Master of Science in Microbiology and Immunology

Major: MBIO
Degree Awarded: MS
Unit: GM
Program Webpage: http://louisville.edu/medschool/microbiology/

Program Information

The Department of Microbiology and Immunology, in the School of Medicine, offers a program of study leading to the degree of master of science. The M.S. program can be completed in one of two course concentrations, either thesis or non-thesis. The M.S. program includes training in a broad range of research areas using state-of-the-art immunological, microbiological, and molecular technologies.

Program Admission Procedure

For admission to the M.S. program, the applicant must have attained a B.S or B.A. degree with a minimum grade-point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 point scale). All applicants accepted into the master's program must be self-supporting, as financial assistance is not available. In addition, the following should be submitted online directly to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies, graduate admissions: http://louisville.edu/graduate/apply/:

  • A completed application form and $60 application fee
  • Official scores of the general test section of the Graduate Record Examination and the TOEFL (when applicable)
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • A brief statement of purpose describing interests and career goals
  • A current resume or curriculum vitae
  • A letter of scientific support from a Department of Microbiology and Immunology faculty member (faculty agreement to mentor student in lab - thesis concentration)
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate course work(mailed to the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies, graduate admissions)

The applicant must meet the other general requirements of the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies as outlined in the general information section of this catalog. The application deadline is March 1st each year. Submission prior to March 1 is strongly encouraged in order to ensure that all required materials (especially letters of reference) are received by the deadline. The applicant is expected to have completed the following undergraduate courses prior to admission to the graduate program: one year of introductory biology, one year of organic chemistry, one year of physics, one semester (or equivalent ) of introductory calculus, and one semester of biochemistry.

Prospective students may be invited for a personal interview with members of the admissions committee and departmental faculty as part of the application process.

Curriculum

MS Thesis

Course # Course Description
Credit Hours
Requirements
MBIO 601 Molecular Microbiology
2
-or-MBIO 602 Immunology
3
MBIO 610 Methods and Analysis in the Biomedical Sciences
2
MBIO 606 Seminar
1
BIOC 645 Advanced Biochemistry I
4
BIOC 667 Cell Biology
3
BIOC 603 03 Special Topics in Biochemistry: BMG Statistics
2
BIOC 630 Responsible Conduct of Research: Survival Skills and Research Ethics
1
MBIO 619 Research
10-11
MBIO 620 Thesis
1
ElectivesSelect two courses (≥ 2 credit hours) from the list of suggested electives
4-8
MBIO 601 Molecular Microbiology*
2
MBIO 602 Immunology*
3
MBIO 621 Advanced Immunology: Innate and Adaptive Immunity
2
MBIO 622 Advanced Immunology of Disease
2
MBIO 689 Microbiota in Health and Disease
2
MBIO 687 Microbial Pathogenesis
2
Minimum Total Credit Hours
30

Notes:
* If MBIO 601 is taken as a "Required Course" then MBIO 602 can be taken as an elective. Likewise, if MBIO 602 is taken as a "Required Course" then MBIO 601 can be taken as an elective.
**Additional courses outside of the department can be taken as electives in consultation with the research advisor and director of graduate studies.

Program of Study

Research Advisor and Project

Students in the M.S. thesis program are required to obtain a research advisor before being admitted to the program. Students should form a thesis committee and decide upon a research project early in the second semester of graduate study. The student, in consultation with her/his advisor, should form a thesis committee of at least three (3) faculty members. The thesis committee will consist of two graduate faculty members with primary appointments in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and a third graduate faculty member with primary status in another department. One of the two faculty members with primary appointments in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology will serve as co-advisor, if the research advisor does not have a primary appointment in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. The thesis committee may consist of more than three faculty members; however a majority of the faculty on the thesis committee must have primary appointments in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. Selection of the research advisor and formation of the thesis committee must be approved by the graduate school dean.

Evaluation of Student's Progress

The thesis committee will meet at least annually to evaluate the student's progress. Students are expected to maintain satisfactory progress in his/her research project each semester. Students may proceed to degree candidacy provided they have successfully maintained an overall and program GPA of 3.0 or higher (with a grade no lower than a B- in any MBIO course), pass grades in all required courses with pass/fail grading, and successful completion of all required coursework. It is anticipated the student will complete the degree program at the end of the second year of study.

