M.S. Program

General Information

These guidelines represent the policies of the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology regarding the Masters (M.S.) program. The graduate program of the Department is administered by a Graduate Committee consisting of the Graduate Program Directors, additional faculty members elected by the faculty, and a doctoral candidate selected by the graduate students. This committee is responsible for reviewing the progress of the students and recommending changes in the Masters program for approval by the faculty. In addition, the Department Chairman, the Graduate Committee, and all members of the faculty are available to assist students in their progress towards successful completion of the M.S. degree (see program plan schedule). Additional guidelines from the Graduate School Catalog should also be reviewed.

Each student is expected to read and be familiar with all of the policies and requirements outlined herein. These guidelines are not meant to supersede the academic policies of the University as outlined in the Graduate School Catalog. Students are expected to familiarize themselves with the Graduate School Catalog, the policies on academic standing, the statement of student ethics, and the requirements for obtaining graduate degrees at the University of Louisville.

    Student Honor Code

    Students enrolled in the Pharmacology and Toxicology graduate programs at the University of Louisville are required to affirm that they have read, understand, and will abide by the Code of Student Rights and Responsibilitiesof the University of Louisville as published in the Student Handbook.

    Research Advisor

    As indicated above, as soon as possible, but no later than the end of the first semester, each student must select (or be assigned) a Research Advisor with whom the student will conduct their laboratory or academic research project. Early selection of the advisor and research project will permit the student to complete sufficient work to obtain the Masters degree within the usual two-year period. Although this advisor will normally be the faculty member with whom the student completes the M.S. degree, if it is decided by either the student or the advisor that a change of advisors is desirable, then the student has the option of selecting a new research advisor, with the approval of the Graduate Committee, although this may delay achieving the M.S. degree within the expected two-year period.

    Once an advisor has been selected and the research project is underway, the advisor in consultation with the student will submit to the Graduate Committee the names of three faculty members willing to serve on the student’s Thesis Committee. Since this committee must approve the student’s research project, this committee should be appointed as soon as possible.

    Seminars and Research Conferences

    All students are expected to attend departmental seminars, research conferences and journal clubs and will register for 5280-606 (Pharmacology Seminar, one-hour credit) each semester. All students are expected to participate actively in the discussion following each seminar. Students will receive a grade at the end of the year based both on their attendance and participation.

    Evaluation of Student’s Progress toward the M.S. Degree

    At the end of every semester, the progress of each Masters student will be evaluated by the departmental faculty. Students are expected to maintain a GPA of 3.0, have actively participated in department activities and seminars, and to have demonstrated satisfactory progress on their research project each semester. Students who receive a grade of C or below in two or more courses will be considered for dismissal.

    Master’s Thesis

    Each student in the M.S. Program will be required to write and defend a Master’s Thesis. The thesis must be a work of sufficient quality to convince the Thesis Committee that the student possesses the ability to either participate actively in a laboratory environment or to contribute significantly as an academician in the broad discipline of pharmacology and toxicology. Each student must present and defend their Masters Thesis at an oral thesis defense. To satisfactorily pass the thesis defense, a student may not receive more than one unfavorable vote from a member of the Thesis Committee.

    For Further Information or Questions


    Checklist for Application

    • Application forms
    • Application fee
    • Transcripts
    • Statement of experience and professional goals.
    • Letters of Recommendation [3]
    • International students only
      • Test Score - Test of English as a Foreign Language [TOEFL]
      • Verbatim notarized English translations of all academic records and credentials.
      • A certified and officially translated transcript (by ECE or WES).
      • International Financial Supplement Form (If on a Visa that requires an I-20 or IAP-66)

    Application Forms

    • All candidates for admission to graduate programs at the University of Louisville must complete the graduate student application form. This may be completed online or may be submitted via mail to:

    Graduate Admissions
    105 Houchens Building
    University of Louisville
    Louisville, KY 40292
    United States of America

    • Applications are received at any time for starting dates of approximately August 1.
    • All credentials and/or communications should be submitted to the Office of Admissions should contain the student's full name and Social Security Number or UofL-issued Student ID. Lack of Social Security Number may cause processing to be delayed.
    • For best consideration, the preferred application deadline is January 1 for admission in August.
    • Admission on a conditional basis is a possibility in rare, special cases, even though application materials are incomplete. Please contact the department for additional information.

