Program in Biomedical Sciences
Boston University’s Program in Biomedical Sciences (PiBS) provides rigorous training towards a PhD degree by integrating the foundations of interdisciplinary biomedical research with focused investigation and preparation for career advancement. PiBS offers first-year students the opportunity to explore a variety of research areas over the course of three laboratory rotations along with a core curriculum to help determine the direction of their PhD focus.
The degree granting Departments and Programs within PiBS are:
Biochemistry | Biophysics |Genetics & Genomics | Microbiology | Molecular & Translational Medicine | Nutrition & Metabolism | Orofacial & Skeletal Biology | Pathology | Physiology
In addition, students can participate in the Immunology Training Program, ultimately earning their degrees within either Microbiology or Pathology departments.
The Program in Biomedical Sciences begins accepting applications in September. Prospective applicants will create an account with the Boston University Centralized Application System (BU-GMS CAS) completing all personal, academic and supporting document sections. Applicants will be able to select the graduate program(s) of choice within GMS, and will be prompted to complete corresponding program materials in order to submit.
Application opens September 1, 2022, and closes December 1, 2022.
- Completed all requirements for a baccalaureate degree
- Three letters of recommendation
- An unofficial, English transcript of each college or university attended
- Structured personal statement (see below)
- For international applicants
- Submitted transcript and letters of recommendations must be in English. A WES evaluation is not required but is helpful for the review process.
- Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)or IELTS results must be submitted for applicants who received their degrees in a non-English-speaking country. This requirement is waived only if you have received, or expect to receive, an undergraduate or graduate degree from a college or university in any of the following countries prior to enrollment in GMS: the United States of America, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, or Ireland. This waiver does not include undergraduate or graduate degrees earned from an institution in a country listed above while enrolled in a “dual degree” program with an institution in another country. Studying in the medium of English in a country other than the ones previously listed or studying as an exchange student in an English-speaking country without completing a degree program is not sufficient to waive the English proficiency requirement. The minimum score range requirement for TOEFL is 100 with a minimum of 20 in each section. The minimum score range requirement for IELTS is 7.
- See ISSO Website for all forms.
The Admissions Committee will select competitive applicants to interview in late January or February. Decisions are made following the last interview day, and applicants will be alerted by email. Due to privacy regulations, we cannot give decisions over the phone.
NOTE: The Program in Biomedical Sciences does not require that applicants submit GRE scores.
Structured Personal Statement Questions (2022)
Please structure your personal statement to address the following points in separate paragraphs. (Word limit 1000 words, total).
- Describe your motivation to pursue a PhD degree and how PiBS will help you to achieve your goals.
- Describe your research experience(s) to date.
- Describe an example of how you overcame an obstacle or conflict in your personal life and/or your research.
- Describe how you feel diversity of background, experience, collaboration and teamwork have impacted you and/or scientific inquiry as a whole.
Funding for the Ph.D. programs, effective September 2021:
Students receive full tuition coverage, fees, health insurance options, and a $40,000 stipend per year as of September 2022.
In the first year PhD students will participate in the Foundations in Biomedical Sciences (FBS) core curriculum and select elective courses focused on area-specific interests. Additionally, students will experience laboratory rotations and participate in journal clubs and research seminars. Professional development opportunities (see below) round out the curriculum. Students will work closely with a faculty advisor in the development of an individual plan tailored to serve specific research and professional goals. After selection of a laboratory, students will join the program/department with which the mentor is affiliated and continue advanced studies towards candidacy.
Students will identify one lab rotation in the first semester and two lab rotations in the second semester in consultation with their advisors.
Faculty Research Areas
GMS is dedicated to the professional development and mentorship of all our graduate students and postdoctoral trainees. For more information about workshops and career development activities, please visit our Professional Development site. Take note of the host of opportunities available through BU’s BEST (http://www.bu.edu/best/), which is an NIH-funded award dedicated to “Broadening Experiences in Scientific Training”.
Our students also have access to our alumni networking site; enabling them to connect with BU GMS alumni for career advice.
PiBS Student Handbook
Please review the 2022 – 2023 Student Handbook for details on specific policies and procedures regarding academic requirements, lab rotations, qualifying exams, etc.