Universtiy of Miami Miller School of Medicine Graduate and Postdoctoral Programs

Curriculum: Executive PhD

Overview of the Executive PhD program

  • Admissions Application Review
  • Verification of Financial and Scholarly Support from your Place of Employment
  • Orientation for Admitted Students
  • Selection of Mentor and Dissertation Committee
  • Coursework (16 credits in first year)
  • Bi-weekly meetings with mentor to evaluate research progress
  • Qualifying Exam (second year)
  • Progress Meetings with Dissertation Committee (each 6 months)
  • Dissertation Sufficiency Meeting (after completion of 44 research credits)
  • PhD Defense (after completion of 60 research credits)

Didactic Phase

For the didactic phase of graduate training, students will participate in a set of courses chosen based on their prior experience and the research they perform in their industrial setting. Through these courses, the students obtain a broad, coherent background in basic and advanced aspects of biochemistry, molecular biology, structural biology, and cell biology. This material is supplemented with presentations at research journal clubs.

  • BMB 701 – Journal Club – 1 credit each semester – total 4 Credits
  • BMB 709 – Advanced Biochemistry & Molecular Biology – 3 Credits
  • BMB 710 – Advanced Topics in Biochemistry – 3 Credits
  • BMB 714 – Molecular Genetics – 2 Credits
  • BMB 715 – Structural Biology and Applications to Drug Discovery – 2 Credits
  • BMB 716 – Analysis and Prediction of Gene Regulation and Protein Function – 2 Credits
  • BMB 731 – Special Work
  • BMB 830 – Doctoral Dissertation
  • BMB 840 – Doctoral Dissertation
  • BMB 850 – Research in Residence

Participation in Research Work

The students will perform research at the institution where they are employed. They will have a co-mentor at their work places and a PhD dissertation mentor from the BMB department. This mentor selection will be based on the research interests of the student.


During August of every year, the BMB Department will host a research forum/mini-symposium in which all the Executive PhD Program students will participate and present their research in the form of a poster or oral presentation. All executive students are required to be present in Miami.

Distance Learning Platform

The courses in the program will be taught through the distance learning platform, Blackboard. The lectures will be streamed through Skype or Blackboard collaborative technology. Recorded lectures are also used.

Discussion Boards

Discussion boards will be hosted through Blackboard and will be moderated by teaching assistants. The discussion board will allow students to participate and ask questions.


Assignments are posted in the online classroom in Blackboard. Student a responsible for contacting their instructor if they have questions regarding an assignment.

Graduation Requirements for Executive BMB PhD Program

The requirements for graduation include the following:

  • Successful completion of 16 credit hours of required didactic courses at the graduate levels.
  • Successful completion of the Qualifying Examination
  • Execution of an original research project facilitated by a dissertation committee that attests to research sufficiency (minimum 44 credit hours)
  • Maximum of 12 credit hours for the fall and spring semesters and 3 credit hours for the summer semester
  • Minimum of 6 semesters in the program prior to sufficiency
  • Submission and defense of a doctoral dissertation. Students a required to submit the dissertation document within four months after sufficiency.