The Department of Bioengineering participates in the MD/Ph.D. program, administered by the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP). Students who wish to follow this path should complete a combined application through MSTP.
MSTP students start their Ph.D. work with a lab rotation during the summer immediately prior to starting medical school. In September they enter medical school with their class.
During the second summer they do another lab rotation (Ph.D. credit), then proceed to the second year of medical school. At the end of the second year they pass Part 1 of the National Board Exams. That summer they can either do a third lab rotation or enter the graduate program. After completing their Ph.D. coursework, they return to the final two years of medical school (clinical rotations).
The following rules and principles apply:
- Neither the MD nor the Ph.D. requirements are reduced from the normal requirements.
- Bioengineering core requirements related to physiology, biostatistics, and biochemistry can be waived and other courses substituted. Any reduction in total credits required would be made by special request to and review by the Student Affairs Committee.
- Credits for the normal MD program cannot be used as credits for the Ph.D. program, in accordance with the University's rule against double accreditation. However, while completing the MD portion of the program, a student may be able to fit in other graduate credits, for example, thesis research.
- The Ph.D. component of the combined program can be accomplished in three years, for a total program of seven years. Early definition of the thesis program is strongly encouraged. Mechanisms including using the summer before starting Medical School and the summers after the first and second years for research. The Medical School requires using these three summers for the laboratory program.
- The Qualifying Examination should be taken as early as possible during the program, and no later than 2.5 years after entering the combined program.