Apr 13, 2024  
USC Catalogue 2022-2023 
USC Catalogue 2022-2023 [ARCHIVED CATALOGUE]

Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine (MS)

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs by School

The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine (BMM) offers a program for the Master of Science degree. Primary goals of the program are to train students in preparation for (1) further doctoral study, and (2) research careers in industry and academia. Students are provided the necessary theoretical foundation in biochemistry and molecular biology, traditional and state-of-the-art methods used for research, experimental design, applied data science and bioinformatics. They are trained in conducting laboratory research on a defined project, oral presentations of the results and writing a thesis defending their project. The program is designed to enable high-achieving students from other STEM fields such as chemistry or pharmacy to broaden their education and/or research experience to biological sciences. The program, with its rigorous curriculum, is designed to simultaneously challenge students with prior education in biology. 

The prerequisites for applicants to the BMM MS Program are a Bachelor’s degree with an undergraduate major in any STEM field. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required and a GPA of 3.0 in STEM courses is preferred. In most cases, international applicants must demonstrate satisfactory English proficiency with a minimum TOEFL score of 90 or an IETLS score of 7. Applicants that do not meet all the criteria above may be considered in special circumstances. At least three letters of recommendation are required from faculty members and/or employers who can evaluate the applicant’s potential for graduate work and independent research.

The MS degree in BMM is a two-year program that requires 34 units of graduate study. Master’s students must take a set of required courses, as well as perform laboratory research and write a research thesis under the guidance of a USC faculty mentor. Students must complete 16 or more course units offered in the BMM Department; the majority of the remaining units are taken as research or dissertation units. The student must successfully defend the thesis as determined by the student’s Thesis Committee. Flexibility exists to plan each student’s curriculum to suit individual needs, ambitions and background.


Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Programs by School