Course Requirements for Thesis Master of Science Degree

To be eligible to apply for a Thesis Master of Science degree in Neurobiology the student must complete the following:

  • At least 10 credit hours of thesis research (ANAT 6970 OR ANAT 7970)
  • At least 20 credit hours of graduate level course work at the University of Utah, including:
    • The first-year core curriculum of the Bioscience Program (or equivalent) and the Program Capstone Exam
    • At least one additional didactic course (minimum of 3 credit hours) 
  • 2 semesters of RIP (ANAT 7720)
  • Pass a Qualifying (Preliminary) exam in Neurobiology, which will include preparation and defense of a thesis or dissertation proposal
  • Write a master’s thesis and successfully defend the contents of the thesis in an oral exam (thesis defense).

Students must maintain a 3.0 or higher GPA and pass all courses with B- or higher.  All work for the master’s degree must be completed within four consecutive calendar years.

Master’s thesis

A master’s thesis will likely encompass a smaller body of work than a Ph.D. dissertation. Nonetheless the thesis should present a novel line of research conducted by the student.  At a minimum the written thesis should include an introductory chapter that is a scholarly review of the field, and at least one additional chapter that describes the student’s research in standard manuscript format and includes a discussion of the experimental outcomes relative to the current state of the field.  Reprints of published work by the student may be included in the master’s thesis at the discretion of the thesis committee.

The written thesis must be submitted to the student’s advisor at least 3 weeks before the scheduled oral exam (thesis defense), and to the Supervisory Committee at least 2 weeks before the exam.  The oral exam will consist of a formal presentation of the student’s thesis research that is open to the public.  The presentation will be followed by a question and answer period.  At the conclusion of the public presentation, the Supervisory Committee may excuse the public and conduct further questioning on the thesis and related topics.  The outcome of the thesis defense is reported on the Report of the Final Oral Exam and Thesis for the Master’s Degree form.

(approved 5/25/18)