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Southern Illinois University School of Medicine
Department of Pharmacology

Graduate Program in Pharmacology and Neuroscience

    The Graduate Program provides course work and research opportunities leading to the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees.  The program consists of formal course work in pharmacology and related fields, research, teaching experience, presentations at professional meetings and publication of research.  The objective of the program is to provide a thorough understanding of basic pharmacology which may be used for a career of independent research and teaching in pharmacology for academic institutions, industrial laboratories or government research and administrative agencies.  Students may choose from a variety of specializations when picking a research advisor and a research topic.  Specific information detailing the research interests and objectives for each faculty is indicated in the faculty listings of this site.  Students must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate School and the Pharmacology Graduate Program to receive an advanced degree in pharmacology.  Students entering the pharmacology graduate training program are required to have a strong background in physiology and biochemistry.  During the first year advanced course work in pharmacology and related areas is accomplished.  In addition, the student, in collaboration with the advisor, formulates a research project and selects a Thesis or Dissertation Committee, which provides guidance of the project.  After successful completion of the Written Comprehensive Examination taken in October of the second year in Springfield, the student submits a research proposal for Thesis/Dissertation work and defends it in an oral examination conducted by the Thesis or Dissertation Committee.  Before final admission to candidacy, tool requirements and fulfillment of residency requirements (24 credit hours) must be accomplished.  After all other requirements for the degree are satisfied, the Final Oral exam is taken.  This exam consists of a seminar which describes the thesis or dissertation work and a formal review conducted by the Thesis or Dissertation Committee. Completion of an M.S. degree typically takes two years, while the Ph.D. degree takes four to five years.

More Information Regarding Graduate Student Research Requirements >

    The Department of Pharmacology offers Graduate Assistantships at 50% full time equivalent at the rate of $20,256 per year (April, 2013).  According to, an individual living in Chicago, Illinois would have to make approximately $32,342 per year to have the purchasing power of $19,056 per year in Springfield. also indicates that the median home price in Springfield, IL is 51% of the national average.

Each applicant must submit directly to the Department of Pharmacology:

  1. A check or money order in the amount of $50.00, made payable to SIU School of Medicine. In general, the Department of Pharmacology accepts new applicants into its graduate program at the beginning of every other fall semester (odd-numbered years, i.e., 2013, 2015, 2017). Please be aware that the $50.00 application fee is non-refundable. We will keep your application documents on file until the next normal fall review and acceptance period (2013, 2015, 2017), or it will be considered separately should there be an available fellowship or if department faculty express interest in hiring outside of the normal cycle.
  2. Original official transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate coursework, sent directly from each university or college attended by the applicant.
  3. Career Statement (250 words or less) describing the career path that you hope to pursue upon completion of our graduate program. Please include a statement with reference to where you see yourself in 10 years.
  4. Statement of Area of Interest (250 words). After reviewing our faculty website, please identify 2 or 3 faculty members whose research interests are most aligned with yours and give specific reasons why you are interested in these labs.
  5. Scores of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) sent directly from the testing agency.
  6. Three letters of recommendation from faculty who know the applicant's potential.
  7. International Students must request a copy of the TOEFL scores to be sent directly from the testing agency.
  8. A resume or curriculum vitae.
All of the above documents should be mailed to the following address:
Pharmacology Graduate Program
SIU School of Medicine
PO Box 19629
Springfield, IL, USA

A prerequisite to admission to the Department of Pharmacology's Graduate Program is approval from the Graduate School of Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Illinois. You must apply to the Southern Illinois University Graduate Program and are encouraged to do so online, using the following link:


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Last Updated October 24, 2013
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