2006 - 2007 Site Archive



Graduate Bulletin

Biochemistry, M.S.


Admission Requirements and Deadlines
Application Deadline:

Fall: April 15

Spring: November 15

Applications are processed as they are received throughout the year.

APPLY ONLINE to this graduate program.

Letters of Reference:

Number Required: 2

From Whom: Letters of recommendation should be obtained from professors of science.

Coursework Required for Admission Consideration:

Applicants should have one year of Biological Science (Biochemistry, Molecular Biology); one year of General Chemistry; one year of Organic Chemistry; one year of Physics; and Mathematics through Calculus. Physical Chemistry is also desirable.

Master's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:


Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline:

A baccalaureate degree in the Biological or Chemical sciences is required.

Statement of Goals:

The Statement of Goals should be approximately 500-1,000 words and should include the following elements: the applicant's interest in Temple's Biochemistry program, research goals, future career goals, and academic and research achievements.

Standardized Test Scores:

The GRE is required. Acceptance by Temple University requires submission of verbal, quantitative, and analytical GRE scores. GRE scores below the 50th percentile are outside the norm set by the Graduate School and no individual score in the verbal, quantitative, or analytical sections should be below that level.

The GRE Subject Exam in Chemistry or Biology is required.

Minimum TOEFL score needed to be accepted: 650 paper-based, 280 computer-based, or 114 internet-based.

Transfer Credit:

Graduate credits from an accredited institution may be transferred into the Biochemistry graduate program. The credits must be equivalent to coursework offered at Temple and the grades must be a "B" or better in order to transfer. The student's advisory committee will review the courses and make the recommendation to accept the credits based on the student's knowledge of the course material and initial performance in the program. The maximum number of credits a student may transfer is 6.

Test Waivers:

Upon review of the student's background by the Graduate Admissions Committee, applicants with high levels of performance in one or more areas can gain favorable consideration for an application that is otherwise outside the acceptance matrix.

Program Requirements
General Program Requirements:

Number of Didactic Credits Required Beyond the Baccalaureate: 24

Required Courses:

The Department of Biochemistry participates in the "Interdisciplinary Program in Biomedical Sciences" at the Temple University School of Medicine, as described on the School of Medicine graduate studies website.  The program requires Ph.D. and M.S. students to take a defined set of courses over the first two years:

    • 2 courses from the "Foundations of Biosciences Series" comprising either a basic or advanced biochemistry course and a course on molecular and cell biology.
    • 2 courses comprising Scientific Communication and Scientific Integrity.
    • 2 courses from the "Integrated Biosciences Series" from the following list:

      Molecular Approaches to Research

      Principles of Physiology

      Principles of Pharmacology

      Principles of Organ Pathology

      Principles of Genetics

      Principles of Development

      Cancer Biology

      Host-Pathogen Interactions

      Cell Structure and Function

      Proteins and Enzymes


Students of Biochemistry are required to take "Proteins and Enzymes."  In addition, all students will take the following required courses:

Biochemistry 505-506 and an additional ten credits. These must be chosen from Biochemistry 502, 503, 523, 534. Students must earn credits in the following areas: 6 credits in research methodology; 6 credits in Biochemistry, Life Science, or Chemistry chosen by the student and approved by the student's advisory committee.

Internship: No internship is required.

Language Examination: No language examination is required.

Culminating Events:


The thesis for the M.S. degree must be based on an original research project. It should demonstrate the student's familiarity with laboratory techniques related to the research project and ability to evaluate critically the biochemical literature. The thesis normally requires a minimum of one full year of research for completion.

The student will submit the thesis in a complete form not less than one calendar month prior to the date of the Final Examination. The thesis must have been read and approved by the thesis advisor prior to distribution. The student should confirm a time and date for the thesis defense with the Advisory Committee and the Director of the Graduate Program at least 10 days before the defense is to be scheduled.

The Final Examination consists of a defense of the student's thesis and a demonstration of competence within the field of the thesis and closely related areas by the student's advisory committee. The Committee will vote to pass or fail the thesis and the defense at the conclusion of the presentation. If the student must make revisions, those changes must be approved as arranged by the Committee.

Program Contact Information:


Department Information:

Dept. of Biochemistry
School of Medicine
3420 N. Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19140

Department Contacts:


Charles Grubmeyer, Ph.D.


Program Coordinator:

Parkson Lee-Gau Chong, Ph.D.


Graduate Chairperson:

Dianne R. Soprano, Ph.D.


E. Premkumar Reddy, Ph.D.


About the Program

The Department of Biochemistry offers full-time day programs of study leading to the Master of Science and the Doctor of Philosophy degrees. The graduate program is designed to provide training in the theory and practice of biochemistry and molecular biology for eventual service in research and teaching positions. The program is aimed at broad training in the various major areas of biochemistry and molecular biology, with in-depth training in one area of specialization. Students are given opportunities for instruction in diverse laboratory techniques through a series of lecture and laboratory courses, together with a program of experimental research under the guidance of a faculty member.

Time Limit for Degree Completion: 3 years

Campus Location:

Health Sciences

With the permission of the advisory committee, elective courses not offered on the Health Sciences Campus may be taken at other campuses.

Full-Time/Part-Time Status:

Students are able to complete the degree program through classes offered before 4:30 p.m.

Department Information:

Dept. of Biochemistry
School of Medicine
3420 N. Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19140

Interdisciplinary Study:

Members of the Fels Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Biology, the Specialized Center for Thrombosis Research, and the Center for Substance Abuse Research who hold academic appointments in the Department of Biochemistry also participate in the graduate training program.


Not applicable.

Study Abroad:



The "Insider's Guide to the Colleges" ranked the Department of Biochemistry as nationally acknowledged and "one of the best in the country."


Not applicable.

Areas of Specialization:

Specialized graduate training is available in the fields of enzymology, structure and biosynthesis of membranes, biochemical regulation of metabolism and of cell division, biochemical mechanisms of blood coagulation, lipid and carbohydrate metabolism, physical chemistry and kinetics, mechanisms of hormone action, nucleic acid and protein synthesis, and regulation of gene expression. Also, multidisciplinary instruction is available in the fields of molecular biology, chemical carcinogenesis, tumor enzymology, and the biochemistry of aging.

Job Placement:

The graduate faculty has designed a well-balanced program that can be individually tailored to meet the interests and needs of each student and to fully prepare each student for a career in academic or industrial biochemistry or related fields. The graduate program is designed to provide training in the theory and practice of biochemistry for eventual placement in research and teaching positions.


Not applicable.

Non-Degree Student Policy:

Non-matriculated students may enroll in some courses with permission from the course instructor and approval from the Office of Graduate Studies, School of Medicine.

Financing Opportunities

Research Assistants are expected to devote full-time effort on research pertaining to their thesis project in the laboratory of their faculty research advisor. An assistantship application is not required because candidates admitted to the program generally receive a stipend or work study support plus a tuition scholarship.

Updated 2.9.06