The BCB PhD program combines didactic training with research and teaching experience to prepare students for a growing number of careers in bioinformatics and computational biology.  There are six required elements described below that together ensure a high standard of scholarship and scientific proficiency.  It is expected that all students will complete these requirements within five years.

PhD requirements at a glance:

Year 1

  • 6 BCB Core Modules
  • 1 or 2 Foundational/Elective Courses (3 credits each) *Note that three 1 credit modules may count as 1 elective course.
  • BCB Colloquium (2 semesters)
  • 3 Laboratory Rotations (arranged through BBSP)
  • Written Qualifying Exam (*may be postponed to Year 2 with permission if Core Modules not complete)

Year 2

  • 2 or 3 Elective Courses (3 credits each or a combination of modules totaling 3 credit hours for each course credit)
  • Any of the Core Modules not completed in Year 1
  • BCB Colloquium (2 semesters)
  • Select Thesis Advisor and Committee (Must be approved by BCB Director.)
  • Initial Committee Meeting
  • Work with Advisor to create Individual Development Plan (IDP) by the end of Year 2. This should be filed with the Curriculum Office.

Years 3-5

  • Oral Qualifying Exam (Must be completed before the end of Year 3)
  • Annual Committee Meetings (Minimum every 12 months.)
  • Any additional 3 Credit Elective Courses necessary to bring the total number of electives taken to 4.
  • Review Individual Development Plan (IDP) annually with Advisor.  Updates filed with the Curriculum Office.
  • BCB Colloquium presentation during final year at UNC
  • Thesis Research
  • 1st Author Publication (s)
  • Dissertation and Oral Defense