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School of Medicine

VCU School of Medicine

Welcome to VCU School of Medicine

Certificate Curriculum

Welcome to Certificate Curriculum

A total of 27 credits are required to graduate.  Of the 27 credits, 15 are required through 1 semester of Physiology, and 2 semesters of Biochemistry.  The remaining 12 credits are satisfied through approved electives.   Students may take more than the required number of credits.

Required and elective courses are drawn from departments within the School of Medicine: Anatomy and Neurobiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Human and Molecular Genetics, Microbiology and Immunology, Pharmacology and Toxicology, and Physiology and Biophysics. All courses are held on the MCV campus.  Students with varying interests may choose other courses with the approval of the Program Director.

 

CoursesCredits
Fall Required Courses  
BIOC/MICR 503 Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology 5
PHIS 501 Physiology 5
Spring Required Courses  
BIOC/MICR 504 Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology 5
  _____
15
Fall Electives (Choose at least 5 credits; courses not appearing on this list may be considered for electives, upon approval).  
ANAT 611 Histology 5
IBMS 690 Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences Seminar 1
MICR 505 Immunobiology 3
NEUS 609 Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience 4
  _____
5
Spring Electives
 
ANAT 529 Functional Neuroanatomy 2
ANAT 610 Systems Neuroscience 4
ANAT 612 Embryology 2
HGEN 620 Principles of Human Behavioral Genetics 3
IBMS 690 Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences Seminar 1
MICR 618 Molecular Mechanisms of Bacterial Pathogenesis 3
PHIS 512 Cardiac Function in Health and Disease 3
PHIS 691 Special Topics: GI Function in Health and Disease 3
[DEPT] 697 Directed Research 3
  _____
7
Total Credits _____
27

FALL

Required Courses

BIOC/MICR 503 Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology (5)
Continuous courses 503/504 are taught in sequential semesters; 5 lecture hours. 5 credits. Prerequisites: undergraduate organic and physical chemistry, or permission of instructor. A comprehensive introductory course that describes basic biochemistry and reviews current concepts of modern cell and molecular biology.

PHIS 501 Physiology (5)
One-semester course; 5 lecture hours. 5 credits. Prerequisites: Biology, chemistry, and physics. A comprehensive study of the function of mammalian organ systems, designed primarily for graduate students.

Elective Courses (suggested electives - others upon approval)

ANAT 611 Histology (5)
Semester course; 5 lecture hours. 5 credits. A study of the basic light and electron microscopic structure of cells, tissues, and organs. Emphasis on correlating structure with function.

IBMS 690 Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences Seminar (1)
1 credit. Students attend ten basic science or clinical seminars of their choosing and submit a brief summmary for each to the CERT Program Administrator.

MICR 505 Immunobiology (3)
Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. A survey of immunobiology as a total host response to foreign agents, covering the nature of antigens and antibodies, antigen-antibody reactions, immunocompetent cells, allergic reactions, tumor immunology, transplantation immunology, immunological diseases and immunogenetics

NEUS 609 Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience (4)
Semester course; 4 lecture hours. 4 credits. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. Designed as an interdisciplinary introduction to the cellular and molecular aspects of central nervous system function. The basic principles of neuroscience including neuronal structure, electrical properties of single neurons, cell biology of neurotransmitter release and postsynaptic function will be discussed, followed by intracellular signaling in neurons, gene regulation, transgenic model systems, glia, neuronal development, basic neurochemistry, and molecular and cellular aspects of motor, sensory and integrative function. The course will conclude with lectures on various aspects of neural injury and disease, including traumatic brain injury, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.

SPRING

Required Course

BIOC/MICR 504 Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology (5)
Continuation of BIOC/MICR504; 5 lecture hours. 5 credits. Prerequisites: undergraduate organic and physical chemistry, or permission of instructor. A comprehensive introductory course that describes basic biochemistry and reviews current concepts of modern cell and molecular biology.

Elective Courses

ANAT 529 Functional Neuroanatomy (1)
Semester course; 2 laboratory hours. 1 credit. Survey via models, computer programs, discussion of morphological and functional aspects of the human nervous system with emphasis on sensory integration and motor activity.

ANAT 610 Systems Neuroscience (4)
Semester course; 4 lecture hours. 4 credits. A study the neural circuits and function of systems in the central nervous system. Topics include sensory perception and integration, neural control of reflexes and voluntary movement, as well as a neural-systems approach to understanding certain diseases.

ANAT 612 Human Embryology (2)
3-week course.
2 lecture hours. 2 credits. Lectures present an overview of human embryology covering fertilization, implantation and the early stages of embryogenesis. Major organ systems including the gastrointestinal, cardiovascular and urogenital are covered, as well as the development of the limbs, pharynx, face and skull. In addition, students prepare a report on a selected topic in embryology affecting human health.

HGEN 620 Principles of Human Behavioral Genetics (3)
Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. The theory of genetic and nongenetic transmission considered in relation to the design, analysis, and interpretation of studies to identify the principal genetic and environmental causes of behavioral variation. Included will be analysis of intelligence, personality, social attitudes, and psychiatric disorders.

IBMS 690 Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences Seminar (1)
1 credit. Students attend ten basic science or clinical seminars of their choosing and submit a brief summary for each to the CERT Program Administrator.

MICR 618 Molecular Mechanisms of Bacterial Pathogenesis (3)
Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisites: undergraduate-level courses in microbiology or microbial physiology, immunology and molecular genetics. The goals of this comprehensive course are to explore in detail the virulence mechanisms of microbes and the response of the infected host. The focus will be on important bacterial pathogens. Formerly MICR 518

PHIS 512 Cardiac Function in Health and Disease (3)
Semester course; 3 lecture hours. 3 credits. Prerequisite: PHIS 501 or permission of instructor. A comprehensive study of cell and system cardiovascular physiology with pathophysiological implications, primarily designed for professional students.

PHIS 691 Special Topics in Physiology (3), GI Function in Health and Disease
Semester course; 1-4 credits by section. Prerequisite: PHIS  501 (or taken concurrently). Lectures, tutorial studies and/or library assignments in selected areas of advanced study not available in other courses or as part of the research training.

[DEPT] 697 Directed Research (Research Department to be assigned) (3)
Semester course; 3 credits. Consists of research in a School of Medicine laboratory with a faculty member. Students are in the lab 10-15 hrs/week, participate in lab meetings, and may be part of grants and publications arising from the research. Students registering for 697 courses must register in-person with the Registration Office in order to receive the correct number of credits.

Research Option

Certificate students who continue into a second year for the M.S. degree (CERT/MS) program will work closely with an individual faculty member in a particular department. Research mentorship begins in the first year by taking a spring elective lab rotation in Directed Research (3 credits). In their second year, CERT/MS students focus almost exclusively on experiments in their mentor's laboratory, with minimal course work.