School of Medicine


Oncological Sciences

Ph.D. in Oncological Sciences

Program Purpose

The program prepares students to be independent scientists in the general area of cancer biology. Students should develop deep knowledge in least one area of modern cancer biology, e.g. transcriptional regulation and epigenetics, cancer genetics, animal models of gastrointestinal, breast and lung cancers and cancer cell biology including signaling, apoptosis and metabolism. Training is primarily provided through research in a productive and stimulating laboratory environment. This individualized training is supplemented with a range of opportunities to learn many diverse aspects of cancer biology through organized journal clubs, joint group meetings, to develop skills to critically evaluate research literature and proposals, and a portfolio of significant research accomplishments. Students should be prepared to conduct independent research, for example as a postdoctoral and subsequent independent position, and for a range of academic, government, and commercial positions that demand a high level of independence and evaluative skills, communication skills and research experience.

Learning Outcomes

  • Students should demonstrate a broad understanding of the mechanisms that underlie tumorigenesis and the approaches to conduct cutting edge research in cancer biology.
  • Students should demonstrate a deep understanding of at least one area of contemporary research in cancer biology.
  • Students should be able to critically evaluate contemporary cancer research literature and cancer research programs.
  • Students should be able to develop and defend, in writing and orally, an original research proposal in the broad area of cancer biology.
  • Students should accomplish original research that provides new insights the molecular underpinnings of cancer.
  • Students should be prepared to design, justify, and conduct research at least one area of contemporary cancer biology with a high degree of independence.