisfactory will be dependent on (a) attendance of the student to all scheduled course workshops, facilitator previews, and small-group problem solving sessions, and (b) acceptable performance as a facilitator judged by the course director with input from students enrolled in the BBSC 6303 Biochemistry course.

Credit: 1
Prerequisites: Consent of Instructor
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours: Discussion 1
Instructor: Smith


Frontiers of Science (BBSC 6195)

2022 Syllabus

This course provides students the opportunity to hear about the latest advancements and techniques in a wide variety of biomedical sciences. Students are required to attend seminars by on- or off-campus speakers during each of the Fall and Spring terms. Students choose twelve seminars to attend on the basis of student interest and/or program recommendations. Grades will be satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U) based on attendance.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Seminar 1
Instructor: Toliver-Kinsky, Vargas


Neuronal Excitability (BBSC 6207)

2018 Syllabus

This eight-week course deals with fundamental concepts that underlie electrical excitability, conduction of electrical activity and presynaptic mechanisms. Topics covered include electrochemical potentials, properties of voltage-gated channels, electrotonic spread vs. propagated activity, regulation of exocytosis, quantal analysis of transmitter release and analytical techniques including current and voltage clamp, single channel recording and noise analysis. The class will be presented as lectures with student discussion. Grades will be based on class participation and examinations.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6302, BBSC 6303, or consent of instructor
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3, Conference/Discussion 1
Instructor: Hamill


Principles of Drug Action, Pharmacokinetics and Biotransformation (BBSC 6208)

2020 Syllabus

This eight-week course will cover the principles underlying drug and toxin mechanisms of action, as well as their metabolism and clearance. In particular, we will focus on mechanisms underlying the interaction between hormone and neurotransmitter receptors and full, partial, and inverse agonists, as well as analysis of the mechanisms underlying the actions of competitive, partially competitive and non-competitive inhibitors. Additionally, the mechanisms underlying allosteric modulation by drugs and endogenous ligands will be discussed along with how receptor activation engages underlying effector mechanisms. The latter portion of the course will focus on the mechanisms underlying absorption, distribution, elimination and metabolism of both toxins and therapeutic drugs. This will include metabolism by phase I and phase II enzymes, glutathione reductase, as well as drug elimination, duration of action, plateau principle, and continuous and intermittent dosing paradigms. The course will be taught primarily in lecture format with discussion of primary research articles. Grading will be based on class participation, homework problems, two written exams and a 15-minute oral presentation covering the similarities and differences between a pair of drugs that have similar therapeutic goals.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6302, BBSC 6303, or consent of instructor
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3, Conference/Discussion 1
Instructor: Snodgrass, Zhou


Fundamentals of Inflammation (BBSC 6210)

2020 Syllabus

This seven-week course deals with fundamental concepts pertaining to inflammation. Inflammation plays a necessary role in wound healing and tissue surveillance, but can also lead to chronic wounds and pathologic states such as inflammatory bowel disease. By moving fluids and white blood cells from the blood into extravascular tissues the host can eliminate abnormal cells, foreign particles, microorganisms, etc. and initiate repair processes. Topics include inflammatory cells, the role that pathogens (bacterial, viral and parasitic) play in inflammation, the mediators (lipids, cytokines, peptides, and other molecules) and cellular events involved in cell recruitment and movement through the vessel wall into tissue spaces. Common inflammatory processes and wound healing will be discussed. Grades will be determined by performance in the discussion of current literature and on one take-home short-essay exam.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6302, BBSC 6303, BBSC 6304 or consent of instructor
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3; Conference/Discussion 1
Instructor: Hawkins, Midori-Horiuti, Reyes


Vaccine Development Pathway: From Discovery To Licensure (BBSC 6219)

2020 Syllabus

This eight-week introductory course will be taught in lecture format with a small number of expert lecturers. The course is designed to provide the basic scientist with an understanding of vaccine development from conceptualization through development, testing, and utilization. This multidisciplinary course was designed to introduce students to all of the aspects of vaccine development and utilization to include aspects of vaccines for infectious diseases and chronic non-infectious diseases (e.g., cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, and addiction). Grades will be based on performance of two examinations and class attendance.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6302, BBSC 6303, BBSC 6304, or consent of instructor
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3.5
Instructor: Milligan, Bourne


Biostatistics (BBSC 6222)

2020 Syllabus

This is a required core course in the Basic Biomedical Science Curriculum (BBSC) which will provide students in the basic sciences with an introduction to statistical thinking. Specific topics include basic summaries, probability, inference, experimental design, hypothesis testing, and statistical modeling. Students will learn about the difference between populations and samples. They will learn the proper way to describe experimental results based on descriptive statistics and visualization strategies. They will learn about experimental design and hypothesis testing. Specifically, they will learn when to correctly apply and how to perform the one sample t-test, student's t-test, paired t-test, one-way ANOVA, two-way ANOVA, repeated measures ANOVA, linear regression, correlation tests, nonparametric tests, and chi-square analysis. They will learn the basics of power analyses and sample size calculations.  Each concept will be accompanied by a 2hr computer lab where the students will practice with real data examples using the software package R. Additionally students will periodically critique basic science articles to learn the best way to present statistical results in manuscript format. This will include discussions about graphs and figures as well as how results are presented and discussed throughout the articles.  Grading will be based on the performance of multiple lab assignments, several in-class quizzes, a final take-home exam, and class participation.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6302, BBSC 6303 or Consent of instructor
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Spratt


Biochemistry (BBSC 6303)

2020 Syllabus
2020 Calendar

This is a required foundation course in the Basic Biomedical Science Curriculum (BBSC). The primary goal of the course is to train students to develop their ability to critically analyze data. The course deals with the fundamental forces that provide the bases for molecular interactions, and the translation of these forces into the structure and function of proteins and nucleic acids. Emphasis will be on the principles that give rise to these forces; on applying the principles to biochemical problems; and on the application of the principles in understanding macromolecular structure and function. The course also provides a survey of techniques relevant to subjects discussed. In addition the course presents the general principles of regulation in metabolism, molecular signaling and synthesis and function of different biomolecules as they apply to developing an understanding of regulatory mechanisms in homeostasis and disease. Grades will be determined based on performance on written examinations, problem-solving homework and performance in small-group discussion sessions.

Prerequisites: At least one-year college-level biology and chemistry; biochemistry recommended or consent of instructor
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3; Discussion 1
Instructor: Pettitt, Smith


Molecular Biology and Genetics (BBSC 6304)

2022 Syllabus
2020 Calendar

This is a required foundation course in the Basic Biomedical Science Curriculum (BBSC). It will consist of three lectures per week and two-hour discussion sessions every other week for a total of sixteen weeks. Topics include nucleic acid structure, DNA replication, genetic recombination, recombinant DNA technology, mutations and their repair, transcription and its regulation, translation, Mendelian inheritance, the human genome, microbial genetics, transgenic animals and models of human genetic disorders, and human evolution. Grades will be determined based on the performance on four examinations, graded problem sets, and participation in small-group discussion sessions.

Prerequisites: BBSC 6302, BBSC 6303, or consent of instructor
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3; Conference/Discussion 2
Instructor: Bouyer


Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Course Descriptions


Research (BCMB 6097)

Work is designed to introduce the student to the techniques and philosophy of scientific research and to guide the development of a research problem in the major area of concentration. Provides laboratory experience prior to entering candidacy.  Grade is determined by a written progress report signed by mentor and program director.

Prerequisites: None
Instructor: Muge Kuyumcu-Martinez
Term offered: Fall, Spring  and Summer
Year offered: Annually


Dissertation (BCMB 6099)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing the Doctor of Philosophy degree to enroll in this course.  This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the dissertation for the Doctor of Philosophy degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student's supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Current Concepts in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology (Faculty Seminar) (BCMB 6111)

The objective of this course is to introduce students to current research in the general areas of biochemistry and molecular biology through attendance at faculty seminars. Students will be required to attend departmental seminars in the fall and spring semesters and submit a summary of each seminar attended. Students may choose from Biochemistry and Molecular Biology departmental seminars and Sealy Center for Structural Biology and Molecular Biophysics seminars, and special seminars as communicated by the course director or coordinator. The required number of seminars to be attended will be communicated to the students each semester and will be approximately 75% of the departmental seminars offered that semester (between a minimum of 6 to a maximum of 12 per semester). No textbooks will be required. Grades will be satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory(U) based on attendance and completion of a seminar summary, to include the objectives/hypothesis of the research presented, methodology significant findings, and implications of research. Students will be required to complete and sign a seminar form containing the summary in order to receive credit. Completed forms will be turned into Dr. Morais for review. Failure to turn in the required number of completed forms per semester will result in a grade of "U", unsatisfactory ,for the semester.

1 Credit Hour
Prerequisite: None
Instructor: Marc Morais
Term offered: Summer, Fall and Spring
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 1 hour per seminar attended, 15 weeks.


Biomolecular Thermodynamics (BCMB 6113)

In this 6-weeks course, students will learn thermodynamics of various biomolecular processes, including conformational changes, molecular association / dissociation, and protein-drug interactions. Both theoretical and experimental aspects are covered. Students will also learn the MATLAB software and use it to solve or understand thermodynamic problems.

Prerequisite: None
Instructor: Junji Iwahara, PhD, B. Montgomery Pettitt, PhD
Term offered: Fall, Annually
Hours per week: 1 hour, 1st 6 weeks


Biomolecular Kinetics (BCMB 6114)

In this 6-weeks course, students learn kinetics of various biomolecular processes, including molecular association, dissociation, conformational changes, enzymatic catalysis, and target search. Both theoretical and experimental aspects are covered. Students also learn the MATLAB software and use it to solve or understand various kinetic problems.

Prerequisite: None
Instructor: Junji Iwahara, Tom Smith and Whitney Yin
Term offered: Fall, Annually
Hours per week: 1 hour, 2nd 6 weeks


Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics (BCMB 6208)

Lecturers will select seminal recent papers on principles and novel techniques used in the interpretation of genomic sequencing data, RNA-seq analysis, and data mining of structural and functional databases of genes and proteins. Each student is requested to read all papers during the course, and present one paper with additional background information in a 45-minute lecture. The faculty will give introductory lecturers to the topics of the course with an emphasis on Genomics and Bioinformatics. They will also provide additional advice on the context of the papers in the literature, and will complement the student presentation with comments from his expertise on particular techniques. The student presentations of the papers will include discussions among students and faculty on the scientific background of the papers.

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor or BBSC core
2 Credit Hours
Instructors: Werner Braun, Andrew Routh, Steven Widen
Term offered: Fall
Year offered: Fall, Annually
Hours per week: 2, 16 Weeks


Tutorial for DNA Replication, Repair and Mutagensis (BCMB 6209)

This course deals with various aspects of repair and replication of damaged DNA. A particular focus point will be the interrelationships among repair processes and other important cellular functions. This course uses the tutorial model. On the first class day, each student will choose the topic for his/her presentation from the list provided by the instructors. The list of topics will include state-of-the art articles relating to the given topic. Generally, each student will be responsible for one in-depth presentation on the chosen topic. The first formal session will consist of an introductory lecture by the instructor(s). The following few weeks will be used for preparation by the students for their presentations, after which the first formal student presentation will begin. Since there are no written examinations, class participation is an important part of a tutorial-based class and it is expected that everyone will be actively involved in this endeavor.

While the focus of the course is on repair and replication of damaged DNA, the specific topics will vary from year to year.

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor or BBSC core
Instructor: Louise Prakash, Satya Prakash
Term offered: Fall
Year offered: Fall, Annually
Hours per week: 2, 10 Week Course


Fellowship Writing (BCMB 6231)

This course is required for the 2nd year students to provide them with the framework for their graduate training. The goal of a graduate training is to develop a student into an independent investigator. The trademarks of an independent investigator are the ability to identify a project of significance through critical analysis of the literature, identify needed information to fill the gap, identify the best approaches to acquire the needed information, assimilate data and present data in writing or verbally.

