Master of Pharmaceutical Bioengineering (PHARBE)
- Program Requirements
- Progression through Program
- Tuition and Fees
- Application Procedures
- PHARBE Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)
The PHARBE program is an evening degree program designed to enable working local engineers, scientists, researchers, and professionals in the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and related industries to explore advanced education in the areas of molecular and cellular biology, drug discovery and design, pharmaceutics, and translational pharmaceutics. Professionals may also complete three certificate programs without applying for degree status.
- B.S. degree or equivalent in a relevant science (field/research), public health (biomedical related) or engineering (field/research) related, or have a B.S. degree or equivalent in unrelated field (ex. Business) and 2 years experience working within a scientific or engineering group for a biotechnology or pharmaceutical company or related industry. Clinical degrees are considered.
- Applicants who have a bachelor’s degree other than a B.S. (ex. B.A. degrees), professional experience, and completed recommended prerequisite course work will also be considered for admission.
- Students who have a 3.0 GPA (on a 4.0 Scale) in the last 90 quarter credit hours (60 semester credit hours) and meet prerequisite requirements. Students who have a BA/BS degree with under a 3.0 GPA and have 2 years work experience may be approved for GNM status for Basic Biosciences. Students who receive a 3.0 or above in their Basic Biosciences courses under GNM status are considered for degree admissions.
Prerequisite Course Requirements
Applicants should complete the prerequisite courses with a 2.0 or greater before applying to the degree program. Students whose undergraduate degree majors are in engineering, biology, chemistry or pharmacy are exempt from the prerequisite course requirement.
- Calculus: Minimum of 1 quarter (or 1 semester) of college calculus
- Chemistry: Minimum of 2 quarters (1 semester) college general chemistry Additional course in organic chemistry is recommended.
- Biology: Minimum of 1 quarter (semester) of general biology
- Physics: 1 quarter (Physics 114).
Applicants will be evaluated on professional experience, previous degrees earned, or most recent/undergraduate GPA, Basic Biosciences courses GPA (if applicable), letters of recommendation, statement of intent, and GRE test scores. Please note that admission to the degree is not guaranteed, even if you choose to take the Pharmaceutical Bioengineering Certificates prior to applying to the Master's program.
Applicants who do not qualify for admission to the PHARBE degree program may be admitted to courses and/or to Pharmaceutical Bioengineering Certificate programs.
English Proficiency: Students who are non-native English speakers are expected to have adequate English language proficiency.
The Graduate School requires a TOEFL score of at least 580, unless applicants are citizens of Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, or the United Kingdom; or hold a bachelor's or advanced degree from an accredited institution in any of these countries.
Program Technology Requirements.
To participate in this program, students are required to have reliable access to either a home or office computer (MAC or PC) with current operating system (ex. Windows XP or greater for PC), current web browser (Internet Explorer or Firefox) and a high-speed internet connection and phone (cellular or landline). Some program courses requires students to bring wireless enabled laptops to complete in-class assignments and online exams.
Graduate School Frequently Asked Questions - Answers to common questions regarding international application.
This program does not qualify as full-time study, and therefore does not meet requirements for an F-1 visa. However, if you are an F-1 student currently enrolled full time in another program, OR you are in the United States on some other type of visa (not F-1), you may be eligible to take a certificate program or course. For complete details, or to contact an adviser, see Visa Information.
Degree Program Requirements
The requirements to earn the Master of Pharmaceutical Bioengineering can be completed in approximately 2 ½ to 3 years.
Program requires completion of 40 credit hours within the program and with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better.
Progression through Program
Core Required Courses
Basic Biosciences Curriculum (20 Credits):
- Molecular and Cellular Biology I (4 Credits)
- Molecular and Cellular Biology II (4 Credits)
- Pharmaceutics I (4 Credits)
- Pharmaceutics II (4 Credits)
- Statistics and Experimental Design (4 Credits)
Students are required to take 16 credit hours from one of two advanced tracks in Translational Pharmaceutics or Drug Discovery & Design. Students will have to complete 20 credit hours of the Basic Biosciences core courses before enrolling in advanced track courses.
- Preclinical Development (4 Credits)
- Process Development (4 Credits)
- Formulation & Delivery (4 Credits)
- Clinical Development (4 Credits)
Drug Discovery and Design (16 Credits)
- Molecular Biotechnology (4 Credits)
- Drug Discovery & Design (4 Credits)
- Molecular Targets & Drug Classes (4 Credits)
- Systems Biology & Bioinformatics (4 Credits)
Departmental Seminar (4 Credits)
Students are required to take 4 credits of Department of Bioengineering seminar.
