Master’s Program

Curriculum and Requirements

The master’s degree in pharmacology (MS) requires a minimum of 30 credit hours of coursework.

Students typically complete our master’s program in two years.

You will conduct master’s thesis research throughout the entire program in one or more laboratories. Writing a thesis document is mandatory.



This curriculum applies to the cohort starting the MS program in Fall 2023 and onward. Students in the 2022-2024 cohort should consult the printed timelines or email for any clarifications. 

1st Semester

  • BMS 501 Cell Biology I, 4 credits
  • BCH 503 Biochemical Principles, 4 credits
  • PMY 751 Thesis Research, 4 credits (register in Dr. Bass's section)

2nd Semester

  • Research Ethics- microcredential
  • PMY 503 Fundamentals of Pharmacology, 5 credits
  • PMY 752 Thesis Research in your Mentor's section, 7 credits
  • Graduate level electives (Optional)

1st Summer

Thesis Research

Summer requirement: Apply for full-time status if you are taking less than 12 research credits per semester for the duration of your program. 

3rd Semester

  • PMY XXX-  Biological Based Therapeutics, 4 credits (new course starting Fall 2024)
  • PMY 751 Thesis Research, 1 credit

4th Semester

  • PMY 516 Molecular Neuropsychopharmacology, 3 credits
  • PMY 752 Thesis Research, 1 credit

2nd Summer

Thesis Research and Defense

Elective Courses

You may choose electives from the list below or take other courses for elective credit in consultation with your thesis advisor.

  • PMY 505/506 Pharmacology Seminar, 2 credits each
  • PMY 626 Toxicology—Principles and Practice, 2 credits
  • PMY 627 Target Organ Toxicity, 2 credits
  • BCH 507 Protein Structure and Function, 2-3 credits
  • BCH 508 Gene Expression, 2 credits
  • NRS 520 Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience, 4 credits

Thesis Research Requirements

In addition to your academic coursework, you are required to complete several tasks related to your thesis research, as outlined in this timeline.

You will conduct your mandatory thesis research under the supervision of your major professor and a thesis advisory committee. In addition to your thesis advisor, your committee must include one faculty member from our department and one faculty member from another UB department.

Your research culminates in a written thesis dissertation, which is an original contribution to the scientific literature. You will present your thesis to faculty and students in a seminar, and then complete an oral defense.

Grading and Promotion Standards

We require a minimum grade of B in all coursework.

If you do not meet this requirement in a single course, you will be placed on academic probation. If this happens repeatedly, you could be asked to leave the program. The Graduate School also requires an overall average of 3.0 for degree conferral.