    Application Fee

    A $60.00 US currency non-refundable application fee is required with the application form. An application will not be forwarded to the department until this fee is paid. Check or money order should be made payable to the "University of Louisville."


    Applicants for admission to a degree program must submit an official transcript from each college attended. All University of Louisville transcripts will automatically be submitted with completion of an application. All applications are considered on an individual basis. Normally, a successful applicant will have an undergraduate GPA of 3.00 or higher and will have successfully completed sufficient coursework in basic biology, chemistry and mathematics.

    Statement of Experience and Professional Goals

    At the time of application, a 2-3 page typed statement should be sent to introduce the student to the faculty of the Department, describing past educational, laboratory and relevant life experiences, as well as outlining professional goals after the degree program. This statement should be sent directly to the Graduate Admissions Office (address listed above) or email (gradadm@louisville.edu).

    Letters of Recommendation

    Three letters of recommendation from persons familiar with the applicant's academic work are required. See recommendation form (PDF).

    English Proficiency

    All applicants for whom English is a second languagemust also submit official TOEFL scores of 213 or higher on the computer-based test or 550 or higher on the paper-based test for verification of English proficiency. Students holding a bachelor's or advanced degree from an accredited institution in the United States are exempt from this requirement. Information concerning the TOEFL exam can be obtained from: University Testing Center, or Test of English as a Foreign Language PO Box 6151 Princeton, NJ 08541 USA or http://www.toefl.org

    International Student Applicants

    International student applicants should visit http://graduate.louisville.edu/admissions/international-students.html.

    In addition to satisfying the appropriate credential requirements, applicants may be required to provide the following documents.

    • Applicants who attended college outside the US must submit verbatim notarized English translations of all academic records and credentials.
    • If on a Visa that requires an I-20 or IAP-66, the applicant is required to complete an international student financial supplement form and submit appropriate financial documentation.
    • A certified and officially translated transcript (by ECE or WES).
    • An international student cost estimate is available.

    Residency Policy

    Residency status for students is determined in the Office of Admissions. The status is determined according to the policy on classification of students for fee assessment purposes at state-supported institutions of higher education. Except as provided in the guidelines, it is presumed that a resident has remained in the state in a non-student status for the twelve months immediately preceding the last date for enrollment in the institution.

    The domicile of an unemancipated person, as defined in the guidelines, is that of his/her parent. The domicile of a married person is determined by the provisions of the guidelines independent of the residence of the spouse. Copies of the guidelines and appropriate forms for requesting change of residence classification may be obtained from the Office of Student Services.

    Indiana Tuition Reciprocity: The University of Louisville is participating in an Indiana Tuition Reciprocity Program for residents of Clark, Crawford, Floyd, Harrison or Scott Counties who have been admitted directly into an approved graduate program. Eligible participants are required to notify the Admissions Office prior to their first enrollment and the Registrar's Office after their first enrollment of any changes in enrollment status. [e.g. if they no longer live in one of the eligible counties, or are no longer in an eligible program.] The University reserves the right to further investigate and require documentation of eligibility for tuition reciprocity. 

    For Military Personnel: If an applicant, spouse or parent (if dependent) is currently stationed in Kentucky on military active duty for one or more years, please attach a copy of the military orders, a lease or mortgage showing Kentucky address and a military dependent identification card if appropriate. If the applicant is a Kentucky resident but has been in the military and have been recently discharged, please send a copy of the military discharge papers (DD-214).

    International Students on Immigrant/ Permanent Resident Status: If currently on an immigrant/ permanent resident status, it will be necessary to submit a copy of an immigration/ permanent resident card, both sides, for review of possible residency classification for tuition purposes. 

    The University of Louisville reserves the right to change programs of study, academic requirements, fees, schedules of courses, the announced academic calendar and deadlines without prior notice.