Nicole Phillips, PhD, Graduate Advisor
Center for BioHealth 327 | Phone: 817-735-5463 | E-mail: Nicole.Phillips@unthsc.edu
Genetics is a broad interdisciplinary field that leverages biochemistry, microbial and cellular biology, molecular processes, biotechnology, computational biology, biogeography and human disease to gain an integrated understanding of environmental and clinical observations. The Genetics discipline offers training in analytical techniques and computational methods necessary for studies in the different fields of applied genetics. Our faculty have broad research interests as most analytical approaches to genetics studies are applicable to a myriad of biological processes. Faculty programs are funded by multiple sources including the federal government, state government, private foundations and industry, and collaboration between the various UNTHSC programs and schools is strongly supported. Students may undertake research in areas such as cancer genetics, computational genetics, pharmacogenetics, evolutionary genetics, medical genetics, microbial genetics, forensic genetics/genomics, and many other interrelated disciplines.
The faculty of the Genetics discipline have identified Student Learning Outcomes specific to the discipline. In addition to the GSBS competencies graduates will:
- Demonstrate mastery of cutting edge research approaches in genetics/genomics;
- Describe, critically evaluate, and apply current theoretical perspectives in genetics;
- Demonstrate proficiency in analytical and statistical procedures appropriate for genetic analyses; and
- Describe role of genetic and genomic assessment in clinical practice, including applications in disease screening, diagnosis, and pharmacogenetics.
Students may enter the discipline with a variety of academic backgrounds, provided they have fulfilled prerequisite core courses and have completed their required rotations with a minimum of one (1) Genetics faculty member. Experience in laboratory methods, computer programming and bioinformatics is strongly recommended. Students wishing to enter the discipline should meet with the Graduate Advisor at the earliest possible time to obtain information on the discipline and guidance in selecting lab rotations and potential mentors. Students may request to join the discipline at the end of the first semester.
Students will receive extensive training in the foundations and techniques of contemporary molecular genetics in their laboratories and through elective courses. Students will perform original, publishable research, and present their research findings at scientific meetings. Doctoral students are required to have a minimum of one paper published in their dissertation research area prior to applying to defend their dissertation. In addition, students are required to present an update on their research and solicit suggestions during the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Genetics Works in Progress (WIPs) (MIMG 5140) sessions held weekly. With the consent of their research mentor, students may present their research progress at the annual UNTHSC Research Appreciation Day (RAD). Students should be aware that the timeline for their successful completion of the degree plan will vary depending upon the nature of their research, their time management skills and their level of academic development. Graduates with advanced degrees in Genetics typically find employment in higher education, industry and government agencies.