Prerequisite: None
Course Director: Petr Leiman
Term offered: Fall, Annually
Hours per week: 2 hours, 15 weeks


Metabolism Studies (BCMB 6250)

This course will introduce students to research in metabolism and keep them abreast of the latest developments in this field and help them develop the skills for scientific presentations and participation in scientific seminars and conferences. Students are required to actively participate to the seminars by presenting at least once, and intervening to the discussion of the other presentations. Seminar presentations will count for 60% of the grade, and participation to the Q & A section of the other presentations will count for the remaining 40% of the grade. Grading will be S-U.

Prerequisite: None
Instructors: Blake Rasmussen, Elena Volpi
Term offered: Fall, Annually
Hours per week: 2


The Cell as a Machine (BCMB 6342)

This course covers provides a biophysical and engineering view of Cell Biology for beginning graduate students. The material is presented in an evolutionary context, beginning with an introduction to properties of pre-biotic molecular assemblies necessary to evolve living systems, then moves into how different and necessary components could come together to form a cell capable of regulating its internal environment, and concludes with the evolution of functionalities necessary to maintain cellular homeostasis and replicate daughter cells. Students will read a chapter in the “The Cell and Machine” textbook, listen to online recorded lectures for that chapter, and submit 1-2 questions about material that they want to learn more about. Class time is in person and involves discussing the questions with the students. Grading will be based on the performance of homework, attendance and participation, mid-term examination, and a final project.

Prerequisite: Student to be in the Cell Biology track within the BCMB program
Instructor: Michael Sheetz
Term offered: Fall
Year offered: Fall, Annually
Hours per week: 3, 12 Week Course


Biological Electron Microscopy (BCMB 6351)

The purpose of this course is for the student to develop an understanding of the principles of electron microscopy as applied to the study of biological macromolecules and tissues. Knowledge of these principles will form a foundation for gaining practical experience and training in biological electron microscopy.

Prerequisite: None
Instructor: Michael Sherman
Term offered: Fall, Annually
Hours per week- 2 classes week, 3 hours, 16 week


CELL Course Descriptions


Imaging in Biology (CELL 6207)

This is a 16 week course consisting of 3 modules that will encompass the basic principles of imaging. This course is taught from a syllabus that will be available on the first day of the class. A letter grade (A-F) will be given. The final grade in this course will be determined from class participation, student presentations and written exam.

The first module is comprised of the principles of imaging, which will cover:

— The basic properties of electromagnetic waves
— Laser/non-laser radiation
— Interaction of light with molecules, cells and tissues
— Fundamentals of spectroscopy and imaging
— Laboratory demonstrations and paper discussions

The second module will cover fluorescence microscopy from both the theoretical and practical points of view. There will be a series of lectures as well as practical applications including:

— Image processing
— Light microscopy (phase and DIC)
— Confocal and multiphoton laser scanning microscopy.

The last module of this course will cover single molecule detection and manipulation, including atomic force microscopy. In addition to lectures, this segment will also consist of demonstrations and group discussions.

2 credits
Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: Fall
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 2 - 4


CTPS Course Descriptions


Mentored Research for Postdoctoral Scholars (CTPS 6001)

No classroom attendance required. Research report due online at end of term.

This course consists of the training the postdoctoral scholar’s supervisor provides regularly in the laboratory and, thus, requires no class attendance. When research prevents a postdoc from leaving the lab bench, he or she may register only for Mentored Research. This course is designed to fine-tune postdocs' basic research skills in the laboratory or other location where the research takes place. The course consists of research in keeping with the postdoc's field, and overseen by the mentor.
*Enrollment limited to Postdoctoral Fellows

Credit Hours/Semester: Limited to 3.0


Research Seminar (CTPS 6101)

Seminar attendance, as required by mentor. Personal verification of attendance due at end of term.

This course is designed for postdocs to observe and learn to develop and present seminars about their research. After completing the course, students should be able to discuss their research with scientists in a way that helps advance the project; develop a presentation that concisely presents the research; develop learning objectives that the audience will receive from the presentation; demonstrate the ability to engage the audience in the research project; and observe and objectively assess and discuss another scientist's research.
*Enrollment limited to Postdoctoral Fellows

Credit Hours/Semester: 1.0


Journal Club (CTPS 6102)

Journal club attendance, as required by mentor. Personal verification of attendance due at end of term.

This course is designed for postdocs to learn to critically read and evaluate scientific journal articles and discuss them with colleagues; to lead discussions about published research developments, and to plan discussions for journal club meetings.

*Enrollment limited to Postdoctoral Fellows
Credit Hours/Semester: 1.0


Career Planning (Individual Development Plan) (CTPS 6103)

No classroom attendance required.

This course is comprised of writing your own Individual Development Plan (IDP) and discussing it with your mentor during the semester of registration. You must write your IDP, discuss it with at least one faculty mentor, and send a copy of the signed IDP and your CV to the Postdoctoral Affairs Office. There is no class to attend.
*Enrollment limited to Postdoctoral Fellows

Credit Hours/Semester: 1.0


Effective Presentation Skills (CTPS 6111)

This course is designed to prepare postdoctoral scholars and advanced graduate students with basic tools to design and deliver effective presentations using sound principles of public speaking. It will also help them learn to control nervousness when speaking before a group.

Credit Hours/Semester: 1.0


Translational Research Management 1: Team Building and Meeting Management (CTPS 6115)

This course is designed to prepare postdocs and advanced graduate students with the basic tools to develop their management skills for leading translational research projects.  With completion of this course, the participant will be able to: diagnose team effectiveness and dynamics; understand the role of norms, roles, goals, and team procedures, and to apply techniques to develop such; plan and facilitate both traditional and virtual meetings in a highly professional manner; use facilitation tools and techniques to develop and lead teams; follow established models of teams and groups, and apply the latest practices (cross functional teams, new product teams) to translational team efforts.

Credit Hours/Semester: 1.0


Effective Lab and Resource Management (CTPS 6121)

This course is designed to prepare postdocs and advanced graduate students with the basic tools to develop and lead a laboratory in academia or industry, manage resources and personnel effectively, and evaluate funding and technology transfer options. 

Credit Hours/Semester: 1.0


Undergraduate Teaching – Observation (CTPS 6125)

This 2-phase course is designed to prepare postdoctoral scholars to teach science courses in the college setting, under the guidance of a faculty mentor at a local undergraduate college or school. The first phase is for observing several faculty members with different teaching methodologies. The second phase is the classroom teaching segment.

*Enrollment limited to Postdoctoral Fellows
Credit Hours/Semester: 1.0


Application for Funding (CTPS 6131)

This course is designed to provide postdoctoral scientists with experience in preparing and submitting an application for funding. Participants will spend time with their mentors: 1) identifying and selecting a funding opportunity; 2) determining the application submission date; 3) planning the application; 4) writing and completing the application; 5) submitting the application; and 6) completing a self-evaluation.

Credit Hours/Semester: 1.0  *Enrollment limited to Postdoctoral Fellows


Conference Presentation (CTPS 6134)

Conference presentations are used to communicate research findings to the scientific community. The feedback received during an oral presentation or poster session can be used to refine experiments and prepare data for publication in a peer reviewed journal. This course is designed to provide postdoctoral scientists with experience in preparing and delivering a presentation at a local, national, or international scientific meeting and performing critical reflection of feedback received in a collegiate atmosphere. This course is offered on a Satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. Satisfactory can be achieved by submitting a verification form describing the activity. Credit will not be given for future dated experience.


Resilient Scientist Training: Thriving in a High-Pressure Work Environment (Course ID:1); virtual, asynchronous and synchronous activities (CTPS 6196)

This course will highlight strategies needed to navigate the challenges and stressors faced daily at work in the biomedical research environment and in life. Through a series of webinars, small group discussions and workshops, students will learn how to develop the resilience needed to navigate challenging situations. The material discussed will be helpful to individuals starting out in any new position or mentoring others.


Microbiology & Immunology/Pathology Seminar (CTPS 6196; Course ID:2)

This course is designed for postdocs to practice their conference-length and/or chalk-talk presentations while enhancing their science communication skills by learning methods to increase the impact of their talks, engage an audience in their research project, and effectively converse with colleagues during question-and-answer sessions. Additionally, postdocs will have the chance to receive constructive feedback from their peers and faculty mentors to prepare them for an upcoming conference or career talk. During the course, postdocs are expected to give at least one presentation and to engage with their peer’s presentations.


Interdisciplinary Course Description

 


Independent Study - (INTD 6088)

This 8-week interdisciplinary course provides graduate students the opportunity to expand their knowledge in preparation for their capstone, thesis or dissertation (e.g., learn a particular technique or a skill, read on a particular subject, etc.). The detailed or in-depth study would be in a specific topic area as agreed upon by the student and supervising faculty member. A written report at the end of the block is required, summarizing what has been learned. Overall course grade is based on meeting the objectives set forth for the course, and the requirements for the report.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 3-6
Instructor: Jupiter

 


Capstone (INTD 6094)

This interdisciplinary course is for students pursuing a Master’s degree and who are not doing a thesis or dissertation but instead are carrying out a project or capstone. The project/capstone consists of any of the following activities: i) Writing a review paper on a topic that the student will select together with a mentor and/or a committee; ii) Writing a short research paper on a topic that the student will select together with a mentor and/or a committee; iii) Hands-on activity that would result in generating/optimizing a protocol or establishing an assay; iv) Computational exercise around a well-defined scientific project that includes bioinformatics or data analysis; v) Internship in industry with written report. Grades are based on a satisfactory or unsatisfactory performance.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 3-6
Instructor: Jupiter

 


Research (INTD 6097)

This interdisciplinary course varies in credit according to the work performed. It is intended for formal research on thesis or dissertation project under the direction of a supervising professor directed toward the Doctor of Philosophy or Master of Science degree programs. This interdisciplinary course is designed to introduce the student to the techniques and philosophy of scientific research and to guide the development of a research problem in the major area of concentration. At the end of the registered term, students are required to write a one-page description of their research work. Grade is satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U).

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 1-9
Instructor: Jupiter

 


INTD Communicating Science (INTD 6102)

Syllabus

This course is designed to help scientists become better communicators who are comfortable using the written word, oral presentations and images to tell the story of science to a lay audience. It is also designed to promote skills in peer to peer communication and evaluation. It is offered for all students and trainees (graduate, postdoctoral, PhD or MD) from any program or discipline (with permission of course director). The format will include a mixture of lectures, journalistic writing assignments, presentations, and small group workshops where students will help critique and edit their classmates' work. Grades will be based on preparation, professionalism, participation in workshops and homework assignments.

Prerequisites: Permission of course director
Terms offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture .5/Discussion 1
Instructor: Toliver-Kinsky

 


Animal Models of Human Diseases (INTD 6220)

This 8-week course will provide an overview of the use of animal models in biomedical research. Initial sessions will discuss the scientific, technological, and ethical use of animals in disease research. The course will discuss the requirements of NIH Vertebrate Animals section of research proposals. The students will visit the animal facilities and become aware of all the components that make animal experimentation possible and sit on an IACUC discussion of protocols. The lectures will be followed by discussions on selected papers in diseases that utilize animal models to address molecular and cellular mechanisms in pathogenesis and host defense. Each student is assigned one or more research papers to present. All students are expected to read assigned background materials and research papers in advance to actively engage in the discussions. Students will evaluate the approach, usefulness, and validity of each model discussed in the selected papers. Students are expected to write and submit an IACUC protocol, which will be critically reviewed by the course directors and randomly assigned for the same purpose to members of the class. Materials will be presented by lecture and discussion. Grades will be based on performance on two written assignments, journal discussion(s), one in class take-home exam, class attendance, and participation in the class discussions.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 2; Conference/Discussion 1.5
Instructor: Dann Grice, Travi

 


Biomedical Informatics: Applied Investigation and Analysis in Health Outcomes Research (INTD 6301)

This course provides an overview of topics, concepts, theories, and methods that form the foundations of medical informatics. This course focuses on integrating public and private EMR sharing platform that allows access to the network of more than 200 million patients worldwide, with roughly 38 billion clinical facts for conducting translational and clinical research. Lectures cover concepts such as data coding systems, data harmonization, data compliance/privacy regulations, basic epidemiology and statistics, patient-centricity (i.e., a cohort), and real-world evidence strategy and interpretation. In addition, the course emphasizes the importance of cohort selection, the development of retrospective cohort studies, and real-world medical record data utilizations. In addition to theoretical classes, laboratories use TriNetX platform access to allow students to implement and practice methods covered in the lectures recreating population studies and clinical trial protocols. This course aims to provide theoretical and practical experience in analyzing and interpreting real-world epidemiological data. The overall student performance is calculated based on the final presentation, quizzes on assigned readings, practical assignment completion, and participation in final project discussion.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Golovko, Khanipov


Experimental Pathology Course Descriptions

 


Research in Pathology (PATH 6097)

This course varies in credit according to the work performed. The student concentrates on a problem of his or her own choosing with faculty advisor.

