The Designated Emphasis, referred to as the “DE”, is a specialization offered adjunct to affiliated doctoral degrees for students with research interests in computational biology and genomics. DE students receive a solid foundation in the different facets of computational/genomic research and the ensuing competitive edge for the most desirable jobs in academia and industry, which increasingly require interdisciplinary training. Upon successful completion of the dissertation, the student’s final transcript will include the designation, “Ph.D. in [Home Program] with a Designated Emphasis in Computational and Genomic Biology.”
Students in the following doctoral programs are eligible to apply:
Bioengineering Graduate Group (Berkeley campus based students only)
Biophysics Graduate Group
Biostatistics Graduate Group
Computer Science Division, Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Integrative Biology Department
Microbiology Graduate Group
Molecular and Cell Biology Department
Plant Biology Graduate Group
School of Public Health (Graduate Groups in Epidemiology and Environmental Health Sciences)
No additional time can be added to the normative time of your home department; however, due to the interdisciplinary nature of training and research in the Designated Emphasis, and depending on the student’s background, completion of the DE could add one, possibly two, additional semesters to the student’s total program.
The DE curriculum consists of set coursework, which may be either independent from or an integral part of a student’s Associated Program. Prior to the qualifying examination, students are required to pass with a grade of B or better 3 pre-selected classes spanning the following categories, with at least one from outside of the student’s home degree program. Students will also be required to participate in the 2 semester (Fall/Spring) Computational Biology Doctoral Seminar (CMPBIO 293).
- Computer Science and Engineering: CS61A (Students will need to complete CS61B and CS70 or the equivalent in order to enroll in upper division CS courses)
- Biostatistics, Mathematics, and Statistics: STAT 201A&B (strongly preferred, though Stat 134 or PH 142 may be substituted)
- Biology: please select an appropriate biology course from the list linked below
- Computational Biology: CMPBIO 293, Doctoral Seminar [course not yet listed, please register for CMPBIO 295 in interim]
Substitutes for Stat 201A&B or CS61A may be considered, but require prior approval. These courses have been selected as they best provide students with a broad and consistent foundation in computational biology.
Recommended Coursework (link active)
Seminars, Program Activities & Retreat
Students must attend the annual Computational Biology Retreat (generally held in November) as well as regular seminar series, or equivalent, as designated by the Curriculum Committee. Students are also strongly encouraged to attend or volunteer with program events during Orientation, Recruitment, Symposia, etc. Available travel funds will be dependent upon participation.
Qualifying Examination and Dissertation
The qualifying examination and dissertation committees must include at least one, but preferably two, Core faculty members from the Computational Biology Graduate Group. The faculty member(s) may either represent the home department or serve as an outside member (Academic Senate Representative). The Qualifying Examination must include examination of knowledge within the area of Computational and Genomic Biology. The Comp Bio Doctoral Seminar must be completed before the QE, as it will be important preparation for the exam.
How to Apply
**For 2016, applications are due August 31, 2016, but interested students must register for and attend the first meetings of Cmpbio 293 to be considered.**
Applications are due July 15th, the year (approx 2 semesters) before the qualifying exam takes place. Students should are advised to notify both the graduate affairs officer (GSAO) of the home department and the DE program coordinator of their intent to apply as early as possible.
Hard copies of the following materials must be submitted to Kate Chase, Graduate Program Coordinator, to apply to the DE in Computational and Genomic Biology:
- DE CGB Petition (.pdf)
- Graduate Petition for Change of Major or Degree Goal (.pdf)
- Letter of recommendation from the student’s faculty advisor
- One page letter of intent summarizing the student’s background in computational and genomic biology, and outlining short- and long-term training and research goals in the field
- Most recent copies of all undergraduate and graduate transcripts
- The student’s curriculum vitae
Please note that review may take up to one month.
For 2016-17 applications, we will endeavor to review within 2 weeks.