2021–2022 curriculum


Required Courses

Other Requirements**

Late Summer

PSPG Primer - Led by current students

Statistics - Course registration occurs in Fall (Biostatistics 273) although the workshops will occur before the start of the quarter.


Fall Term


PSPG 245A (Giacomini)

Principles of Pharmaceutical Sciences – Pharmacokinetics, Drug Metabolism and

Transport (5 units)



BMI 206 (Pollard) Statistical Methods for Bioinformatics (4 units)

Chem 243 (Craik) Chemical Biology (5 units) Includes CUBS

Some students might find it more useful to take BMI 206 in the fall of their second year, when they have better computational skills. Alternatively, there is a planned new course for Fall 2022 on study design and statistics that could count for the Fall elective.

Complete 1st rotation

Racism in Science (GRAD 202)

QBC Journal Club (PSPG 297)

PSPG Student Research Talks (PSPG 220)

Graduate Research Opportunities Pizza Talks 

PSPG Seminars (PSPG 223)

PSPG One Day Retreat

Winter Term


PSPG 245 B1 (Savic)

Systems Pharmacology (2 units)

PSPG 245 B2 (Bandyopadhyay)

Systems Pharmacology (2 units)



BMI 203 (Keiser) Biocomputing Algorithms (3 units) Requires preapproval from instructor determined by computations skills.

Chem 241 (Grabe) Molecular Thermodynamics & Statistical Mechanics (5 units)

BMS 255 (Vaisse) Principles of Genetics (4 units) Requires early registration, please ask PSPG Program Administrator

PSPG 273 (Guo) Pharmacology 

Complete 2nd rotation

QBC Journal Club

PSPG Student Research Talks


Pizza Talks

Spring Term


PSPG 245C  (Ahituv) Pharmacogenomics mini course (3 units)


SELECT TWO MINI COURSES (course list will be available in Winter)

Complete 3rd Rotation

Journal Club

Student Research Talks


PSPG Retreat

End of Spring



Additional year one requirements


Course Information


Ethical Conduct of Science BMS 214 Spring 1 unit Ethical Conduct of Science Course

Lab Rotations

PSPG 206

Fall, Winter, Spring

2 Units each, 3 rotations

Three 10 week rotations.  A minimum of two rotations must be in current PSPG faculty laboratory, unless approval is granted by the program director.

QBC Journal Club

PSPG 297

Fall, Winter, Spring

1 unit

Journal club presentations by first and second year students in the BP, BMI, CCB and PSPG graduate programs.

Graduate Research Opportunities


Fall, Winter (pending faculty sign ups)

1 unit

Faculty-Student Talks

Student Research Talks

PSPG 220

Fall, Winter, Spring

1 unit each

Annual research seminar, first year students discuss a rotation project or present a general talk on an area of research
  • Mini-Courses: Three-week elective courses that allow for diversification of curriculum. Each student will take 3 minicourses in their first spring quarter, including the required PSPG 245C.
  • Advising: Rotations and Coursework must be approved by your assigned Academic Advisor.
  • Students may count only one of the following courses as a core elective: BMI 206 or BMI 203. Additional courses can be taken in the second year once the core requirements are met.
  • Other elective courses may be offered but require approval from an academic advisor. If interested please inquire for information on additional electives offered through other graduate programs.

Additional requirements for the duration of your time in the program

PSPG Research Talks

PSPG 220, 1 unit

Fall, Winter, Spring

PSPG student research talks

PSPG-Research Seminars

PSPG 223 (zero credits)

Fall, Winter, Spring

Research seminars presented by visiting scientists: All students attend. Students attend lunch with seminar speakers whose research or career are of interest.

QBC Retreat Fall Attend the annual QBC Retreat and present a poster or talk (advanced students may be nominated by their PI to speak). Goals: Improve presentation skills and facilitate collaborations with labs outside your main field.
PSPG Annual Event Spring

Typically in the spring, student leaders will plan a PSPG specific event that typically includes a mix of science, career development and alumni interactions. All students are required to attend.

Year two requirements




Oral Qualifying Exam

Must complete by end of second year

All core course work and elective credits must be completed prior to taking the qualifying examination


(every quarter, year 2 and forward)

Fall, Winter, Spring

1-8 units


Teaching Assistantship

Summer, Fall or Winter

One quarter TA position in PSPG or School of Pharmacy; most students will TA in the Foundations course for the PharmD program which requires you are in town and available between July 20-Sept 8

QBC Journal Club

PSPG 297 (sign up as BMI 223)

Fall, Winter, Spring

1 unit

Journal club presentations by first and second year students in the BP, BMI, CCB and PSPG graduate programs.

Grant Writing Workshop BP 297 Fall 1 unit Support for fellowship applications

Year three requirements and beyond




Advance to Candidacy and submit first IDP

Within 6 months following Qualifying Exam

Individual Development Plan (IDP) must be submitted at time of advancement. Refer to:

Annual Thesis Meetings, yr 3 and forward

On or around the anniversary of your Qualifying Exam

Thesis meetings are to be held at least once every 6-9 months following completion of oral exam.  Must include discussion of updated IDP and planned career development activities.

Those who have not graduated by Winter of 6th year must retake Ethical Conduct of Science

Winter Year 6

Ethical Conduct of Science must be taken once every 4 years. Students in year 6 will take the Postdoc version of the Ethical Conduct of Research Course.

The expected time to graduation is five years. In order to graduate you must submit your thesis to the Graduate Division and give a Thesis Seminar. Extending time in the program beyond six years is subject to the approval of the PSPG Executive Committee.