Optional Capstone Project
Students have the option of completing a professional capstone project in either the Drug Discovery & Design or Process Development courses.
The capstone project provides an opportunity for students with limited experience in engineering and scientific research settings to hone their skills through development of a professional project or for experienced students who wish to pursue advanced coursework in an area of particular area of interest. The capstone project is arranged with, and approved by, course faculty at the beginning of the course.
Students write and submit a professional paper and at the conclusion of the course, make a formal presentation of their project to course and departmental faculty, the PHARBE program directors and fellow students.
Core Track: Basic Bioscience
Course 1: PHARBE 500 - Molecular and Cellular Biology for Pharmaceutical Bioengineering I (WINTER) 4 Credits
Fundamental molecular processes that occur in living organizations. Structure and organization of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. Molecular basis of cellular structure and behaviors of cell membranes, environmental sensing and motility, signaling pathways and differentiation are studied. Use of online literature/media resources and bioinformatics tools are integrated into course.
Course 2: PHARBE 501 - Molecular and Cellular Biology for Pharmaceutical Bioengineering II (SPRING) 4 Credits
Prokaryotic and eukaryotic gene structure and regulation, viruses, signaling pathways, RNA, DNA, metagenomics, and systems biology through a case based approach. Student presentations of select research topics are integrated into curriculum to develop critical thinking approaches to the latest developments in the field. Pre-requisite: PHARBE 500 or permission of instructor.
Course 3: PHARBE 502 Pharmaceutics I (AUTUMN) 4 Credits
Covers the drug development process for both small molecules and biological form discovery stage through the end of phase 1. Addresses the science, logistics, and regulatory environment of preclinical (pharmacology, PKDM, toxicology, CMC) and early clinical development.
Course 4: PHARBE 503 Pharmaceutics II (WINTER) 4 CREDITS
Phases II and III of the drug development process, including clinical study design, safety, pharmacology and statistics. An overview of preparation and filing of the New Drug Application (NDA). Prerequisite: PHARBE 502 or permission of instructor.
Course 5: Statistics and Experimental Design (SPRING) 4 CreditsBiostatistical concepts necessary for the interpretation, evaluation, and communication of biomedical research are introduced. Course topics include an introduction to biostatistics and statistical methods, design of experiment(DOE) as a discipline, and the use of statistics in clinical trial design and analysis.
Specialized Track 1: Drug Discovery (to be taken after Core courses)
Course 1: PHARBE 520 Molecular Biotechnology (AUTUMN) 4 credits
This laboratory-based course emphasizes concepts and the techniques/methodologies used in molecular biotechnologies. The practice-oriented lectures and laboratories cover tissue culture and assays, recombinant DNA methodologies such as DNA isolation, restriction mapping, cloning, site-directed mutagenesis, DNA sequencing, PCR techniques and applications, protein electrophoresis, ELISA analysis, and Western/Southern blotting methodologies.
Course 2: PHARBE 521 - Drug Discovery and Design (WINTER) 4 credits
General principles and current approaches involved in modern drug discovery and development. Specific aspects of human biology and disease, case studies in discovery, and the evolution of how these topics have merged. Novel drug discovery techniques and emerging non-standard therapeutics and the history of drugs and drug discovery.
Course 3: PHARBE 522 - Molecular Targets and Drug Classes (SPRING) 4 credits
Discussion of select medicinal compounds, emphasizing mechanism of action, biotransformation and structural and physical properties governing absorption, distribution, and excretion. Design of therapeutics to focus on maximizing efficacy while reducing toxicities. Compounds may include classical organic small-molecules, peptides, proteins, nucleic acids, lipids, carbohydrates and other bioactive chemical classes.
Course 4: PHARBE 523 Systems Biology and Bioinformatics (AUTUMN) 4 credits
Bioinformatics is the analytical use of computers to solve biological problems. Systems biology considers the emergent properties of biological processes and structures at a high level of integration. The course surveys methods for ‘omics, protein-folding prediction, phylogenetics, and simulations, making particular use of tools available online. Student presentations are emphasized.. Requires a wireless enabled laptop with current operating system for in-course exercises.
Specialized Track 2: Translational Pharmaceutics (to be taken after core courses)
Course 1: PHARBE 510 Preclinical Development (AUTUMN) 4 credits
Basic principles of pharmacokinetics and their application to the clinical setting, including: single-dose intravenous and oral kinetics, multiple dosing, nonlinear pharmacokinetics, metabolite kinetics, pharmacogenetics, and the role of disease in drug clearance and dose requirements, and kinetics of drug-drug interactions.