Grading is S/U (satisfactory/unsatisfactory)
Prerequisite: None
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Instructor: McBride


Thesis (PATH 6098)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing a Master of Science or Master of Arts degree to enroll in this course. This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the thesis for the Master of Science or Master of Arts degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student’s level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student’s supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Dissertation (PATH 6099)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing the Doctor of Philosophy degree to enroll in this course. This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the dissertation for the Doctor of Philosophy degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student's supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Biology of Arthropod Disease Vectors (PATH 6112)

The goal of this course is to introduce students to arthropods that are vectors for a wide variety of infectious agents that cause human diseases. The unique biology of hematophagous arthropods that has evolved to facilitate the coexistence between the vectors, pathogens, and the vertebrate host will be illustrated in both lectures and practical sessions. The curriculum will build upon a general introduction to arthropods. Then, using specific examples, the processes of infection, development, and transmission of pathogens will be discussed. This will include vector behaviors involved in location of the host, physiological adaptations to facilitate blood feeding and digestion, and factors that influence the vector-pathogen relationship. Options for controlling vector-borne diseases will be discussed from a historical perspective, with a consideration of how modern molecular approaches might be used in the future.

Prerequisites: None
Hours per week: 1
Terms offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Instructor: Bouyer/Vasilakis


Experimental Pathology Trainee Work in Progress (PATH 6115)

This course provides a forum for graduate student research in progress updates and is required for all graduate students in Experimental Pathology. The objective of this course is to enable students to gain experience by orally presenting their current research and future studies, and responding to questions from the audience. Attendance is required at the weekly Experimental Pathology seminars. Attendance at weekly Pathology Grand Rounds, other weekly clinical conferences, interdepartmental infectious disease conferences, and immunology or toxicology seminar offerings I voluntary, but strongly encourages. Grading is Standard (A-F) and grades will be determined based on submission of written evaluations (2nd year), attendance, and completion of one annual research presentation. (The written evaluations must be turned in to the Program Coordinator within 1 week of the seminar. Evaluations submitted after 1 week will automatically be reduced by one grade and those submitted 2 weeks late will not be accepted or receive a grade of F.) Attendance at 90% of seminars is required for year 2 trainees, and 80% for trainees in years 3-5. However, it is strongly recommended that graduate students attend all trainee seminar series, particularly those of their fellow students. Grades in the third year and beyond are based on attendance. Attendance records for the trainee workshop are maintained by the Program Coordinator.

Prerequisites: Consent of program director
Hours per week: Conference 1
Terms offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Instructor: McBride


Clinical Microbiology Practicum (PATH 6123)

This course is designed to provide graduate students with an opportunity to gain both understanding and practical, hands-on experience in the policies, procedures and regulatory/safety standards of the clinical microbiology laboratory, and its role in infectious disease diagnostics. It serves as an introduction to the field of clinical microbiology, for those students interested in pursuing this area as a career choice. The student will rotate through different sections of the clinical microbiology laboratory. Bench-level rotations will expose the student to laboratory sub-specialties including bacteriology, virology, serology, mycology, mycobacteriology and parasitology. The student will be given simulated specimens on which to perform bacterial identification and susceptibility testing under the guidance of microbiology technologists. Throughout the rotation, students will participate in weekly Microbiology Plate Rounds and are encouraged to attend the weekly Adult and Pediatric Infectious Disease Case Conferences.

Prerequisites: Consent of instructor
Hours per week: Conference or discussion 2
Lab, up to 30
Grading is based on a written and oral assignment. Final grade will be assigned as either Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U)
Terms offered I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Instructors: Williams-Bouyer/ Loeffelholz


Foundations of Virology (PATH 6140)

Discoveries and discoverers, inventors and inventions, developers and technologies — the historic bases for the state of virology research today and the larger context in which laboratory, field, and public health virology contribute to the prevention and control of viral diseases. I will use the tabular material and the 800 slide Powerpoint slide sets https://www.utmb.edu/ihii/virusimages/

to provide an overview of the history of medical virology, emphasizing as stated, "the discoverers and discoveries, the inventors and inventions, the developers and their technologies." In producing these materials I have accumulated quite a bit of information, enough to provide in lecture / discussion format a sense of the context of the discoveries, and in key instances lots of detail that everyone is sure to find exciting. 16 lectures will each cover an "era," starting with key events forming the base for the rise of microbiology in the 19th century, continuing with the discovery of the first viruses and the rise of the science in France, Germany and the United States in the early years of the 20th century, continuing with the discovery of most of the important human pathogens throughout the 20th century (and continuing today), and setting the stage for the molecular virology revolution that also continues.

Grading is S/U (satisfactory/unsatisfactory). Pass/fail will be determined by attendance and participation in class discussions.
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Instructor: TBD

Colloquium of Frontiers of Infectious Diseases and Tropical Medicine (PATH 6145)

Frontiers in Infectious Diseases is an Experimental Pathology course that uses the Infectious Diseases and Immunity for its didactics. The colloquium is organized and sponsored by the Center for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases (CBEID), the Center for Tropical Diseases (CTD), and the Departments of Microbiology & Immunology (M&I) and Pathology at UTMB. This colloquium was created to offer faculty, staff, and trainees the opportunity to hear about the latest research of recognized experts in the fields of infectious diseases, microbiology, and immunity. Invited speakers are almost always from academic institutions throughout the United States and occasionally from international institutions. The Colloquium offers a wide range of topics within the fields of infectious diseases, microbiology, and immunity, including epidemiology, vaccine development, pathogenesis, pathophysiology, molecular biology, cellular microbiology, etc. Students registered for this course will have the opportunity to meet the speaker in a separate small-group session called "meet the professor". This is a great opportunity to learn not only about the details of the speaker's research, but also about their motivations in science, their life experiences, and their advice as it relates to professional and academic advancement. Grading is S/U (satisfactory or unsatisfactory) and depends on attendance.

Specific requirements are the following: First year students will register for this course for the fall and spring semesters, and they must attend more than 80% of the seminars offered during those semesters
Second year students will register for this course for either the fall or the spring semester, and they must attend more than 80% of the seminars offered during the selected semester
Registered students must attend more than one third of the "meet the professor" post-seminar meetings
Terms offered: I,II
Year Offered: Annually
Instructor: McBride


Introduction to Vaccinology (PATH 6161)

Vaccines for the 21st Century is a five-week introductory course designed to provide the basic scientist with an understanding of vaccine development from conceptualization through development, testing and utilization. The course Objectives are to learn:

1. The history of the development of vaccines and their impact on society.
2. The identification of pathogens & diseases for which vaccines are needed.
3. The principles of the development, availability and use of vaccines.
4. The pathophysiologic approach to developing vaccine strategies.
5. The application of traditional and new technologies to vaccine development.
6. The importance of the regulatory process to vaccine development, including "proof of principle", pre-clinical and clinical testing.

The course will be taught in lecture format with a small number of expert lecturers. There will be assigned reading in preparation for each session. Reading materials will be provided. Each session will be 1 hour (total 15 contact hours). Course performance will be determined by take home midterm & final examinations (50% each).

Prerequisite: Consent of Instructor
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Instructors: Milligan/Barnett


Basic Human Pathobiology-Toxicology (PATH 6276)

The objective of this course is to introduce the principles of toxicology. This is achieved by presenting specific clinically-relevant examples of toxic injury and exploring the biochemical, cellular and pathogenetic mechanisms that underlie these examples. Mechanisms of toxin-induced cellular injury discussed could include injury by reactive oxygen and nitrogen species, xenobiotic adduction and metabolism, and receptor/signal disruption. Grading is based on contributions to class discussion (40%) and a final examination (60%).

Grading is Standard (A-F)
Hours per week: Lecture I, Conference I
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Instructors: Boor/Khan


Introduction to Competitive Grant Writing (PATH 6279)

This course will provide an introductory and interactive experience to competitive grant writing. Topics to be covered include understanding the review process, and planning, organizing, writing a successful hypothesis driven application. Students will be required to write a two year grant application, provide written critiques, and participate in a final mock study section review. Grading is Standard (A-F) and will be based on class participation (30%), written assignments (40%), and quality of the final application (40%).

Prerequisites: Consent of Instructor
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Instructor: Dr. Vasilakis


Tropical Diseases (PATH 6318)

This course is designed to provide graduate students with an overview of tropical diseases and related current research. The course is not designed to be comprehensive, but will sample representatives of major infectious tropical diseases. Emphasis is placed on the ecology, epidemiology and control of tropical diseases. The class meets two (2) times a week for 90 minutes; each session includes a 45 minute lecture by a faculty member, followed by the presentation of a pertinent paper and discussion questions. Students are expected to submit their selected reference and at least 5 discussion questions to the lecturer one week in advance.

Grading is Standard (A-F)
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Instructors: Dr. Melby, Dr. Travi


Basic Human Pathobiology (PATH 6386)

This 8-week course will provide a fundamental background for students who are interested in pursuing knowledge in infectious disease pathogenesis and histopathology. This course will include a series of lectures on bacterial and viral PATHogenesis and histopathology. Bacterial pathogens include the agents of tuberculosis, plague, rickettsioses/ehrlichioses, and anthrax. Viral pathogens include alphaviruses, herpes viruses, hepatitis viruses, viral hemorrhagic fever viruses, Zika, and Influenza. Introductory lectures in immunology will include cellular and humoral immmunity, cytokines and principles of immunopathology. Additional introductory lectures include animal models of infectious diseases and diagnostic principles of infectious diseases in the clinical microbiology laboratory (including molecular diagnostics). Each pathogen lecture will have a component of molecular pathogenesis followed by a discussion of its histopathology.

Prerequisites: None
Hours per week: 1.5
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Instructors: Dr. Olano


Functional Histology and Pathobiology (PATH 6436)

This 16-week course will provide a fundamental background for students who are interested in pursuing experimental PATHology. This course will include, but is not limited to, general PATHobiology, basic functional histology, and organ development of humans. Pathobiology topics will include cell injury/death, acute inflammation, immunopathology, neoplasia, coagulation, and genetic diseases. Functional histology will include the following organ systems: cardiovascular, respiratory, nervous, hematopoietic, gastrointestinal/hepatic, and urinary. For each system, normal functional histology and the main categories of diseases will be discussed (infectious, neoplastic, environmental, hemodynamic, etc.). Supplemental lectures on experimental techniques used in pathology research will also be included: histology/immunohistochemistry, electron microscopy, flow cytometry, and laser capture microdissection. Topics will be discussed as didactic lectures and use of glass slides/virtual imaging for demonstration of histology slides. Seven journal club sessions will take place during the course and will be related to the topics discussed during the course. Grading is Standard (A-F) and will be based on two mid-term exams and one final exam. Participation during journal clubs will also be graded. (Examinations: 20% + 20% + 20%; Journal Club: 20%; Attendance: 20%.

