The medical physics specialization is a graduate program leading to a Master’s of Science degree through the Department of Physiology and Biophysics in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
The program’s goal is to provide a sound academic foundation and practical experience for those planning to pursue a career in research, teaching or clinical medical physics in either of the subspecialty areas of medical imaging physics, therapeutic radiation physics or nuclear medicine physics.
Graduates are prepared for careers in these subspecialties or the continuation of their education in a postgraduate or residency program. The program comprises both academic and practical training components with the practical training taking place in affiliated hospitals.
The medical physics program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Physics Educational Programs, CAMPEP.
The medical physics group comprises faculty in multiple UB and Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) departments, post-doctoral staff, graduate student assistants, and undergraduate students with additional contributions from bioengineering, clinical and allied faculty as well as technical and administrative staff. The medical physics program faculty conduct research, teach and practice clinical medical physics in affiliated hospitals.
The medical physics specialization in the graduate program leading to the MS degree in biophysical sciences is intended to provide a sound scientific foundation and practical experience for those planning to pursue a career in research, teaching, or clinical medical physics service whether in sub-specialty areas of medical imaging physics, therapeutic radiation physics or nuclear medicine physics. In order to promote the achievement of this objective, the following program requirements have been adopted:
The program is structured to meet the requirements of CAMPEP for an accredited medical physics training program and those of the Department of Physiology and Biophysics of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
A total of at least 36 credit hours are required for the MS degree. Of this total, at least 28 credit hours (for a Thesis Master’s) or 30 credit hours (for a project Master’s) must be earned in formal didactic coursework (including letter-graded Independent Study), including no more than 4 credit hours in Seminar, 4 credit hours in Medical Physics Practicum and excluding credits for Research, Thesis Guidance, Supervised Teaching, and (unless receiving a prior approval under special circumstances) pass/fail Independent Study. Where appropriate, didactic course credits not exceeding 6 hours may be transferred from other graduate programs.
The following courses, where graded, must be successfully completed with the achievement of a grade of B or better.
Required of all students in the medical physics specialization:
Substitution of a more advanced course(s) is only upon approval by the adviser and program director.
An additional 3-credit elective is required for PhD students and at least 3 additional credits from at least one of the following selected specialties is required for all students:
Medical Imaging Physics
Therapeutic Radiation Physics
Nuclear Medicine Physics
Qualified students may petition for a waiver of the requirement for any specific course upon the basis of the completion of an equivalent course with a grade of B or higher.
Students may be subject to a comprehensive examination once completing all core medical physics courses.
Master’s students are required to register for biophysics seminar credit for at least 2 semesters; in addition, attendance at one of the specialized medical physics seminars for at least 2 semesters is also required.
Completion of the master’s degree requires either a) submission of a thesis based upon a research program completed by the candidate; or b) completion of a project exploring an area or technique of medical physics in some depth.
The thesis research is conducted by the graduate student under the tutelage of his/her major professor and Thesis Advisory Committee. A major professor and a minimum of two faculty members from the department, the program’s graduate faculty, or from outside the department shall form the Thesis Advisory Committee. All should hold the rank of assistant professor or above in the university faculty.
The research will culminate in a written thesis dissertation, which is an original contribution, written in English. Thesis preparation is critically monitored and supervised by the Major Professor and the Thesis Advisory Committee, both of whom must approve the thesis prior to the oral defense. The oral defense of thesis is scheduled after the candidate’s Thesis Advisory Committee and the department have approved the thesis. The thesis is presented to the graduate faculty in a seminar followed by an oral defense.
Master’s students are not generally eligible for institutional stipends or tuition scholarship awards. Some students may qualify for financial assistance from their advisors while working on a research or service project.
Highly qualified underrepresented minority candidates may be eligible for assistance through the Arthur A. Schomburg Fellowship.
Federal grants and loans are available by filing the FAFSA application.
You can apply to the Medical Physics Master’s program online using the link to the MS Biophysics Application.
In the Curricular Interests section of the application form, check the box for “Biophysics” and in the message box labeled “Specify Other Research Interest(s),” indicate your interest in the medical physics specialization as well as whether you are interested in the MS, PhD, or both.
After you have applied online, you must submit these official credentials:
GRE score reporting codes:
Your official credentials should be submitted directly to the department to the attention of:
The application fee is $75.
Your application fee must be paid online. This can be done via your GrAdMIT application account.
International applicants must also present your official TOEFL score. It is university policy that TOEFL score reports be no older than two years when students enter a program. A TOEFL (PBT) score of 550 or TOEFL (IBT) score of 79 is considered the minimum acceptable for admissions consideration.
The Medical Physics Accreditation Commission, CAMPEP, requires that entering students have either an undergraduate physics major or a strong physics minor with at least three upper-level advanced physics courses as required of physics majors.
Admission is based on:
Recommended undergraduate courses include: physics and mathematics, including calculus and statistics, biomedical and/or electrical engineering, chemistry, biology, and physiology.
Your application should be completed and official documentation filed no later than March 15 for matriculation in the fall semester. However, the program has a rolling admission and you should contact the program director if you desire to file after this deadline. The admissions committee of the program will review your completed application and you will be contacted directly by the program regarding admission.