Surgery Education - Surgical Resident PhD in Physiology
Program Overview: The transfer of information derived from research in the basic sciences, to the medical world where this new knowledge is used in the treatment of human disease, is facilitated by physician-scientists that can function at the interface between the bench and the bedside. To this end, the Departments of Surgery and Physiology at UTHSCSA have developed a PhD Program for Surgical Residents. Candidates in this PhD program dedicate a majority of their time carrying out a rigorous thesis project in a research laboratory that is either in, or affiliated with, the Department of Physiology. It is anticipated that this three-year program will provide the physician with the tools and the experience necessary to direct a successful independent research program.
Admission: Surgical residents wishing to pursue a Ph.D. in Physiology may apply for admission directly to the Physiology COGS for admission as an advanced student and proceed directly into second year coursework. Students will be considered using current Ph.D. admissions standards. MCAT scores may be substituted for GRE scores, as long as the MCAT score is a minimum of 25 and approved by COGS.
Rotations: At the time of admission to the program, residents may rotate according to an abbreviated rotation schedule of available graduate faculty. Residents who are already in a laboratory may remain upon approval by COGS. Mentors must be members of the graduate faculty.
Coursework: Coursework is determined in consultation between the student, mentor, and COGS. Credit will be given for appropriate basic science courses. The combination of course material credit and earned credit hours must add up to 72 hours to award a Ph.D. degree according to the rules of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. We anticipate students will take further courses consisting mainly of advanced topics and selected readings.
Thesis: Residents must follow all preset rules and standards for Ph.D. students listed in the Graduate Program Handbook, and must take oral exams and provide and defend a thesis proposal. Once a thesis committee is established, they will meet every six months, at a minimum, to ensure smooth progression. Semi-Annual progress reports from both the student and supervising committee must be submitted to COGS according to the handbook.
Time frame: We expect that by placing out of most basic coursework and having strong oversight by a thesis committee, students will be able to finish this Ph.D. program in 3 years.
All other rules of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and the Department of Physiology Handbook apply to the students once they are part of this program.