University of Vermont

2013-2014 Catalogue

Molecular Physiology and Biophysics (Master of Science)


The department offers a highly flexible program of doctoral study (biophysics track and molecular physiology track) for individuals embarking on a career in biomedical research and teaching. Students can study crucial biological processes using state of the art biophysical techniques in a unique setting. Biological research interest: Cytokinesis and cell division; heart failure, insect flight, and various muscle-dependent processes; structure and function of metabolic enzymes, structural biology and biophysics of contractile and cytoskeletal proteins, structure and function of bacterial adhesins. Biophysical Techniques: cell imaging (time lapse, confocal microscopy), fluorescence spectroscopy, high resolution electron microscopy (3D, single particles, tomography), single molecule detection techniques (optical trap, TIRF, AFM), X-ray crystallography.

General Requirements

Specific Requirements

Requirements for Admission to Graduate Studies for the Master of Science Degree

MPBP usually only accepts students applying for the Ph.D. program. Applicants must demonstrate excellent undergraduate academic performance in physical and biological sciences and satisfactory scores on the general aptitude portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Foreign students must also show good proficiency in the English language (TOEFL). Students with outstanding performance on either physical or biological sciences but lacking the necessary background to successfully fulfill the common core requirements might be accepted. These students will be required to successfully complete the necessary remedial courses (MATH 021 / MATH 022; CHEM 141 / CHEM 142; BCOR 011 / BCOR 012 or MPBP 019 / MPBP 020) during their first year of graduate studies.

Requirements for Advancement to Candidacy for the Degree of Master of Science

Students will be advanced to candidacy if they have successfully completed core course requirements, have performed satisfactorily on their teaching assignments and have favorably completed the departmental comprehensive examination. Students will select a thesis advisor and a thesis committee will be assembled, both approved by the faculty of the department.

Students who are not admitted to candidacy for the doctoral degree will be permitted to complete studies for the master's degree if requirements for that program are met.

Minimum Degree Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science

A minimum of forty-one credits are required to confer the Master of Science Degree with at least eight credits of dissertation research . Molecular Physiology and Biophysics graduate students are required to take a minimum of thirty-one course credits: sixteen fulfilled with the common core courses (MPBP 301, MPBP 303, NSCI 327, MPBP 323; BIOC 301) and the additional fifteen depending on the chosen track, either molecular physiology or biophysics. Elective courses will be determined for each individual after consultation with the Studies Committee. Students should also fulfill their teaching assignments, oral presentation requirements, and successfully complete the comprehensive examination and thesis dissertation.