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The doctoral program in Cell and Molecular Biology aims to provide the best training to students for their careers as research scientists in Cell and Molecular Biology. It provides students with the opportunity to develop their capacity for scholarly and independent work, critical analytical thinking, and the ability to communicate knowledge and ideas. It is intended to produce scientists who will make significant original contributions to the biological sciences.
The program exposes students to theoretical foundations and practical training in current laboratory techniques. It serves the AUB mission by providing Lebanon and the region with qualified researchers for and preparing students for careers in research, teaching, and public service.
The program requirements for BS holders consist of a minimum of 36 credit hours of graduate level course work and a minimum of 42 credit hours of thesis work. The requirements for MS holders are a minimum of 18 credit hours of graduate level course work in addition to 30 credit hours of thesis work.
Upon admission into the program, each student will be assisted by the department head who will act as an academic advisor and help the student in the selection of courses. Each student’s course of study is designed individually, in light of her/his interests and career goals. All duties of the head are transferred to the thesis advisor once selected.
The program incorporates the existing master’s program and consists of core courses that address basic principles of cell and protein function, gene expression, bioinformatics and biostatistics.
Elective courses are taken to meet the credit requirements and to emphasize the student’s research work and field of specialty. These courses may be chosen from the Biology Department, graduate course offerings, or from course offerings of other departments that fall within the student’s field of interest and scope of the program.
During the first year of study, students may take the laboratory rotation course (BIOL 494), conducting research in two different faculty laboratories within the Biology Department or the University. The department considers exposure to different research environments an essential part of training. Students entering with only a BS must also register for an additional 2 or 3 credit laboratory tutorial in their first year.
Admission to the program will be on a competitive basis. To be eligible for admission, applicants should have a good academic record, demonstrate genuine interest in Cell and Molecular Biology research, and must:
• hold a bachelor’s (BS) or master’s (MS) degree in Biological Sciences or related fields from a recognized institution;
• present three letters of recommendation from previous tutors or employers;
• submit scores from the general Graduate Record Examination (GRE). This exam is required by both BS and MS holders;
• meet English Language Proficiency Requirements
• present a statement of purpose;
• be interviewed by a select group of department faculty members. The faculty members may require the student to give a seminar presentation;
• be recommended for admission by the Biology Department.
The department offers, on a selective basis, substantial support which fully covers tuition and includes a monthly stipend. There are also some funds available to support participation in international conferences; these funds are awarded on a competitive basis. In return, students are expected to help in teaching undergraduate labs, with presentations of introductory courses, and in proctoring and correcting exams.