The goal of the PhD program in Medical Biophysics (MBPH) is to train the next generation of structural biologists and biophysicists to a) be very familiar with the basic chemical and physical principles important in every living organism, b) be proficient with the theoretical and practical aspects of the of important experimental and theoretical biophysical methods, c) to be able to apply these methods to answer fundamental biomedical questions and d) to become responsible investigators eager to translate their findings. The program includes all aspects of biophysics, with an emphasis on structural biology and on application of biophysical methods and theories to answer important biomedical questions.
The MBPH program is an inter-campus program that includes faculty from all over USC who not only have active biophysical research programs and serve as mentors, but also contribute to courses offered by the program. In addition, a monthly biophysics seminar series with presentations from USC and outside faculty will expose the students to current biophysical research. As the result, the MBPH program will teach a comprehensive overview about all aspects of biophysics including hands-on training in many biophysical methods. Consequently, students will obtain practical and theoretical knowledge as well as the necessary overview to be able to complete a successful thesis.
Medical Biophysics students are required to complete one of the following courses: BIOC 522, CHEM 521, CHEM 488, CHEM 544, CHEM 565L, CHEM 625, PHBI 650, PHBI 651, PSCI 557, PSCI 664, PSCI 665 or other courses approved by the faculty adviser program directors. In the second and subsequent years, students are required to register in INTD 600 every fall and spring semester. In addition, students are required to complete at least 4 units of MBPH 794a Doctoral Dissertation, MBPH 794b Doctoral Dissertation.
PhD students must supplement coursework by registering for MBPH 790 Research during the fall, spring and summer semesters as needed to complete the minimum 60 units required for the PhD program.
As part of the requirements for the PhD degree in Medical Biophysics, students must adhere to the unit/course requirements, guidance committee and dissertation committee guidelines and must complete the qualifying examination, annual research appraisal and dissertation with oral defense as outlined in the PhD Programs in Biomedical and Biological Sciences section of the catalogue.