PhD Program

Doctoral student Lakeisha Lewter (right) did not have a pharmacology background when she joined the lab of Jun-Xu Li, MD, PhD, but says he taught her pharmacological terms, methods and concepts through personalized feedback and attention.

The PhD in neuroscience is part of the PhD Program in Biomedical Sciences (PPBS).

Students interested in the Neuroscience PhD program should apply directly to the PhD Program in Biomedical Sciences (PPBS) in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. Entering students participate in a core curriculum in the first semester. Beginning in the second semester, PPBS students have the option to take Neuroscience courses as electives. Students select their adviser and their major at the end of the Spring semester.

The PhD requires 72 credits, including at least 20 credits of didactic courses and the remainder composed of a mix of didactic and research credits. Most of the didactic course requirements can be completed in the first year.

The Neuroscience program has a set of required courses (NRS 520, 524, 601, and 602 and PMY 516). In addition, students can select from a variety of elective courses (such as BE 500, BIO 506, BIO 517, PSY 513) on consultation with their mentor.

At the end of the second year students prepare for the preliminary examination, which is a the submission of a modified grant proposal.

On successful completion of all required courses and the preliminary examination, students can apply to candidacy. At that time they select a thesis committee that consists of their mentor and three other faculty.

Other requirements: Grade of B or higher on all required courses, overall GPA above 3.0.

After the second year, students and their mentors should have an annual progress meeting with their thesis committee and submit a brief progress report to the Neuroscience Program.

For more info please view the Graduate School of Policies and Procedures Manual which contains information relating to: admissions, registration, grading, student records, degree requirements, and academic integrity.

The following lists show a sample schedule of coursework for eight semesters:

Semester 1

Semester 2

Selection of Thesis Adviser

Summer Laboratory Rotations (Optional)

Semester 3

Semester 4

Summer — Preliminary Exam and Advancement to Candidacy   

Semesters 5-8

Financial Assistance

The Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences provides PhD students with a tuition scholarship, a stipend, and medical/dental insurance.

Students may also apply for NIH, AMA, or any other research grants.

How to Apply

  1. Prospective PhD Students must apply to the PhD Program in Biomedical Sciences through UB’s online Graduate School Application Manager. 
  2. The application Fee is $85. You may pay the fee when you apply online or pay it separately here.

International Students

Please visit the International Student Services website if you have any questions regarding immigration status.

If you do not have access to the technology to be able to upload a copy of your transcripts or any additional application materials on your application, please send them to: 

Neuroscience Program
University at Buffalo
655 Biomedical Research Building
Buffalo NY 14214


Sim, Fraser

Fraser Sim, PhD

Associate Professor; Neuroscience Program Director

955 Main Street, Room 3256 Buffalo, NY 14203

Phone: 829-2151


Lisa Zander.

Lisa Zander

Assistant Director of Academic Administration

955 Main Street, Room 6134, Buffalo, NY 14203

Phone: (716) 881-7507