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Graduates of the PharmD/PhD program are well prepared to address the greatest challenges and opportunities in biomedical research.
The objective of the joint program is to train students for careers in academic pharmacy and bench science research. Students admitted to this joint program participate in the PharmD curriculum and pursue original doctoral research projects in the laboratories of the university’s graduate faculty in either the Department of Medicinal Chemistry & Pharmacognosy OR Biopharmaceutical Sciences. The joint program offers the potential of reducing the time of earning both degrees in sequence (9 or more years) by approximately two years by counting some requirements toward the completion of both degrees. The trade-off is that both degrees are awarded at the end of the training period and neither degree can be received before the other is completed.
The PharmD/PhD program is for exceptional, highly motivated and achieving students ready to meet the challenge of increased academic load and independent research project. Visit PharmD/PhD Students page to see what our current students are working on.
Admission Requirements and Application Process
Students may apply to the joint PharmD/PhD degree program at the same time as when applying to the PharmD program or within the first two years after their acceptance into the PharmD program. Students must be accepted by both programs. Please note: the PharmD/PhD program is not offered in the Department of Pharmacy Systems, Outcomes, and Policies.
Minimum requirements for admission include:
- a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university
- a GRE score
Application has 3 components:
- Submit application to PharmD program via PharmCAS and indicate your interest in the joint degree.
- Submit the Supplemental Application (PSTP form) via e-mail to PharmDPhD@uic.edu.
- Submit application to the PhD program (Medicinal Chemistry & Pharmacognosy OR Biopharmaceutical Sciences) following the program's specific guidelines.
Apply for the joint degree after acceptance to PharmD
- Submit the Supplemental Application (PSTP form) via e-mail to PharmDPhD@uic.edu
- Submit an application to one of the College of Pharmacy’s PhD programs (Medicinal Chemistry & Pharmacognosy OR Biopharmaceutical Sciences) during your first two years of enrollment in the PharmD.
- If you are accepted by the PhD program and have a baccalaureate degree, you will be accepted to the joint program immediately. Contact PharmDPhD@uic.edu to notify the College of your acceptance into the PhD program.
- Students without a baccalaureate degree will need to accumulate 120 credit hours before they will be formally accepted into the joint degree program.
Students admitted to the joint program can begin requirements for both degrees upon admission. Summers can be used for research and laboratory rotations. The first two to three years of the program are used to complete the P-1 through P-3 didactic PharmD curriculum with some PhD courses as electives. Choice of a permanent thesis advisor can take place at any point before moving to the graduate focused years (G-1 through G-3). Following completion of the PhD phase of the program, students rejoin other PharmD students to complete PharmD didactic and/or clerkship requirements.
The program is flexible and actual timeline will depend on the requirements of the specific PhD program and the PhD thesis advisor. Sample timelines used by our current PharmD/PhD students are below ("P" refers to PharmD portions of the joint degree program, "G" refers to graduate segments of the joint program. The numbers indicate years spent in each segment. However, it should be understood that some research will be going on in years labeled as "P".)
Students enrolled in the joint degree program are eligible for the graduate level tuition for the PharmD portion of their study, which results in significant cost reduction. You may compare the cost of professional and graduate tuition and fees at the Office of the Registrar website. Additional financial benefits may apply. When a student becomes a full-time graduate student, student may receive a tuition waiver and a stipend.
Lindsey McQuade, PhD
Director, Research & Graduate Resources