Prerequisites: Consent of instructor
Hours per week: Lecture 4
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Course Directors: Dr. Hawkins, Dr. Olano


Human Pathophysiology and Translational Medicine Course Descriptions


Clinical Encounters (HPTM 6071)

This course will consist of clinical encounter sessions with HPTM clinical faculty. Students will gain hands-on experience and mentorship in conducting T1 translational research projects in their specific area of scientific and clinical interest. The goals of the clinical encounter sessions are to continue the development of interprofessional communication skills between scientists (students) and physicians (clinical mentor), have the students gain a focused knowledge of current standards of diagnosis and treatment of a specific disease or injury, discuss the limitation of current methods of clinical care, and explore or identify potential areas for future translational research projects for the improvement of current standards of care. Clinical Encounter session activities will include: physician "shadowing" to observe patients afflicted with the disease or injury of interest and/or attending interdisciplinary clinical conference that discuss disease processes and/or patient care. The CE sessions will also allow time for l) student-clinical mentor planning sessions to discuss scheduling and goals for the CE course in the beginning of the course, and 2) time for the student to write 1·2 pages reflection essays on how the CR rotation enhanced their understanding of the specific disease or clinical problem as it relates to their translational research project. The final course grade is determined based on the criteria established between the mentor and student and reported on the Student Evaluation Report form.

Prerequisites: HPTM 6291, POTS l and HPTM 6292, POTS 2.
Terms offered: I, II, III
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 6


Internship Regulated Nonclinical Studies (HPTM 6072)

The ORNCS faculty/staff will offer practical training on development/use of study protocols, standard operating procedures, study-specific and facility documentation, equipment qualification, data/sample retention, and Quality Control/Quality Assurance (QC/QA). Trainees participating In this internship will shadow study directors, scientific/technical personnel, records management and archiving personnel, and quality assurance unit (QAU) personnel. Interns will gain an advanced understanding of the FDA Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) and Animal Rule regulations, Implementation and operation of quality management systems, and the design, execution, reporting and quality oversight of animal efficacy studies supporting licensure of vaccines and other medical countermeasures. Trainees participating In this Internship may also be able to attend the UTMIHDA¿¿sponsored training activity, ·Achieving Data Quality and Integrity In Maximum Containment Laboratories-, which Is held annually at the National Institutes of Health In Bethesda, MO, focusing on animal mode regulatory expectations under the FDA's Animal Rule. Grading (satisfactory/unsatisfactory) Is based on participation, attendance, and effective completion in assigned tasks.

Prerequisites: Consent of Instructor. Participation in Good Laboratory Practice training provided by the ORNcS-FDA-GLP Regulations In the Academic Setting.
Terms offered: I, II, III
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Practicum


Research (HPTM 6097)

Formal research directed toward the Doctor of Philosophy degree programs. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the student's research supervisor and will be assigned as satisfactory or unsatisfactory in a Mentor Report. Work is designed to introduce students to the techniques and philosophy of scientific research and to guide them in the development of a research problem in their major area of concentration. At the end of the registered term, students are required to write a one-page description of their research work.

This course is taken after a student has passed the qualifying exam. Each student may enroll in this course for a maximum of three terms before becoming a candidate.

Prerequisites: Approval of Program Advisor
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable


Thesis (HPTM 6098)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing a Master of Science or Master of Arts degree to enroll in this course. This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the thesis for the Master of Science or Master of Arts degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student’s level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student’s supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Dissertation (HPTM 6099)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing the Doctor of Philosophy degree to enroll in this course. This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the dissertation for the Doctor of Philosophy degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student's supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Translational Research Seminar Series for HPTM Graduate Students (HPTM 6109)

This seminar series PROVIDES OPPORTUNITIES FOR Human Pathophysiology and Translational Medicine (HPTM) graduate and Translational Research Track (TRT) medical students to present their research to their peers and interested faculty in a scholastic setting, maintain contact with TRT students and gain an understanding of the translational insights of the medical students doing their clinical rotations, and interface with experienced clinicians and scientific competencies. Grading will be based on: seminar and post-seminar discussion attendance (70%), professionalism (5%), career building (10%) and the annual presentation of a student research update seminar (15%). Final grades will be calculated based on the standard A-F scale.

Prerequisites: Student must be entering second year in the HPTM program to enroll
Terms offered: I, II
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Discussion 1; Seminar 1


Practice of Translational Science – Modules I, II, III and IV (HPTM 6291, 6292, 6293, 6113)

6291 MODULE I: PRACTICE OF TRANSLATIONAL SCIENCE (2 Credits)

Students in this course will participate in active, student-directed cooperative learning exercises in small groups to explore foundational concepts that address basic competencies of translational scientists. Students will be concurrently enrolled with medical students in Gross Anatomy and Radiology course (HPTM 6405). Topics explored during the POTS 1 courses will include scientific knowledge of human physiology and pathology as well as traditional basic sciences such as cell biology, molecular biology, genetics, etc. Concepts will be linked to Problem Based Learning cases studies in the GAR course (HTPM 6405). Students will also spend significant time in groups exploring and applying concepts related to other core competencies of translational scientists, such as teaching, professionalism, communication, and management. Grades will be based on weekly quizzes (20%), final written exam (20%), small group participation and problem-solving (20%), and other (oral presentation, reflective writing, peer assessment, learning portfolio) (40%).

Prerequisites: Students must be enrolled in the HPTM program. HPTM 6405 must be taken concurrently.
Terms offered: I
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Conference/Discussion 4

6292 MODULE II: PRACTICE OF TRANSLATIONAL SCIENCE (2 Credits)

Students in this course will participate in active, student-directed cooperative learning exercises in small groups to explore foundational concepts that address basic competencies of translational scientists. This course will emphasize core principles in physiology incorporating biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics, etc. Grades will be based on weekly quizzes (20%), final written exam (20%), participation in small group activities (20%), and other ( (oral presentation, reflective writing, peer assessment, learning portfolio) (40%).

Prerequisites: Students must be enrolled in the HPTM program. HPTM 6291 and HPTM 6405. HPTM 6332 must be taken concurrently.
Terms offered: I
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Conference/Discussion 4

6293 MODULE 3: PRACTICE OF TRANSLATIONAL SCIENCE (2 Credits)

Students in this course will participate in active, student-directed cooperative learning exercises in small groups to explore foundational concepts that address basic competencies of translational scientists. This course will emphasize core principles in physiology and pathology incorporating cell injury and adaptation, inflammation, immunologic diseases, microbiology, environmental and genetic diseases. Grades will be based on weekly quizzes (20%), final written exam (20%), participation in small group activities (20%), and other (oral presentation, reflective writing, peer assessment, learning portfolio) (40%).

Prerequisites: Students must be enrolled in the HPTM program. HPTM 6405, HPTM 6291, HPTM 6332, HPTM 6292
Terms offered: II
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Conference/Discussion 4

HPTM 6113 MODULE 4: PRACTICE OF TRANSLATIONAL SCIENCE IV (2 Credits)

This eight-week course is the fourth module of the Practice of Translational Science course, the foundational, discipline-specific course of the HPTM curriculum. The students will be engaged in a longitudinal, individual grant writing experience that began in POTS Ill. POTS IV is a continuation of the grant exercise; however, there will be greater focus on the Experimental Methods and Approaches in this course. In general, the classes will be designed to be experiential with a "how to" focus. Students will meet in the instructors' labs and be immersed in datasets, or experimental samples for assay analyses. Grades will be based on: final written grant and competency assessment. Competency assessment includes work exercises, proposal papers, group projects, oral presentations, quizzes, and post-class assignments.

Prerequisites: Students must be enrolled in the HPTM program. HPTM 6291, POTS 1; HPTM 6292, POTS 2; HPTM 6293, POTS 3
Terms offered: II
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 2


Introduction to Big Data Visual Analytics (HPTM 6284)

The accelerated growth and complexity of biomedical data far exceeds our cognitive abilities to exploit it for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases. A promising approach to bridge this gap is through the emerging field of visual analytics defined as the “science of analytical reasoning facilitated by interactive visual interfaces.” This course provides the theoretical foundations and practical methods related to visual analytics focused towards the analysis and comprehension of large and complex biomedical datasets (e.g., genomic data, and electronic health records). The theoretical foundations will focus on the principles related to cognition, computation and graphic design. The practical methods will focus on hands-on experience in using commercial (Tableau and Pajek) and a research prototype (MODIM) requiring no programming. Through a required project, students will have the opportunity to integrate their theoretical and practical knowledge of big data visual analytics to analyze, comprehend and present complex patterns in a large biomedical dataset. Grading scale will be A-F.

Prerequisites: Biostatistics – BBSC 6222 or Interprofessional Translational Research Design – HPTM 6295, or with the permission of the instructor
Terms offered: Summer, 2nd Block
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Conference/Discussion 4


Interprofessional Translational Research Design Course (HPTM 6295)

The Interprofessional Translational Research Design (IPTRD) course will team HPTM students with UTMB Medical Students in the Translational Research Track in identifying a translational problem and designing translational research projects. The course will focus development of key research design and collaborative competencies. Major emphasis will be on biostatistics and research design, team building, professional identify development, inter-professional communication and oral presentation skills. The course will meet for three, two hour sessions weekly. Teaching methodology will use active learning modalities such as guided inquiry, moderated discussion, workshop sessions and seminar presentations. Course grades will be based on small group discussions participation, written critiques of research articles, and research proposal developed as an interprofessional pair.

Prerequisites: Currently enrolled in the HPTM program having satisfied the requirements of HPTM 6291, 6292, HPTM 6293 and HPTM 6294 or a UTMB Medical School Student enrolled I the Translational Research Track
Terms offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 6


Foundations of Biomedical Informatics (HPTM 6309)

This course provides an overview of topics, concepts, theories and methods that form the foundations of medical Information sciences. It gives students the fundamental knowledge and skills to pursue further study In medial Informatics. It presents a general framework for health Information science as the construction and use of symbolic,. mathematical, and computational models for solving problems throughout the range of biomedical science, from genetics to clinical care to public health. It covers concepts, theories and methods that deal with how biomedical Information Is acquired, discovered, represented, managed, organized, communicated, retrieved, and processed. It also provides an overview of the primary research and application areas In health Information science. This course also provides an overview of theories and methods that are broadly applicable to all health informaticians. It gives students the theoretical and methodological background needed to pursue studies in health Informatics. Grades will be determined based on homework assignments, final exam, class anticipation, and attendance.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I
Years offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3


Gross Anatomy and Radiology (HPTM 6405)

In this course, graduate students in the HPTM curriculum will participate in problem based learning, anatomy lab, and lectures together with selected medical students in the Integrated Medical course of the same name. This inter-professional learning opportunity will allow medical and graduate students to learn with, from and about each other with the goal of instilling collaborative competencies for translational research. Grades will be based on participation in small group problem based learning sessions (45%), midterm and final written exams (25%), mid term and final laboratory practical exams (22%), and self study cross sectional anatomy tutorial (8%).

Prerequisites: Enrollment in HPTM
Terms offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 6-8; Lecture 4; Conference/Discussion 3


Pathobiology and Host Defense for HPTM Students (HPTM 6406)

In this course, graduate students in the HPTM curriculum will participate in problem-based learning ((PBL) sessions, pathology lab session and lectures together with selected medical students in the integrated Medical Curriculum course of the same name. PBL and lab sessions involve case-based studies of various diseases. Major basic science topics include general pathology, histopathology, basic immunology and microbiology. The inter-professional learning opportunity will allow medical students and graduate students to learn with, from and about each other with the goal of instilling collaborative competencies for translational research. The course will be complemented by the HPTM course Practice of Translational Science Module 3. Grades will be based on mid-term exam, final exam, lab exam, PBL evaluation, PBL graded quizzes and graded weekly quizzes. Assessment modalities for HPTM students are tailored specific for the program-specific objectives, hence the use of essay examinations in addition to course development multiple choice assessments.

