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Master in Medical Sciences

Master in Medical Sciences Overview

The MS in Medical Sciences degree prepares future researchers to bridge the interface between patient care and bench research, interact effectively with the spectrum of healthcare providers and community members, and function efficiently within large research teams. The curriculum is flexible and designed to provide a strong foundation in biological sciences along with scholarly activities that will encourage team-oriented projects, enhance interdisciplinary communication, develop leadership skills, and provide the foundation for a broad understanding of scientific, medical, and regulatory issues.

Benefits

A Master in Medical Sciences will serve to:

  1. Enhance your coursework and other training to prepare you for success in medical and graduate school and in your occupations.
  2. Earn an advanced degree to increase your earning potential, job placement and advancement in the future.

Target Length of the program: 12 to 24 months depending on number of credits taken per term (9-18 Credits)

Application deadline: March 15

Program format

The Master in Medical Sciences is available as:

  • A Master's degree program with thesis (32 credit hours)
  • A Master's degree program without thesis (36 credit hours)
  • A certificate program

Master of Science: Non-Thesis Option (36 Credits)

The College of Medicine has established a Non-Thesis Option for the Premedical Graduate Health Sciences Track within the Medical Sciences Master of Science Degree. The curriculum is designed to expand and deepen the student’s understanding of pre-clinical biomedical sciences in preparation for entry into medical or other health professional schools.

Curriculum options will include

Gross Anatomy Lab

  • Coursework that fulfills gaps in student preparations (e.g., biochemistry, genetics, organic chemistry, behavioral sciences, physiology, etc) or alternatively advanced courses that overlap with the courses for thesis masters track.
  • Short Internships (exposure to laboratory methods, physician shadowing, and other relevant experiences, to be determined in consultation with an advisor).
  • A capstone experience resulting in a written document.

Students may gain additional recognition by personalizing their course of study through certificate programs in Anatomical Sciences, statistics, or business for example, based on their future goals.

Students will be exposed to a common core curriculum:

  1. Biomedical Ethics and/or Responsible Conduct of Research
  2. Test preparation materials (MCAT or GRE) at reduced rates
  3. Application coaching/preparation and interview practice and skill development
  4. Exposure to careers in medical science.

Recommended Schedule of Classes

Year 1 — Fall Semester (9 credits)

  • MSCI 601 - Contemporary Topics in Advanced Cell Biology (5)
  • MSCI 689 - Introduction to Physical Exam Skills and Patient Communication (3)
  • MSCI 609 Responsible Conduct of Research (1)

Year 1 — Spring Semester (9 credits)

  • NEXT 620 - Gross Anatomy (8)
  • MSCI 681 - Seminar - Medical School Preparation (1)

Year 1 — Summer Semester (Optional)

  • Elective Coursework (Optional)
  • MSCI 685 - Research Internship (Non-Thesis, optional)
  • MSCI 691 - Directed Research (Thesis, optional)

Year 2 — Fall Semester (9 credits)

  • MPHY 613 - Medical Physiology I (5)
  • MSCI 630 - Pathogenesis of Human Disease (4)
  • Elective Coursework (Optional)

Year 2 — Spring Semester (9 credits)

  • MPHY 614 - Medical Physiology II (5)
  • Elective Coursework (4)

Curriculum

The curriculum for the M.S. Medical Sciences degree is designed to give the candidate a thorough and comprehensive knowledge of the field beyond that of the undergraduate degree. Students who graduate with a master’s degree will: demonstrate proficiency of degree-program requirements; apply subject matter knowledge in a range of contexts to solve problems and make decisions; use a variety of sources and evaluate multiple points of view to analyze and integrate information; communicate effectively; use appropriate technologies; develop clear research plans and conduct appropriate research; and choose ethical courses of action in research and practice. The progression to the M.S. degree is well defined in the Graduate Catalog on the OGAPS website, some aspects summarized here

Degree Plan

The student’s Advisory Committee, in consultation with the student, will develop the proposed Degree Plan. The Degree Plan must be completed and filed with OGAPS by the end of the first year, and no later than 90 days prior to the date of the Final Examination. A minimum of 32 CR (Thesis option) or 36 CR (Non-Thesis option) will need to be submitted for approval to OGAPS. Additional coursework may be added to the approved Degree Plan by petition if it is deemed necessary by the Advisory Committee to correct deficiencies in the student’s academic preparation.

