Laboratory Rotations

Many schools require you to apply directly to a department. You have to commit even if you haven’t narrowed down your interests. You’re limited to a single department before you’ve discovered where your true enthusiasm for research lies.

Our laboratory rotations allow you the flexibility to identify the best department and laboratory for your doctoral research. You’ll explore several different fields of research before you decide on a lab — and experience that “eureka” moment of career discovery.

In the PhD Program in Biomedical Sciences, you can choose from a wide variety participating laboratories for your rotations. During the eight-week rotations, you will:

  • perform research projects
  • learn new laboratory techniques
  • meet other graduate students
  • collaborate with potential mentors

During your first year in the program, you will take up to six laboratory rotations in the fall and spring semesters. At the end of the first year, you will choose a rotation laboratory where you will conduct your doctoral dissertation research. 

Your PPBS Year (typical timeline)

Fall Term

August September October November December
  Fall 1 Rotation Fall 2 Rotation
Receive fall mentor options & begin conversations with faculty Submit mentor choices for fall 1 Submit mentor choices for fall 2 Receive spring mentor options & begin conversations with faculty
Submit mentor choices for spring 1
New student orientation & start of fall classes     Spring course registration prep

End of fall classes & start of winter break

Spring Term

January February March April May
Spring 1 Rotation Spring 2 Rotation          Spring 3 Rotation
  Submit mentor choices for spring 2   Submit mentor choices for spring 3  
Start of spring classes       End of spring classes
      Finalize Match and PhD White Coat Ceremony

Note: Spring 1 rotation begins immediately after the New Year.

Summer Term

May 15
Official start date in doctoral lab

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