MS With PhD in Molecular And Cellular Biology (MCB)

Prepare for a career conducting interdisciplinary research and translating your findings in the laboratory to clinical and population-based settings. Our concurrent Epi MS/MCB PhD degree program trains basic scientists in modern epidemiological research methods. The curricular and research activities required in the program will provide you with the skills and knowledge necessary to position you for translational science-oriented post-doctoral positions and eventually a leadership role at an academic research institution or in industry.

The required courses for the MCB PhD and Epi MS programs are available on the respective program websites. The primary differences between the concurrent degree program curriculum and the curriculum of students who are enrolled only in the MCB PhD or the Epi MS are as follows:

  • Years 2 through 5 of the typical MCB PhD coursework are shifted to Years 3 through 6, with Year 2 devoted to fulfilling the Epidemiology MS requirements. This will delay the General Exam for the MCB PhD program by one year.
  • The Epi MS requirements are expected to be completed in 4 quarters as opposed to 7-8 quarters typically allowed.
  • Certain required MCB courses with significant public health content become unspecified (not EPI or SPH) electives for the Epi MS requirements, and vice-versa.
  • The thesis and dissertation projects, respectively, for the Epi MS and MCB PhD are expected to include population and basic science components.
  • The thesis and dissertation chairs, respectively, for the Epi MS and MCB PhD must be approved by the Program Director: Stephen M. Schwartz, PhD (
  •  The thesis and dissertation committees, respectively, for the Epi MS and MCB PhD are expected to include a faculty member from the other discipline. For example, The MCB PhD committee would include an Epidemiology faculty member with appropriate expertise.

You will be permitted to count 12 credits toward both the Epi MS and MCB PhD. The specific recommended courses to be counted towards both programs will be decided by the program directors.