PhD in Medicinal Chemistry

Admission Requirements

In addition to the Graduate College minimum requirements, applicants must meet the following program requirements:

  • Baccalaureate Field Pharmacy, chemistry, or the biological sciences. Prior academic work should include a year each of biology or biochemistry and organic chemistry. (Note: No financial support is offered to applicants to the MS program.)
  • Grade Point Average At least 3.00/4.00 for the final 60 semester (90 quarter) hours of baccalaureate study.
  • Tests Required GRE General. The GRE Advanced Chemistry or Biology test is recommended.
  • Minimum English Competency Test Score
    • TOEFL 80, with subscores of Reading 19, Listening 17, Speaking 20, and Writing 21 (iBT Internet-based); 60, with subscores of Reading 19, Listening 17, Writing 21 (New Paper-Based—after August 2018); 550 (Institutional Testing Paper-Based—prior to August 2018), OR,
    • IELTS 6.5, with subscores of 6.0 for all four subscores, OR,
    • PTE-Academic 54, with subscores of Reading 51, Listening 47, Speaking 53, and Writing 56.
  • Letters of Recommendation Three required.
  • Personal Statement Required.

Degree Requirements

  • Minimum Semester Hours Required 96 from the baccalaureate.
  • Course Work
Course Title
Required Core Courses
Biochemistry
Principles of Medicinal Chemistry
Research Techniques in Medicinal Chemistry (4 hours)
Seminar in Medicinal Chemistry (1-hour literature seminar and 1-hour thesis seminar)
Required concentration and elective courses (minimum of 11 additional hours)
  • Students must select one of five concentrations:
  • Analytical and Chemical Toxicology
  • Biomedicinal Chemistry
  • Computational Medicinal Chemistry
  • Structural Biology
  • Synthetic Medicinal Chemistry

Analytical and Chemical Toxicology Concentration

Course Title
Required Concentration Courses
Pharmaceutical Applications of Genomics and Bioinformatics
Spectroscopy in Medicinal Chemistry
Organic Medicinal Chemistry II
Course Title
Recommended Electives
These courses are to be selected in consultation with the thesis supervisor and director of graduate studies.
Biochemistry
Pharmaceutical Applications of Genomics and Bioinformatics
Spectroscopy in Medicinal Chemistry
Drug Design
Practical Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
Special Topics in Medicinal Chemistry
Principles of Toxicology

Biomedicinal Chemistry Concentration

Course Title
Required Concentration Courses
Molecular Biology
Pharmaceutical Applications of Genomics and Bioinformatics
Course Title
Recommended Electives
These courses are to be selected in consultation with thesis supervisor and director of graduate studies.
Biochemistry
Molecular Biology
Principles of Structure Determination and Analysis
Biochemistry of Cellular Regulation
Principles of Molecular Medicine
Cell Biology
Research Methods I
Research Methods II
Pharmaceutical Applications of Genomics and Bioinformatics
Spectroscopy in Medicinal Chemistry
Drug Design
Special Topics in Medicinal Chemistry
Molecular Aspects of Microbiology

Computational Medicinal Chemistry Concentration

Course Title
Required Concentration Courses
Drug Design
Course Title
Recommended Electives
These courses are to be selected in consultation with thesis supervisor and director of graduate studies.
Biochemistry
Drug Design
Principles of Structure Determination and Analysis
Biostatistics I
Quantum Mechanics
Biophysical Chemistry
Neural Networks
Fuzzy Logic
Molecular Biology

Structural Biology Concentration

Course Title
Required Concentration Courses
Principles of Structure Determination and Analysis
Physical Medicinal Chemistry
Course Title
Recommended Electives
These courses are to be selected in consultation with thesis supervisor and director of graduate studies.
Principles of Structure Determination and Analysis
Biochemistry
Chemical Biology
Bioinorganic Chemistry
Biophysical Chemistry
Molecular Biology
Spectroscopy in Medicinal Chemistry
Organic Medicinal Chemistry II
Drug Design
Special Topics in Medicinal Chemistry

Synthetic Medicinal Chemistry Concentration

Course Title
Required Concentration Courses
Organic Medicinal Chemistry I
Spectroscopy in Medicinal Chemistry
Physical Medicinal Chemistry
Organic Medicinal Chemistry II
Principles of Stereochemistry
Course Title
Recommended Electives
These courses are to be selected in consultation with thesis supervisor and director of graduate studies.
Spectroscopy in Medicinal Chemistry
Physical Medicinal Chemistry
Drug Design
Principles of Stereochemistry
Special Topics in Medicinal Chemistry
Biochemistry
Advanced Organic Chemistry I
Advanced Organic Chemistry II
Advanced Synthetic Chemistry
Chemical Biology
  • Examinations
    • Departmental Qualifying and Preliminary Examination: Required. Passing this examination permits doctoral students to bypass the formal requirement of writing a master’s thesis. Good academic standing required for eligibility to take the examination. The exam is given following completion of the second semester of required course work. The exam should be taken no later than the spring semester of the second year. Students who did not pass the exam will be given an option to graduate with Master of Science degree in Medicinal Chemistry.
  • Dissertation Required; including oral defense.
  • Other Requirements All candidates must assist in teaching one or more of the courses offered by the College of Pharmacy or the department. Minimum of 70 semester hours of MDCH 599.

Students applying to the department are encouraged to check the website for program updates.