Advisory Committee

The student’s Advisory Committee for the M.S. in Medical Sciences degree will consist of no fewer than 3 members of the Graduate Faculty, Only Graduate Faculty members located on Texas A&M University campuses may serve as chair of a student’s Advisory Committee. Other Graduate Faculty members located off-campus may serve as a member or co-chair (but not chair) with a member as the chair. The student in agreement with the chair of the Advisory Committee has the responsibility for calling required meetings of the committee and for calling meetings at any other time considered desirable. For more information on the M.S. in Medical Sciences Program, please refer to the Graduate Student Catalog.

Coursework

Below some of the courses available for MS students in the Thesis and Non-thesis Option tracks.

MSCI 601 Contemporary Topics in Advanced Cell Biology (5 credits)
Advanced cell and molecular biology course examining the molecular basis of cellular functions relevant to human health.

MSCI 689 Introduction to Physical Exam Skills and Patient Communication (3 credits)
This is a seminar course of introductory physical exam techniques and patient communication skills for MS students on the pre-med track. Students will also be trained to perform as Standardized Patients and will have opportunities throughout the semester to earn hours as Standardized Patients for TAMU’s Clinical Learning Resource Center.

MSCI 609 Responsible Conduct of Research (1 credit)
Responsible conduct of research (RCR) is defined by NIH as the practice of scientific investigation with integrity. It involves the awareness of established professional norms and ethical principles in the performance of all activities related to scientific research. This course is designed as a survey of basic topics that trainees will need to understand as they enter into the practice of research.

NEXT 620 Gross Anatomy (8 credits)
This course will study the relationship of structures and the functional significance of the human body during its development and adult form as revealed through dissection.

MSCI 681 Seminar - Medical School Preparation (1 credit)
Weekly meetings will consist of medical school application coaching, mock medical school interviews, MCAT assistance, Q&A with Texas A&M College of Medicine Medical School representatives, and other preparatory activities.

MSCI 630 Pathogenesis of Human Disease (4 credits)
Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to recognize and describe the molecular events responsible for various human diseases.

MPHY 613 Medical Physiology I & MPHY 614 Medical Physiology II (5 credits each)
This course is a comprehensive survey of the functions of the human body: transport processes, feedback control systems, and homeostasis.

MSCI 691 Research (flexible credits) for students taking the Thesis option

Suggested Electives

  • MSCI 605 Foundations of Biomedical Informatics (3, Fall)
  • MPIM 601 Microbial Pathogenesis of Human Disease (3, Spring)
  • NEXT 603 Neuropsychopharmacology (4)
  • NEXT 689 General Pharmacology (3, Spring)
  • MSCI 635 Basic Immunology (3, Spring)
  • NRSC 601 Principles of Neuroscience I (3, Fall) / II (3, Spring)

How to Apply

Prospective Medical Sciences students apply through the Texas A&M Graduate CAS.

Please, make sure to fill out the application for Texas A&M University - Medical Science Program Application. Avoid confusion with the program in Biomedical Sciences at Texas A&M University.

Applicants will be contacted by the Medical Science Program Coordinator to confirm the receipt of the application.

Essay and Resume

Students applying to the MS in Medical Science should write an essay highlighting the background and how the MS in Medical Sciences can help the applicant to accomplish his/her future career goals.

Letters of Recommendation

Two strong letters of recommendation indicating academic excellence, personal maturity, and exceptional motivation, as well as interest in the experimental sciences, are an important part of the application.

Transcripts

Transcripts of a four-year baccalaureate degree from an accredited university are required.

Test Scores

The GRE scores (general or subject) are not required to apply to our program. Applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit proof of English proficiency, according to the guidelines of the Office of Admissions. The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is the most common test taken by applicants to our program. Other options and exemptions are found at the Office of Admissions

Domestic and International Applicants

Domestic applicants are those individuals who are U.S. citizens, U.S. permanent residents, and Canadian citizens. International applicants are those individuals who are not U.S. citizens, U.S. permanent residents, or Canadian citizens. Domestic and

Application Deadlines

  • Application opens: August 1
  • Application closes: March 15