Course 2: PHARBE 511 - Process Development (WINTER) 4 Credits
Principles involved in designing and optimizing production processes for protein therapeutics. Technologies and methods used in the production of protein therapeutics and discussion of the interdependence of upstream, downstream, analytical, formulation and drug delivery technologies.
Course 3: PHARBE 512 - Formulation and Delivery (SPRING) 4 Credits
Introduction to drug delivery and formulation principles, systems, and applications. Overview of administration routes and associated delivery barriers, connection to drug pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics, and drug diffusion and permeation principles. Current and developmental biomaterials used for formulation and drug delivery systems.
Course 4: PHARBE 513 Clinical Development (AUTUMN) 4 Credits
This course will cover clinical trial design for drugs and devices. Students present their drug life cycle plans, phase III study synopsis, informed consent, target product profile and a group, go no go presentation. Topics include: clinical trial design, FDA and Institutional Review Boards, ethics, consents safety, and SWOT analysis.
*Courses are offered under BIOEN 599, Special Topics unless otherwise noted as offered as an assigned PHARBE course number.
Departmental Seminar: 4 Credits Required
BIOE 509: Bioengineering Departmental Seminar (WINTER, SPRING) 1 Credit
Research review and discussions centered on demonstrating approaches and solving scientific problems. Seminar lectures led by faculty and visiting faculty in Bioengineering and related disciplines.
Departmental Elective Option:
Journal Research Seminar : (AUTUMN, WINTER, SPRING, SUMMER) 1 Credit, Online
On-line presentation and discussion of topics related to the medical, clinical and pharmaceutical technology fields.
In this live online "Journal Club", students team up to research, analyze and discuss current journal articles in the Bioscience, Pharmaceutical and Medical Device fields. They will then summarize their findings in an online presentation to the other teams at the weekly online meeting, with questions and discussion to follow both during the "live" online meeting and on the discussion section of the class web site. This course provides full access and training in the use of the University of Washington Library system's online journal collection and literature search tools, along with select reference management, analysis and science social networking tools. Students are encouraged to investigate their own research topics or can choose papers from topics suggested by the instructor.
2012-2013 Tuition and Fees (Effective Autumn 2012 to Spring 2013)
|Tuition (Fee Rate):||$635 per credit|
|Non-Refundable Quarterly Registration Fee:||$42.00|
|UW Technology Fee|
Other Required Quarterly Fees:
Included in the other fees are the services & activities fee, IMA bond fee, the facilities renovation fee, and a financial aid fee made up of five percent of the other fees. Your Transaction Summary will display each of the components of these other fees. The fees are refundable on the same basis as tuition.
More information about these fees is available at http://f2.washington.edu/fm/sfs/tuition/components.
|Credits||Other Required Fees|
|10 and above||$235|
UPASS Fee: $76 Per Quarter.
UPASS Fee is required for all matriculated students and is paid through your MYUW account.
*All fees are subject to change at any time and without notice.
Students have the option to apply to the Master's program annually in autumn or take the Basic Biosciences Certificate and apply to the degree. If students wish to take the Basic Biosciences Certificate before applying to the degree program, they are encouraged to apply for graduate nonmatriculated (GNM) status in order to apply up to 12 credits under the GNM status toward the PHARBE degree requirements.
Degree Deadline: November 2
GNM Deadline: December 5 (Winter Quarter)
Questions? Contact Dorian T.Varga, graduate academic counselor, Bioengineering, (206) 685-3494.
How to apply:
- Submit a completed UW Graduate School online application formand application fee of $75. The online application will require you to submit the following:
- A résumé
- A personal statement (no more than two pages) detailing your reasons for applying to the program.
- At least two letters of professional recommendation that address your science, engineering, or business skills and ability to complete an advanced degree. Letters of recommendation from supervisors are preferred and can be submitted electronically by your recommenders as part of the online application process.
- Copies of unofficial transcripts from all institutions attended.
Institutional & Departmental Codes
For the GRE test:
- UW institutional code: 4854
For the TOEFL test:
- UW institutional code: 4854
If you are accepted to the masters program for which you applied, you will be contacted directly by the Graduate School to submit one set of official (unopened) transcripts, directly to the Graduate School from one non-UW institution attended. The Graduate School will randomly select which official transcript needs to be sent for verification purposes. Please do not send or have official transcripts sent to the Department.