Dartmouth MCB consists of approximately 186 students and 73 faculty members whose research spans a wide range of topics including biophysics and structural biology, biotechnology, cancer biology, cell biology, circadian biology, computational and quantitative biology, developmental biology, evolutionary biology, genetics, genomics and proteomics, immunology, microbiology, molecular pathogenesis and host-microbe interactions, neuroscience, plant molecular biology, regulation of gene expression, and signal transduction and cellular metabolism. Each student works closely with a thesis advisor and has the opportunity to interact daily with other members of the program. Research rotations during the first year provide students the opportunity to explore diverse research interests and then make an informed decision when selecting a thesis lab. Graduate student "research in progress" seminars are held on a weekly basis providing both an opportunity to learn about each other's research and to obtain feedback from faculty and students. Informal interactions among program students and faculty take place during weekly get-togethers, journal clubs and annual retreats. The MCB program also offers joint degree programs with Geisel School of Medicine (M.D./Ph.D.) and Tuck School of Business (M.B.A./Ph.D.).
During the first year in the program, MCB students are required to perform three research rotations in the labs of three different faculty members. Each rotation lasts approximately three months, covering the periods: September-November, December-February, and March-May. The choice of labs for rotation is based primarily on the interests of the students.
After the rotations are completed, students will select a thesis lab from among their three research rotation labs. During the second year, MCB students present their research to the MCB community once a year. Research-in-progress (RIPs) seminars give students experience presenting to a diverse audience, provides the opportunity for feedback from faculty and fellow students, and keeps the MCB community informed about the work going on in colleagues labs. During the Fall, Winter and Spring terms of the first year, MCB students are required to take a three-term core course that gives a broad overview of biochemistry, molecular biology, and cell biology. This course sequence is team taught by faculty members specializing in these areas. In addition to the three-term core course, students are required to successfully complete three advanced elective courses selected from a broad list of MCB approved elective courses. Elective coursework is typically completed during the first three years in the graduate program. Students will also complete an approved ethics course as part of the program requirements. Students are required to participate in a Journal Club during each year of their graduate education. Journal Clubs are informal seminars which allow students the opportunity to read, analyze, present and discuss papers from the primary literature. Each student has the choice of which Journal Club to attend. There are several existing Journal Clubs which meet during Fall, Winter and Spring terms:
Students normally choose a thesis advisor for thesis research at the end of the first year and after they have completed three research rotations. These arrangements are made by mutual agreement of the student, and the thesis advisor, with the approval of the Graduate Committee.
All graduate students in the MCB program are required to gain experience in teaching. To fulfill this requirement, students serve as teaching assistants for one term, usually in the second year of graduate study. The teaching experience is considered an important part of graduate education and includes instruction from faculty on how to organize and present a lecture. Teaching normally involves supervising laboratory and discussion sections as well as grading lab reports and exams.
Each student must pass a qualifying examination to be advanced to candidacy for the Ph.D. The qualifying exam has two components: a written research proposal and an oral defense which focuses on the written proposal. The format of the written exam is similar to a postdoctoral fellowship grant application to give the student practical experience in scientific writing.
In the second year, students establish a thesis advisory committee. Research progress is monitored by meetings with this committee at least once a year. When the student, thesis advisor, and thesis advisory committee agree that the thesis is near completion, the student begins compiling and writing the thesis. For many students at this stage, thesis research has already resulted in publication in peer reviewed journals. After submission of the thesis and a public presentation, the student defends the thesis before an examination committee.
Each university in the Unites States of America sets its own admission standards so there isn't the same criteria for all the students and the university can decide which applicants meet those standards. The fee for each application is between $35 to $100.
After the selections of the universities you want to attend, the best of all would be to contact each university for an application form and more admission information for the international students. Moreover, for a graduate or postgraduate program it's necessary to verify the admission requirements. Some programs require that you send your application directly to their department.
Admissions decisions are based on students's academic record and different test scores, such as TOEFL, the SAT or ACT (for undergraduate programs) and GRE or GMAT (for graduate programs). Admission decision is based on your academic results and motivation.
All MCB students receive a stipend of $27,720 ($28,220 for students who have passed their qualifying exams), a Dartmouth Fellowship that provides a full tuition scholarship, and a prepaid health insurance plan. Stipends for future years will be adjusted for inflation and are contingent upon satisfactory performance in studies. We do not require certification of your financial situation. If admitted to the program you will need sufficient funds to come to the U.S. and then support yourself for one month until the first stipend check which is on October 1.