Prerequisites: HPTM 6405, HPTM 6291, HPTM 6332, HPTM 6292. Students must be enrolled in the HPTM program
Terms offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 5; Discussion 6; Laboratory 2


MD/PHD Course Descriptions


MD/PhD Lab Rotation (MDPH 6001)

The objectives of this course are to provide students an opportunity to become familiar with the faculty and their research efforts in the graduate school by participating in the activities of the lab and by becoming acquainted with the lab staff and the goals of the research project. Letter grades will be determined by the instructor and will be based on lab performance. Course taken during the summers prior to year 1, 2, and 3 (optional).

Term offered: Summer
Year offered: Annually
Prerequisites: Enrolled as a student in the MD-PhD program and not yet enrolled in a specific graduate program
Course Instructor: Michael Laposata


Current Topics in Pathobiology and Host Defense (MDPH 6102)

This course is designed to supplement the medical school pathobiology and host defense block. Students will meet weekly to review current literature related to disease pathogenesis covered in the medical school. Students will be graded (letter grades) on class performance and attendance. Course taken in spring term of year 1.

Term offered: Spring
Year offered: Annually
Prerequisites: Prior or concurrent enrollment in Pathobiology (IMC 1210)
Course Instructor: Michael Laposata


MD/PhD Seminar (MDPH 6101)

The seminar program focuses on research activities in various graduate programs and other topics of interest to MD-PhD students. Grading is determined on a pass (satisfactory)/fail basis, based on participation/attendance. Course taken during the fall and spring semesters for the duration of the program.

Terms offered: Fall; Spring
Year offered: Annually
Prerequisites: Enrolled as a student in the MD-PhD program
Course instructor: Michael Laposata


Current Topics in Neuroscience and Human Behavior (MDPH 6202)

This course is designed to supplement the medical school neuroscience course. Students will meet weekly to review current literature related to neuroscience covered in the medical school. Students will be graded (letter grades) based on class performance and attendance. Course taken in spring term of year 1.

Term offered: Spring
Year offered: Annually
Prerequisites: Prior or concurrent enrollment in Neuroscience and Human Behavior (IMC 1220)
Course Instructor: Michael Laposata


Current Topics in Molecules, Cells and Tissues (MDPH 6203)

This course is designed to supplement the medical school molecules, cells, and tissues block. Students will meet weekly to review current literature related to the molecular mechanisms of diseases covered in the medical school. Students will be graded (letter grades) on class performance and attendance. Course taken in fall term of year 1.

Term offered: Fall
Year offered: Annually
Prerequisites: Prior or concurrent enrollment in Molecules, Cells and Tissues (IMC 1120)
Course Instructor: Michael Laposata


Microbiology & Immunology Course Descriptions


International Internships in Vaccinology (MICR 6070)

The Sealy Center for Vaccine Development (SCVD), in conjunction with the World Health Organization (WHO) headquarters, sponsors an annual internship program. The traveling internship program will form the basis for this course. Students participating in this course will undertake an internship at the World Health Organization Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. Each student will be paired up with a mentor at WHO and a UTMB SCVD member to work on a defined project related to public health and vaccines for a period of 3 months (typically from early Spring to Fall of each year, with specific time-frames to be determined for each internship). Each internship project will involve significant contribution to a team tasked with developing a report on vaccines and a specific infectious disease for the WHO. Grading (satisfactory/unsatisfactory) will be based on participation, attendance, completion of assigned task(s), evaluations/feedback received from WHO and UTMB mentor(s), and submission of a final report to the SCVD by the student summarizing their internship experience and outcomes.

Prerequisites: Students must have completed all required graduate program coursework and entered candidacy prior to commencing the internship. Written approval from the mentor is also required.
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable


Field Experience in OneHealth and Outbreak Response (MICR 6071)

OneHealth is defined as the collaborative effort of multiple disciplines -working locally, nationally, and globally -to attain optimal health for people, animals, and our environment. Implementing this approach requires braking down professional silos and engaging medical and veterinary professionals, laboratory scientists, the public health community, policymakers, and experts from the biomedical, social. and environmental sciences. This 4 week course will take a OneHealth approach to the problem of emerging infectious diseases, from the veterinary, public health, laboratory, and clinical points of view. Using innovative and highly inter-professional learning approaches and guided by experts in the field, students will travel between Texas A&M University, UT Rio Grande Valley, and UTMB to observe regional differences in the social. economic, cultural, and environmental determinants of population health. Topics that will be addressed include animal/veterinary health, vector dynamics, sample collection and processing, molecular diagnostics, countermeasure development, biocontainment/biosecurity, clinical management of potential infectious threats, communication skills, interprofessional teamwork, and public health system response. Students must complete an application process and undergo selection to participate in this course. Grading (satisfactory/unsatisfactory) will be based on attendance and participation in assigned activities at each field site, completion of assigned task(s), evaluations/feedback from the course mentors, and submission of a final report to the course committee by the student.

Prerequisites: Must have completed all required graduate coursework and have passed the qualifying exam. Written approval from the student’s dissertation mentor is also required.
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable


Research (MICR 6097)

Formal research directed toward Masters Doctor of Philosophy degree programs. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the student's research supervisor and will be assigned as satisfactory or unsatisfactory.

Prerequisites: Admission to the microbiology and immunology program.
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 3-27


Thesis (MICR 6098)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing a Master of Science or Master of Arts degree to enroll in this course. This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the thesis for the Master of Science or Master of Arts degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student’s level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student’s supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Dissertation (MICR 6099)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing the Doctor of Philosophy degree to enroll in this course.  This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the dissertation for the Doctor of Philosophy degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student's supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Training in Infectious Disease Outbreak Response (MICR 6140)

This 3-day course in infectious diseases provides the students with the opportunity to test their own knowledge in solving an outbreak scenario, and to learn how institutions such as the Centers for Disease Control approach infectious disease outbreaks. In this three-day course students will be confronted and led through a fictive outbreak simulation. Using innovative and highly inter-professional learning approaches and guided by experts in the field, students will understand the steps required in an outbreak response; solve the etiology of the outbreak agent case by drawing on their previously acquired knowledge and skills in virology, immunology, bacteriology, and epidemiology; and learn how to interact with the public. Topics that will be included are sample collection and processing, diagnostic tool and immuno reagent development, countermeasure development, and public outreach. Grades will be satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U) based on participation. A grade of satisfactory will depend on: a) attendance of the student to all scheduled sessions and discussions; b) a short report during the course; and c) writing one -page reflective paper that will serve as self-evaluation.

Prerequisites: Must have taken MICR 6403 – General Virology, MICR 6315 – Pathogenic Bacteriology, or MICR 6408 – Advanced Immunology.
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 6, Conference 18


Student Research Update Seminar (MICR 6142)

Weekly student research update seminars for Microbiology and Immunology graduate students to present their current work. Students and faculty are invited and give the presenting student an opportunity for helpful critique and suggestions regarding their thesis project. A summary report is provided to the presenter and mentor(s) with feedback received from all attendants.

Prerequisites: Student must have declared Microbiology & Immunology as their graduate program
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 1- Seminar
Detailed Course Information (PDF)


Internship in Vaccinology (MICR 6143)

The Sealy Center for Vaccine Development (SCVD), in conjunction with the World Health Organization(WHO) headquarters, sponsors an annual Internship program. The proposed course will be associated with a UTMB-based Internship program that will involve preparation of a report by the student on a specific infectious diseases and vaccines topic, intended for use as a briefing document by a WHO expert committee. The student will work as part of a small group (2-3 students) under the supervision of a SCVD member. The internship will be conducted over a 3 month period, concurrent with the trainee's regular educational and research activities. Grading will be based on participation, attendance, effective performance of assigned tasks, evaluations/feedback received from mentors, and submission of a final report to the SCVD by the intern summarizing their internship experience and outcomes. Prerequisite: Consent to be enrolled required.

Prerequisites: For graduate students, successful applicants must have completed all required BBSC and/or program coursework prior to commencing the internship. Written approval from the mentor is also required.
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 2 - Conference or Discussion


Current Topics in Infectious Diseases and Immunity (MICR 6195)

Seminar course intended to familiarize students with current research in the areas of infectious diseases and immunology. Students attend weekly seminars in the Infectious Diseases and Immunity Colloquium. Students may substitute some seminars in the series with presentations from the monthly Immunology Research in Progress series. Students are required to enroll during the first two years in the program. Each student will be assigned a session per term to lead class by discussing an assigned topic relevant to a journal club article. Students will also participate in small group discussions and prepare essays. Grading will be based on attendance (30%), preparation and discussion leadership (20%), and reflective essays or review essay (50%).

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 1 - Conference or Discussion


Scientific Writing & Grant Proposal Preparation (MICR 6255)

This course introduces the principles of scientific writing and grant proposal preparation in the new NIH format. The goal of this course is to familiarize students with the individual parts of an NIH-style grant application, to help students in acquiring scientific writing skills, and to prepare students for the qualifying exam in the Microbiology & Immunology graduate program. It consists of weekly lectures and small-group sessions during which experienced faculty mentors present didactic instruction on planning, organizing, and writing a hypothesis-driven grant application. Students will also work individually and in small groups on an original grant proposal. Students write a grant proposal with precise deadlines for submission of individual parts. Grading will be based on the assignments (30%), the final grant application (50%), and an oral defense of the proposal (20%).

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 2


Pathogenic Bacteriology (MICR 6315)

The objective of this course is to introduce students to concepts of research on bacterial pathogens. Pathogens infecting man will be studied, with emphasis given to their pathogenic mechanisms, induction of immunity, and physiochemical characteristics. The course will consist of lectures and discussions. Grading based on written examinations.

Prerequisites: BBSC first year curriculum
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 2; Conference or discussion 1


General Virology (MICR 6403)

Principles and concepts of animal virology will be presented, but the majority of the course will be devoted to the study of viruses of medical importance. Emphasis will be placed upon the chemical and physical characteristics of viruses, viral interaction with the immune system, pathogenesis of viral infections, and the mechanisms of replication of viruses. The course consists of lectures and discussion periods. Grades will be based on performance on written examinations.

Prerequisites: BBSC First Year Curriculum
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3; Conference 1
Syllabus


Advanced Immunology (MICR 6408)

An in-depth study of the immune response and related events with emphasis on the mechanism of cellular and humoral immunity. Some of the topics to be covered include antibody structure and function, antigen-antibody reactions, cells involved in the immune response, antibody formation, cellular immunity, mediators, tolerance, and immunogenetics. Material will be presented in lectures and assigned readings of texts, reviews, and research articles. Grading will be based on written examinations and class participation.

Prerequisites: BBSC First Year Curriculum
Conference or discussion 1
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Course Coordinators: Soong/Milligan


Masters of Medical Science Course Descriptions


Research (MMSC 6097)**

This course initiates the formal research training directed toward a Masters of Medical Science degree. During this course, the student will select a supervisory committee, submit full written proposal for approval, orally defend the approved written proposal, and request admission to candidacy. Grading is based on the student's level of performance as satisfactory, needs improvement, or unsatisfactory.

Credits: 3-10
Course grades: Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory (S/U)
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually


Thesis (MMSC 6098)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing a Master of Science or Master of Arts degree to enroll in this course. This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the thesis for the Master of Science or Master of Arts degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student’s level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student’s supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Seminar (MMSC 6195)

This course is to expose students to a wide range of current biomedical research topics. All Masters of Medical Science students must register for seminar courses every term offered irrespective of status in program. Students may attend a seminar on campus or specific specialty-specific topics at national meetings to fulfill this requirement.

The course spans across two consecutive terms, Fall and Spring. A grade of "G" (longitudinal} will be assigned at the end of the Fall term. The final course grade will be assigned at the end of the Spring term.