Master's Thesis Examination

Students are required to write and defend a master's thesis. The thesis must be a work of sufficient quality to demonstrate the student's ability to participate effectively on a research project. Following preliminary review and approval by the research advisor, the thesis should be distributed to the thesis committee members, and a written request submitted to the graduate school dean, at least two weeks prior to the scheduled date of the final oral exam. The final oral defense/exam will be preceded by a research seminar open to all graduate faculty members, students and other interested persons. The oral exam will be administered by the thesis committee. A signed unbound copy of the thesis must be delivered to the graduate school by the published deadline date. To satisfactorily pass the thesis defense, a majority of the committee members must approve it. Guidelines and requirements concerning the thesis and final oral examination are set forth in the programs and publications section of the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies website.

MS Non-Thesis

Course # Course Description
Credit Hours
Requirements
MBIO 601 Molecular Microbiology
2
-or-MBIO 602 Immunology
3
MBIO 606 Seminar (Fall and Spring - 1 Credit Hour each semester)
1
BIOC 645 Advanced Biochemistry I
4
BIOC 667 Cell Biology
3
Electives Select two courses( 2 credit hours) from the list of suggested electives
18
MBIO 601 Molecular Microbiology*
2
MBIO 602 Immunology*
3
MBIO 604 General Virology
1
MBIO 610 Methods and Analysis in the Biomedical Sciences
2
MBIO 619 Research
1-11
MBIO 621 Advanced Immunology: Innate and Adaptive Immunity
2
MBIO 622 Advanced Immunology of Disease
2
MBIO 689 Microbiota in Health and Disease
2
MBIO 687 Microbial Pathogenesis
2
BIOC 603 03 Special Topics in Biochemistry: BMG Statistics
2
BIOC 630 Responsible Conduct of Research: Survival Skills and Research Ethics
1
Minimum Total Credit Hours30

Notes:
* If MBIO 601 is taken as a "Required Course" then MBIO 602 can be taken as an elective. Likewise, if MBIO 602 is taken as a "Required Course" then MBIO 601 can be taken as an elective.
**Additional courses outside of the department can be taken as electives in consultation with the research advisor and graduate program director.

Program of Study

Evaluation of Student's Progress

Students will meet with the associate director of graduate studies at the conclusion of the Year 1 Fall and Year 1 Spring semesters. Students are required to identify a faculty advisor by completion of Year 1. The faculty advisor will provide mentorship through completion of the Program, in particular, completion of the master’s final oral examination. Students are expected to maintain satisfactory progress in her/his coursework. Students may proceed to degree candidacy provided they have successfully maintained an overall and program GPA of 3.0 or higher (with a grade no lower than a B- in any MBIO course), Pass grades in all required courses with Pass/Fail grading, and successful completion of all required coursework.

Master's Final Oral Examination

Students are required to write either a literature-based research proposal or a literature review and orally defend it to their master’s final examination committee. The decision to write a research proposal or literature review will be made between the student and their faculty advisor. The Department of Microbiology and Immunology curriculum committee chair will name the master’s final examination committee, which will be comprised of at least three graduate faculty members with at least two members with primary appointments in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology. To satisfactorily pass the master’s final exam, a majority of the committee members must approve.

Faculty

Yousef Abu Kwaik

Professor

Pascale Alard

Associate Professor

Haribabu Bodduluri

Professor

Carolyn Casella

Assistant Professor

Donghoon Chung

Associate Professor

Nejat Egilmez
Professor

Chair

James E. Graham

Associate Professor

Venkatakrishna R. Jala

Assistant Professor

Michele M. Kosiewicz

Associate Professor

Matthew Lawrenz

Associate Professor

Bing Li

Associate Professor

Richard D. Miller

Associate Professor

Thomas C. Mitchell

Professor

Carolyn Roberson

Assistant Professor

Russell D. Salter

Professor

Nathan Schmidt
Assistant Professor

Director of Graduate Studies

Haval Shirwan

Professor

Kevin Sokoloski

Assistant Professor

Jonathan Warawa

Associate Professor

Esma Yolcu

Associate Professor

Huang-Ge Zhang

Professor