About the program

The Neuroscience Ph.D. Program offers an interdepartmental, integrated curriculum for graduate study leading to the Ph.D. degree in Neuroscience. The Neuroscience Ph.D. Program prepares students to teach in the neuroscience disciplines at a university or academic health center, and is distinguished by its objective to prepare the students to function as an independent research investigator.

Faculty members in the neuroscience program are affiliated with the departments of Anatomy and Neurobiology, Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Human and Molecular Genetics, Pharmacology and Toxicology and Physiology and Biophysics. Investigators use a wide variety of state-of-the-art techniques to investigate topics whose scope ranges from the single molecule to integrated brain function.

Faculty members among the departments maintain active collaborations, a feature crucial in today’s world of the multidisciplinary approaches in neuroscience. Research questions often require a breadth of expertise and technical skills, both of which VCU is particularly proud to offer. Additionally, this cooperation is fostered by the fact that individual students’ advisory committees consist of members from multiple departments.

The goal of the doctoral program in neuroscience is to provide students with a core of knowledge of the basic structure and function of the central nervous system while allowing flexibility in the choice of their advisers, electives and areas of research specialization.  

Upon completion of the Neuroscience Ph.D., students will have:

- Demonstrated a mastery of Neuroscience and related Bioscience knowledge.
- Developed effective oral, written and electronic communication skills.
- Demonstrated the ability to formulate, design, implement and interpret experimental approaches.
- Achieved a level of competency to advance to positions as Neuroscience researchers and teachers in a broad spectrum of academic, industrial and government employment venues.
- Obtained employment in a Neuroscience-related position.

Program Guidelines:   Neuroscience Program Guidelines