College of Medicine

Neuroscience - Graduate


graduate students


full-time faculty


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The Department of Neuroscience is comprised of a world-class team of scientists and educators who focus their research activities in the dynamic field of Neuroscience, with nearly seven million dollars a year in grant and contract support for biomedical research on the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nervous system. Research strengths include the study of spinal cord and brain injury and repair, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, stroke, epilepsy, and circadian biology.  Several faculty are affiliated with translational research centers, including the Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center (SCoBIRC), the Sanders Brown Center on Aging (SBCoA), the Center for Microelectrode Technology (CenMeT), the Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Spectroscopy Center (MRISC), the Center for Advanced Translational Stroke Science (CATSS), and the Epilepsy Center (EpiC). 

Doctor of Philosophy

The Department of Neuroscience offers a multidisciplinary graduate program leading to the Ph.D. degree. Combined M.D./Ph.D. programs also are available. An energetic faculty and flexible curriculum are directed toward giving the graduate competitive research and teaching credentials. Research in the Department of Neuroscience is largely oriented toward study of the nervous system. State-of-the-art approaches to the structure and function of neural, neuroendocrine, and reproductive systems represent particular strengths of the department. Prospective students should closely examine the faculty research interests in order to determine whether the program fits their interests. Recent updates of the graduate program are designed to emphasize the development of independent research skills and entry into the research laboratory as soon as possible. Entering graduate students spend the first year in basic coursework of the IBS (Integrated Biomedical Sciences) curriculum and research laboratory rotations. Advanced coursework, teaching experiences, and examinations typically are completed by the end of the second year. Thereafter, the student is primarily engaged in research. An active seminar program and opportunities for student presentations at national and international scientific meetings contribute to a stimulating environment.

Application Requirements for Ph.D. Program

Students are  first admitted to the Integrated Biomedical Sciences curriculum, an undifferentiated first-year core curriculum that serves as the entry point for six doctoral programs housed in the University of Kentucky College of Medicine.

  1. CV
    • Indicating any academic honors, publications, research experience and relevant work experience (since graduation--for those who have previously graduated from an undergraduate or graduate degree program). 
  2. Personal Statement
    • Indicate your research interest and goals for doctoral study and beyond.
  3. GRE 
  4. Three letters of recommendation

Applicants must meet the Graduate School admission requirements.

Application Deadlines

Fall: March 15