Students are required to attend a total 16 seminars over the two terms with a total of 8 completed for each term and complete an online evaluation for each seminar. Grading will be Satisfactory(S)/Unsatisfactory (U) or, Needs Improvement (N) based on attendance.


Neuroscience Graduate Program Course Descriptions

Information About the Course of Study

  • A. Course Requirements

    Students in the Neuroscience Graduate Program will take the integrated first-year Basic Biomedical Sciences Curriculum (BBSC). In addition, a series of required and elective courses specific to the NGP are taken in the first and subsequent years. These include the courses Integrative Neuroscience (NEUR 6403), Teaching in Neuroscience (NEUR 6220) and Neuronal Excitability (NEUR 6207). Neuroscience students must take any combination of available electives for a minimum of 6 credit hours. Students are required to take a minimum of 9 credit-hours per term (The second number in each 4-number course identification code represents the credit hours for the course). Course evaluations by students are required for all didactic courses in the program. Grades will not be released for any course until all evaluations are received.

  • B. Minimal Performance Criteria
    Students in the Neuroscience Graduate Program should maintain a grade of B or higher in all required courses of the program. Students who fail to do so will be required to make up the deficiency by a variety of means, including but not limited to, retaking examinations, taking a readings or special topics course, or repeating the course the next time it is offered. The remedial action to be utilized will be determined by the Advisory Committee and Program Director. Rules and requirements regarding probation and dismissal from the graduate school may be found in section 4.57 of the Academic Policies of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.
  • C. Elective Courses
    1. Students may choose elective courses to strengthen special areas of interest or weakness, or to provide background for research skills. A minimum of 6 credit hours of elective courses is required in any combination. Students may take additional hours if appropriate.

    2. The elective courses available include any of the courses shown on the chart. Courses offered by other graduate programs may be taken in lieu of the electives listed, but approval of the Program Director is required for the substitution.
  • D. Laboratory Rotations
    1. New students will meet with the NGP Program Director and Advisory Committee, who will introduce them to the research activities of our Program.

    2. Each student will rotate through at least 2 laboratories of his/her choice during the first (BBSC) year, beginning with the fall term. Registration is for BBSC 6042 Lab Rotations. NGP students then register for lab rotation in the neuroscience program (NEUR 6042) in the lab they chose to join by the end of the BBSC year and continue to register for NEUR 6042 each term until they pass the written qualifying examination and enter into "Research". Credit hours depend on the time commitment of the student and faculty member but may not be for less than 3 credit hours (9 contact hours per week) per term.
  • E. Seminars
    Each student is required to register for Seminar each term for the duration of his/her tenure in the graduate school. All students registered for the NGP seminar course (NEUR 6195) must attend at least 80% of fourteen Program-recommended seminars in each term (approximately one seminar per week). Regular and student seminars count toward satisfying the 14-seminar requirement. "Regular" seminars are those presented by non-students (local or visiting faculty, scientists, etc.). "Student" seminars are those presented by any NGP student and include conventional seminars or progress reports as well as defenses of dissertation proposals and dissertations.

    In addition to the seminar attendance requirements, each student must write a brief statement about the seminar, summarizing in the style of NIH reviews (1) Overall impact of the work described in the seminar, and (2) Innovation. Students are graded S/U for the written summary (Form E in our Program Policies). Summaries will be reviewed/graded by the Director of the NGP seminar course (NEUR 6195).

    Each student will also present one seminar each year of the neuroscience program, typically in the summer term, including the dissertation proposal, the dissertation defense, and other annual presentations. The Advisory Committee is responsible for running the seminar program for students. Two successful seminar series, the Mitchell Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases Seminars and the Neuroscience & Cell Biology Departmental Seminars are offered, which provide our students with exciting opportunities to interact with external speakers and UTMB faculty and enjoy important presentations by students and postdoctoral fellows as well.

    In addition to regular seminars, we are fortunate to be able to offer the James E. Beall II Memorial Lecture, which is co-sponsored by the Neuroscience Graduate Program and the Department of Neuroscience & Cell Biology and is given annually by distinguished investigators in the neurosciences.

Laboratory Rotations (NEUR 6042)

The objectives of this required course are to provide students an opportunity to become familiar with the faculty and their research efforts in the Neuroscience Program by participating in the activities of the laboratory (gaining supervised, hands-on experience with techniques and experimental protocols) and by becoming acquainted with the laboratory staff and the goals of the research project. Students will be taught by discussions with the instructor, by reading relevant literature and by active participation in laboratory procedures. The long-term goal of this course is to provide exposure to a variety of experimental approaches and to help in the identification of a supervisory professor and dissertation project. Neuroscience Program students are required to spend at least 3 credit hours in each of three different laboratories (that is, do three different rotations), and must complete the three rotations before the end of their fifth term in the program. Grading is A, B, C, F and based on participation in lab discussions and experiments.

3-8 credits
Term offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory, 9-24 (variable)
Instructors: Staff


Research (NEUR 6097)

Formal research directed toward development of the dissertation research for the Doctor of Philosophy degree. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the student's research supervisor and will be assigned as satisfactory or unsatisfactory.

Prerequisites: Admission to a research group by a mentor
1-8 Credits
Term offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Year offered: Annually


Dissertation (NEUR 6099)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing the Doctor of Philosophy degree to enroll in this course.  This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the dissertation for the Doctor of Philosophy degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student's supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).

Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Neurobiology of Disease II (NEUR 6182): Implication of Improper Nucleic Acid Processing in Neurological Disease

This course will examine the newly emerging importance of how defects in nucleic acid post-transcriptional processing/splicing, nuclear and cellular transport, RNA toxicity, and RAN mediated translation impact neurodegenerative diseases. The course will meet once per week and will consist of1 hour lecture followed by a 1 hour faculty-led discussion of the recent literature related to the topic. Introductory lectures will orient students in the field with seminal works and finding, while subsequent meetings will be driven by student-generated discussion of assigned papers from the literature that develop or challenge current dogma.

1 credit Prerequisite: Graduate Level Neuroscience Course
Term offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Conference or discussion, 1
Instructors: Dr. Partha Sarkar, Dr. Rakez Kayed


Seminar (NEUR 6195)

The objectives of this course are to: 1) expose the students to a wide range of current topics in neuroscience and 2) provide the students with experience in organizing and presenting seminars. Exposure to current topics in neuroscience will be accomplished by required attendance at seminars presented by local and visiting scientists. Experience in organizing and presenting seminars will be obtained by requiring the students to organize and present a seminar each year until students are admitted to candidacy. Their performance will be evaluated by the program faculty. Entry-level students present seminars based on original literature in a selected topic area. Advanced students will be expected to present literature and experimental data related to their research experiences. Grading when enrolled for attendance only will be S/U. Grading when presenting will be A, B, C, F based on performance and continued attendance at other seminars.

1 credit
Term offered: Fall, Spring, Summer (Required every term student is enrolled)
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Seminar, 1
Instructor: Dr. Tom Green
Course Director: Chairman, Program Advisory Committee


Project Proposal Preparation (NEUR 6208)

This course provides skills to develop a dissertation proposal and tools to understand how to best proceed in the preparation of a research proposal or to anticipate reviewer responses. Its goals are to acquire knowledge about basic principles governing proposed topic of dissertation; to become familiar with assessment of current research literature; to acquire practice in process of preparing, giving and critiquing a research proposal; to learn how to evaluate a grant and respond to such a critique by participating in an NIH style study section. Sample NIH grants and reviews are provided; and to learn how to present such evaluations in a group setting; to prepare a riposte and resubmit a research proposal after review. The course will be taught using some didactic presentations by faculty on what is a chalk talk, desired features of a proposal, the NIH study section approach, how to critique a proposal and how to respond to a critique with examples. The faculty will also facilitate interactive discussions related to the above. The student will be expected to prepare a chalk talk of their proposed project, to write a proposal and a critique of a fellow student’s proposal, to discuss the critiqued proposal, to prepare a riposte and resubmission. Grades will be based on class participation, presentations and written material.

2 credits
Prerequisites: Admission to a research group by a mentor
Term offered: Fall
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 1; Discussion 2
Course Directors: Dr. Owen Hamill, Dr. Tom Green


Teaching in Neuroscience (NEUR 6220)

The objectives of this elective course are to provide students with an opportunity to gain experience in how to teach and to enhance their knowledge of neuroscience. Students will participate in teaching and discussion in the laboratories of the Neuroscience and Human Behavior course (NEUR 6503), which is offered to graduate students and medical students. The students have two one-hour discussion session with faculty lab instructors each week to review the material to be covered in lab and to practice teaching skills. They will then assist in two two-hour laboratory sessions each week. Students will be expected to review material in a group session in the lab, answer questions, point out and explain structures and functional relationships of laboratory specimens, assist with demonstrations and examinations, and assist in setting up and organizing lab materials. Grading will be based on knowledge of material (20%), ability to present reviews to class clearly (40%), ability to interact effectively with small groups in lab (20%), and participation in preparatory sessions and demonstrations (20%).

2 credits
Prerequisite: NEUR 6503, NEUR 6403, or consent of instructor
Term offered: Spring
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Conference or discussion, 1, Laboratory, 4
Instructor: Dr. Owen Hamill


Synapses: Development & Degeneration (NEUR 6221)

Synapses are fundamental units of communication in a nervous system that is composed of roughly a billion neurons. Almost all of the neurodegenerative disorders disrupt synapses and since they play such a central role in neuronal communication, this leads to a dramatic decrease in cognitive abilities of patients suffering with these debilitating disorders. The course will start with a brief introduction to synapse development and maintenance, leading into the molecular mechanisms of synapse degeneration in neurodegenerative disorders. The course aims to provide students with the essentials required to understand, and ask questions about molecular mechanisms of neurodegeneration.

2 credits
Prerequisite: None
Term offered: Summer
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Conference or discussion, 2.
Instructors: Dr. Yogesh Wairkar, Dr. Rakez Kayed


Neuroscience of Infectious Disease (NEUR 6226)

Sequelae are defined as a condition resultant of disease, typically a chronic complication of an acute illness. Neurological sequelae are those complications involving the brain and central nervous system and can include intellectual disability, seizures, emotional instability, vision loss, and hearing loss. Although many infections may lead to sequelae, the related pathology and the mechanisms associated with sequelae have not been fully identified. Recent outbreaks of Ebola and Zika virus have further exemplified the need for models to study the development of these conditions.

a) The objective of this course is to provide an overview of the immune response to viruses, bacteria and parasites, the neuroimmune response, neuroanatomy, CNS structural and functional domains, the blood brain barrier, and examples of viral, bacterial, and parasitic encephalopathies with particular focus on route of entry to the CNS (if known), specific neuroimmune responses (if known), and susceptible brain regions (if known). b) Teaching techniques to be employed will be didactic lectures and journal club presentations c) Methods of evaluation will be a 1) final exam, 2) journal club presentation d) Basis for grading will be 1) class participation, 2) in-class exams, 3) attendance, 4) journal club presentation.

3 credits
Prerequisite: None
Term offered: Spring
Year offered: Biennially-Even Years
Hours per week: Lecture, 2; Laboratory 3.
Course Directors: Dr. Kelly Dineley, Dr. Dennis Bente


Integrative Neuroscience (NEUR 6403 )

This required course will form a basis for understanding the organization, functions and disorders of the nervous system. We will study the neurobiological mechanisms of major sensory, motor, emotional-affective and cognitive functions and dysfunctions. The format will be two weekly sessions of lectures with discussion about important concepts and current topics in neuroscience that focus on critical features of integrative nervous system functions: organizational principles of the nervous system, integration among systems, synaptic and cellular plasticity in physiological and disease states, and underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms. Grades will be based on class participation and on midterm and final written examinations.

4 credits
Term offered: Summer
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 4
Instructor: Dr. Owen Hamill


Nursing Graduate Program Course Descriptions


Independent Study (GNRS 6088)

Detailed or in-depth study in a specific topic area. Topic and mode of study are agreed upon by student(s) and instructor. May be repeated when topics vary.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor. A course plan must be completed, signed by both the faculty and the student, and submitted to and approved by the Nursing PhD program director.
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable


Research (GNRS 6097)

Formal research directed toward completion of the Doctor of Philosophy degree. The student will develop a research proposal on a topic of his or her own choosing with faculty advice.

Prerequisites: Completion of required course work
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable


Thesis (GNRS 6098)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing a Master of Science or Master of Arts degree to enroll in this course. This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the thesis for the Master of Science or Master of Arts degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student’s level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student’s supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Dissertation (GNRS 6099)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing the Doctor of Philosophy degree to enroll in this course.  This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the dissertation for the Doctor of Philosophy degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student's supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Doctoral Research Seminar (GNRS 6340)

This course is designed for students who are initiating candidacy for the doctoral degree. Participants present their proposals for research in nursing. Emphasis is placed on collegial exchange and shared learning through analysis and critique. Evaluation of student progress is based on presentation and participation.

Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy for the Nursing PhD Program
Term offered: I,II,III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Seminar 3
Instructor: Dr. Darlene Martin


History and Philosophy of Science in Nursing (GNRS 6341)

This course focuses on the study of the history and scope of knowledge in the science of health promotion, human response, and healing and its relationship to nursing science. Epistemological assumptions, theoretical explanations, empiricism, intervention, and social outcomes will be explored. Diverse ways of knowing will be contrasted with the processes of scientific discovery. Evaluation of student progress is based on seminar participation, science paper, and final exam.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Darlene Martin


Qualitative Research Methods (GNRS 6348)

This course guides students in developing knowledge and skills required for the conduct of qualitative investigations that seek to elicit subjective interpretations of health, healing, and human response phenomena from persons who know and live with them. Selected research approaches and their philosophical and epistemological traditions are explored and critiqued for their usefulness in revealing rich descriptions of contexts, experiences, and meanings. Theoretical, ethical and practical issues are critically analyzed in the context of knowledge development, trustworthiness, diffusion, utilization, and evaluation. Evaluation of student progress is based on course participation, critiques, interpretive exercise, written first draft of proposal and presentations.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor; GNRS 6341, 6400
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Carolyn Phillips



Survey of Instrumentation (GNRS 6352)

The course provides a study of the theories and methods of instrument development and psychometric assessment applied to nursing and health care research. The basic psychometric properties to be assessed and methods to apply them in advance of conducting research are explored. This course is conducted fully online. Evaluation of student progress is based on individual writing assignments and group work.

Course Instructor: Hoang Nguyen, PhD


Nursing Science I (GNRS 6357)

This course emphasizes theories and research related to health promotion, human response, and healing. The analysis, critical evaluation, and interpretation of research in these areas provide students with the foundation to explore original ideas for the purpose of generating nursing knowledge. Theories and related research will be presented and discussed. Students will delineate areas of research interest consistent with the course foci. Evaluation is based on papers, class presentations, and class participation.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Mary O’Keefe


Pedagogy: Teaching, Research and Scholarship in the Clinical Environment (GNRS 6362)

This course explores the interplay of scholarship, pedagogy and clinical expertise in the patient care environment. Students’ self-assessments will determine the specific clinical populations and care environments where they will participate in selected clinical learning experiences and guided readings. Emphasis also is placed on student’s exploration of the clinical and research literature related to the selected patient population, identification of researchable questions related to that patient population and the ramifications of teaching students within the unique clinical venue.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Carolyn Phillips


Concepts and Theories in Nursing (GNRS 6400)

The course provides an introduction to the nature of scientific inquiry and theoretical conceptualizations within the discipline of nursing. Origins and strategies of theory development and concept analysis are examined with particular emphasis on methods and processes of theory construction, application and evaluation and approaches to concept analysis. Theories and concepts will be evaluated within the context of published research reports. Evaluation of student progress and mastery is determined by class participation, written papers and formal presentations.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 4
Instructor: Dr. Yolanda Davila


Foundation of Adult Learning (GNRS 5309)

This course will focus on developing a foundation in andragogy for faculty in higher education in a learning centered environment. The learning theories and adult learning principles will serve as a framework for the course, incorporating the development of educational objectives. The socioeconomic and technological influences will be explored as well as ethical and legal considerations in multiple educational environments.

Prerequisites: Graduate standing and consent of instructor
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Stephens


Teaching Practicum (GNRS 5320)

The role of the nurse educator is actualized through the practicum experiences that integrate knowledge from previous courses. The experienced nurse will use knowledge of adult learning principles, curriculum development and evaluation processes in the classroom, lab and clinical setting to assist students to meet educational objectives through innovative teaching, integrating relevant theory and research as part of the education in the health care arena. The practicum will include mentoring by faculty and working with clinical staff and preceptors in the clinical settings. The development and completion of professional d teaching portfolios will demonstrate the activities and achievement within the program.

Prerequisites: Graduate standing, GNRS 5319, and consent of instructor
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Stephens


Research Practicum (6039)

As part of the research development of the nursing PhD student, this course is designed to provide the student with opportunities to practice and master a variety of research skills and competencies. Building upon prior didactic learning, students in this experience have the opportunity to select specific areas of research interest and work directly with a faculty researcher in a specific project and role.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor. A course plan must be completed, signed by both the faculty and the student, and submitted to and approved by the Nursing PhD program director.
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable


Quantitative Research Methods (GNRS 6346)

This course is designed to explore the use of quantitative research approaches in the study of human response, health promotion, and healing processes in nursing. The course focuses on quantitative research methodologies, including designs, sampling, measurement methods, and analysis. Emphasis will be placed on models used in writing quantitative questions and hypotheses, and on the governing principles and decision points of research design. Students will be given the opportunity to develop their ideas about human response, health promotion, and healing processes in nursing in the design of a research project using quantitative approaches. Evaluation of student progress is based on participation, presentation, and paper.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Mary O’Keefe


Qualitative Data Management (GNRS 6351)

This course continues the exploration of qualitative research that began with GNRS 6348: Qualitative Research Methods. The course introduces students to qualitative data management techniques and a variety of analytic strategies used by qualitative researchers to transform and interpret qualitative data. Data analytic strategies are discussed and critiqued from a variety of perspectives, including the impact of the philosophical foundations of selected qualitative approaches on the forms of data collected and how data are managed and analyzed. Practical experiences will assist students to develop the beginning skills required to collect and analyze qualitative data , make informed decisions about analytic strategies, articulate the thinking that supports data analyses, report qualitative findings and interpretations, and engage in detailed discussions of trustworthiness. Ethical and practical issues related to online qualitative research as well as selected computer software programs that support data collection, management and analysis are examined and critiqued. Theoretical and practical issues relevant to the contributions qualitative research can make to nursing's knowledge of human response, health promotion and healing are discussed. Evaluation of student progress is based on class participation, data collection, management and analysis, written papers, class presentations and critiques.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor; GNRS 6400, 6341, 6348
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Carolyn Phillips


Nursing Science II (GNRS 6358)

This course builds upon Nursing Science I, emphasizing application of theories and research processes related to Health Promotion, Healing and Human Response within the context of Biobehavioral, Vulnerable Populations, and Contemporary Pedagogy research. Students learn principles of human subjects' protection and develop skills in analysis and synthesis of research data, delineation of researchable question(s), and identifying appropriate research methodology. Evaluation is based on completion of online modules, participation, presentations, written papers, and journal assignments.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Mary O’Keefe


Advanced Statistics (GNRS 6402)

This is an applied course in statistical analysis that covers widely used univariate and multivariate analyses with an emphasis on understanding and application of fundamental analytical techniques. The course goals are to gain a working vocabulary of important statistical methods, to understand fundamental design issues related to statistical analyses, and to improve the ability to critically evaluate published findings. Evaluation of student progress and mastery is based on timely completion of assigned modules and homework, homework exercise, module exams, midterm and final exams.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 4
Instructor: Dr. Sheryl Bishop


Curriculum Design (GNRS 5322)

This course provides a theoretical basis for understanding the principles of curriculum design and evaluation as applied to programs of higher education in nursing. Trends and issues in nursing, health care, and society are explored as they affect the process of curriculum development. Opportunities to practice the elements of curriculum building including the role of philosophy/mission statements, framework development (both conceptual and theoretical), program objectives/outcomes, content mapping, course sequencing, clinical practice, and evaluation will be provided.

Prerequisites: Graduate standing and consent of instructor
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Stephens


Health Care Policy (GDNP 6325)

This course examines current issues in health care policy in the U.S. and the role of nurse leaders in affecting policy change. The influence of different political and economic conditions on health policy is analyzed within the context of historical, socioeconomic, ethical, legal and global perspectives. Students will engage in policy analysis and strategic planning of improving health care policy. The overall goal is to stimulate leadership in the policy process in advancing the profession of nursing and the health care of the public, with an emphasis on vulnerable populations.

Prerequisites: Graduate standing and consent of instructor
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Linda Rounds


Informatics in Transformation of Healthcare (GDNP 6337)

This course presents the application of informatics and technology to health care. Successes and failures in implementation of information technology are evaluated, with a focus on practice improvement, innovative practice models, and disruptive innovation. Topics will address the collection and use of data for policy and quality within healthcare settings. Information technology as a mode to transform healthcare delivery will be stressed. Upon completion of this course and its related activities, the student will have demonstrated the ability to:
1. Explain traditional use of data in healthcare delivery systems.
2. Examine salient issues related to the use of data in healthcare decision-making.
3. Analyze the impact of informatics and technology on the development of health policies, practice improvement, and disruptive innovations.
4. Analyze the value of informatics and technology for professional nursing and advanced practice nursing.
5. Apply information to address a health disparities issue.

Prerequisites: Graduate standing and consent of instructor
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Linda Rounds


Ethics in Health Care and Research (GNRS 6347)

This course examines substantive moral and ethical issues that emerge in contemporary health care and explores the technological, socio-political, legal, and economic variables that have helped shape these dilemmas. There is an analysis of nurses’ and other health professionals’ historical traditions as moral agents and patient advocates as well as analysis of current ethical-legal obligations and challenges/barriers to those advocacy roles in a rapidly changing health care environment. The course explores comparative ethical theories and models of ethical decision-making that may serve as a framework for guiding both clinical practice and scholarship in health care. There is also an examination of ethical-legal issues that arise in the context of conducting research. Evaluation of student progress is based on seminar participation, oral presentation, and term paper.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Darlene Martin


Clinical Investigations in Nursing (GNRS 6350)

This course focuses on specific clinical investigations in nursing with emphasis on health promotion, human response to illness, and healing practices. The use of concepts and theories in clinical investigation, methodological issues in data management, and instrumentation and measurement are examined within the context of clinical significance to nursing practice. Evaluation of student progress is based on research analysis, completion of a proposal, and seminar participation.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor; GNRS 6357, 6358
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Terese Verklan


Quantitative Data Management (GNRS 6361)

This is a course in research data management specifically focused on facilitating the design and implementation of quantitative research projects as well as the preparation of data for statistical analyses. It is intended to address required database structures for existing statistical packages to reinforce basic principles of research design and required statistical level of measurement for proper analytical decisions. Students will be required to design and set up basic database, collect an exemplar sample of data, then test their data structures with basic, widely used statistical computer analyses through a series of computer exercises utilizing SPSS as an exemplar. Weekly homework assignments will address data structure, level of measurement, coding, documentation, selection of variables appropriate to various analyses and exemplar statistical computer analyses. Finally, exercises with translating results into graphic displays will complete the cycle of design, collection, data entry, data verification, data analyses and display.

Prerequisites: Admission to the Nursing PhD Program or permission of instructor
Term offered: III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Bishop


Program Evaluation (GNRS 5311)

Program evaluation encompasses curriculum, students, faculty and educational environments. The course will include developing assessment and evaluation methods including student learning outcomes for use in multiple educational environments. Also preparing recommendations from the information and data received from assessments will be included. The course will conclude with the review of the importance of program evaluation for quality improvement and approval from accrediting agencies.

Prerequisites: Graduate standing and consent of instructor
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Stephens


Learning Environment (GNRS 5312)

The course will focus on elements of the learning environment including the role of the faculty as the facilitator of learning and considerations of the learner in multiple educational environments. As a facilitator of learning, innovative educational strategies that promote learning and the use of emerging technologies will be explored in multiple educational environments. Appropriate assessment techniques will validate the completion of the learning outcomes.

Prerequisites: Graduate standing and consent of instructor
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 3
Instructor: Dr. Stephens


Pharmacology & Toxicology Course Descriptions


Lab Rotation (PHTO 6022)

The objectives of this course are to acquaint students with the research activities of individual faculty members and to assist students in choosing their areas of specialization. The faculty member and student will design a research project and work out a time schedule committing the student to three to 24 hours per week in the laboratory. The student will prepare an abstract describing the objectives and methodology of the study and then conduct the study under the faculty member's supervision. A final report stating the methods, results, interpretation, problems encountered, and suggestions for future research will be required. In addition to carrying out the research proposal the student will be expected to gain a knowledge of the current literature relevant to the project. Grading will be based on the student's laboratory performance, final written report, and an oral presentation of the project. Grading will be A, B, C, F. Normally, a student entering the program without an advanced degree will be required to complete 12 hours of credit with a grade of B or better prior to gaining admission to candidacy. Individual requirements may vary depending on the research experience of the student.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 3 24


Capstone (PHTO 6094)

Description: This course is for students pursuing a Master’s degree and who are not doing a thesis or dissertation but instead are carrying out a project or capstone. The project/capstone consists of any of the following activities: i) Writing a review paper on a topic that the student will select together with a mentor and/or a committee; ii) Writing a short research paper on a topic that the student will select together with a mentor and/or a committee; iii) Hands-on activity that would result in generating/optimizing a protocol or establishing an assay; iv) Computational exercise around a well-defined scientific project that includes bioinformatics or data analysis; v) Internship in industry with written report. Grades are based on a satisfactory or unsatisfactory performance.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I,II,III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 3-6
Instructor: Laezza


Research (PHTO 6097)

Research on thesis or dissertation project under the direction of supervising professor. The research is graded as satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U).

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Laboratory 3 27


Thesis (PHTO 6098)

Formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the thesis for the Master of Science degree under the direction of the student's supervisory committee. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student's supervisory committee and will be assigned as satisfactory or unsatisfactory.
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually


Dissertation (PHTO 6099)

Once admitted to candidacy, it is required for students pursuing the Doctor of Philosophy degree to enroll in this course. This course is for the formal research and writing leading to the preparation and completion of the dissertation for the Doctor of Philosophy degree while under the direction of the student’s supervisory committee. The student will pursue the proposed research and present a progress report and/or agreed upon objectives to the mentor and/or supervisory committee for approval and recommendations. Grading will be based upon the student's level of performance as reported by the chairperson of the student's supervisory committee and will be assigned as Satisfactory (S), Needs Improvement (N), or Unsatisfactory (U).
Prerequisites: Admission to candidacy
Terms offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours per week: Variable 3-9


Neuroaddicts Journal Club (PHTO 6121)

The Neuroaddicts Journal Club provides a more cohesive venue for trainees and exposes mentees to a wider range of neuroscience and addictions topics. The goals are for mentees to learn critical thinking of the published literature, the requirements and construction of high quality manuscripts, and presentation skills. Within this environment, mentees have a prime opportunity to refine the ability to converse in both scientific and collegial domains, and become comfortable with asking questions and thinking critical/constructively.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 1
Instructor: Dr. Noelle Anastasio


Advances in Mental Health Research (PHTO 6123)

This course will provide a solid understanding of current mental health research and promote understanding of factors advancing future groundbreaking mental health research. The course will have flexible format, including sessions where students discuss relevant papers, present their own data, discuss a wide range of career-development issues, learn about pharmacotherapeutic development, learn advanced grant-writing principles, discuss relevant ethical issues, and learn advanced research techniques. Attendance 50%, participation in classroom discussion 50%. A satisfactory grade requires a score of 80%.

Prerequisites: None
Term Offered: I, II, III
Year Offered: Annually
Hours Per Week: 2
Instructor: Dr. Thomas Green and Dr. Fernanda Laezza


Bioinformatics Tools and Applications (PHTO 6125)

The goal of the class is to introduce the students to the various bioinformatics tools available for the analysis DNA and RNA sequencing data. Students will be provided with an overview of the most common bioinformatics tasks they will face in the research. During the class, students will have hands on experience performing analysis of the data generated by the variety of scientific instruments and bioinformatics tools addressing real-life clinical and scientific applications. The class will be divided into three sections: pathogen detection, gene expression, and microbiome analysis. Students will be taught how to use public bioinformatics resources such as GeneBank, SRA, PATRIC, SILVa, and I2B2.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours Per Week: 1
Instructor: Dr. George Golovko


Environmental Toxicology Research Review (PHTO 6126)

This course begins in the Fall term and extends to the Spring term. It is an open discussion and presentation course, and will include monthly presentation of current literature papers, selected by the students, in consultation and development with the Course Director, prior to each presentation. This will include: 1) the process of paper selection, 2) the review of potential auxiliary papers, and 3) distribution of the papers to the class participants. Using guidelines developed by the Course Director, students will each present 1-2 papers from the current toxicology-relevant literature, in a semi-formal presentation venue, with an open discussion format. In this discussion time, presenting students will be responsible for the development and delivery of presentation on their selected research paper(s). Areas required to be covered within the presentation are: 1) hypothesis, 2) methods and approach, 3) statistical analyses, 4) main finding(s), 5) appropriateness of overall conclusions, 6) strengths and weaknesses of study, and 6) whether they would accept the paper for publication as is, or with modification(s), and what those modifications, if necessary, would be. Open discussion will include questioning the presenter about various important aspects of the study being presented, including the hypothesis, experimental design, statistics, and results. Students register for the course in both terms. A grade of “G” (longitudinal) will be assigned at the end of the Fall term and a single, 1-hour course grade will be assigned at the end of the Spring term. Grading will be based on paper presentation, participation in classroom discussion, and attendance

Prerequisites: Permission of course director
Terms offered: I, II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 2
Instructor: Ameredes


Pharmacology & Toxicology STD Journal Club (PHTO 6190)

This course is designed to provide an opportunity for students to practice formal presentation skills and discuss science. Students will select research articles from pharmacological journals for presentation to students and student groups. Each student will present and discuss at least one paper per semester depending on the number of students enrolled in the course. Grades will be based on attendance and quality of presentation. Pharmacology students are required to be enrolled in this course every term offered, except for the last term.

Prerequisites: None
Term Offered: I, II
Year Offered: Annually
Hours Per Week: Conference or Discussion 1
Instructor: Dr. Miriam Falzon


Seminar in Pharmacology & Toxicology (PHTO 6195)

Presentations by guest lecturers, staff, and students on the progress of their own research, as well as review of recent advances in pharmacology. Students will receive a grade of satisfactory (S) or unsatisfactory (U) based on attendance and participation. Prerequisites: Students are required to be enrolled in this course every term offered, except for the last term.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I, II, III
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Seminar 1
Instructor: Dr. Kangling Zhang


ECT Pharmacology (PHTO 6213)

Survey of Pharmacology course covering drugs that affect the endocrine system, drugs used in cancer chemotherapy, anti-parasitic drugs, drugs to treat gastrointestinal (GI) system, anti-dhistomines, anti-inflammatory drugs and an introduction to toxicology and specific toxic agents.

Prerequisites: None
Terms offered: II
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 4


Introductory to Toxicology Risk Assessment (PHTO 6224)

The objective of this course is to provide a basic foundation on the toxicological risk assessment process. The course format is lecture-based with supplement from online materials and experiences, as well as practical application aligned with book chapter commentary, and case studies. Students will be provided a risk assessment simulation exercise to experience and understand the risk assessment process. Within this course, students learn about: 1) the building blocks of risk assessment, 2) the risk assessment process, 3) how risk assessment is applied and used in decision making scenarios, 4) current and emerging issues in risk assessment, and 5) the skills and professional resources available to those interested in risk assessment. After completing the course, the student will be able to: 1) define and explain toxicological risk assessment, 2) comprehend the application of risk assessment, 3) demonstrate effective use of risk assessment technique, 4) demonstrate competent science and math skills associated with risk assessment, 5) employ ethical principles in the application of risk assessment, 6) demonstrate the ability to work effectively in teams and in discussion-based format. Course performance grading will be standard letter grades, based on exams, individual projects, class participation/discussion, and attendance.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I
Year Offered: Biennially – Odd Years
Hours per week: 2
Instructor: Dr. Sol Bobst


Introduction to Computational Toxicology (PHTO 6225)

The objective of this course is to provide a basic foundation in computational toxicology methods, applications, and practical skills. The course format is a hybrid of online lectures and webinars supplemented with online materials as well as practical application aligned with project examples. Students will be provided an opportunity to I) learn the background and application of QSAR methods for in silico prediction of toxic endpoints, as well as application for industrial and pharmaceutical product development 2) learn the background of modeling pharmacologicall pharmacodynamic principles as well as systems biology modeling for predictive value, and demonstrate some competency in modeling via an exercise, and 3) learn the background and application of publicly available toxicology databases, and how the data can be used for experimental and regulatory purposes, as well as a practical exercise using a database for a project and focused outcome

Online discussions will be asynchronous with clear start times and deadlines for students to post to the discussion forum. Students are expected, at the minimum, to provide at least one initial post and one reply post for each weekly topic. Depending on the course size, students may be asked to lead discussions for the week. The course instructor will set the course discussion question for the week and provide the journal club citation and pdf if necessary, though students will be encouraged to use their library research skills when papers are available that way. At the end of the discussion week, students will be graded on their level of participation. The expectations for online discussions will be explained, along with a grading rubric for the assignment of grades that is based on the quality and content of the online discussion postings. Lecture notes will also be available within Pilot on a weekly basis, so that students have the course material available to them during the week, and if they bring laptops to the course, they can use interactive tools on risk assessment during lectures or discussions to meet the applied learning objectives

Prerequisites: Instructor or Director Approval
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: Lecture 2 Discussion 1
Instructor: Dr. Sol Bobst


Autonomic, Cardiovascular and Central Nervous System Pharmacology (PHTO 6312)

This fifteen-week course serves as an introduction to the cellular, biochemical, and molecular effects of pharmacological agents acting on the autonomic and central nervous systems as well as the cardiovascular and renal systems. Prior to detailed presentations of the various classes of agents used to treat disorders of the aforementioned systems, the pertinent physiology of each system will be reviewed. The therapeutic use, mechanism of action, adverse effects, and absorption, distribution, and metabolism will be emphasized for each pharmacological agent presented in class. This course will be graded on the basis of four in-class examinations.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I
Year offered: Annually
Hours per week: 4.5
Instructor: Dr. John Allen


Principles of Environmental Toxicology (PHTO 6319)

This course will be a graduate-level presentation of fundamental principles of environmental toxicology, including basic concepts like ADME (absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion), mechanisms of toxicity and injury, inflammation and ROS, overviews of discipline-specific toxicology (e.g., genetic toxicology, immunotoxicology, and toxicant-associated carcinogenesis), as well as organ-system-based toxicology covering major organ systems of the body (e.g., neurotoxicology, hepatotoxicology, renal toxicology, cardiovascular toxicology, and respiratory toxicology), and including developmental toxicology. Grades will be calculated based on upon 2 mid-term and final in-class exams, and class attendance.

Prerequisites: None
Term offered: I
Year Offered: Biennially – Even Years
Hours per week: 3
Instructor: Dr. Bill Ameredes