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Prospective Students

As biomedical research moves forward in the 21st century, the lines between traditional scientific disciplines are almost gone. Accomplished researchers must possess more than an in-depth knowledge of one specific field – they need a broad understanding of principles and techniques from disciplines across the biomedical sciences. Since 1992, graduate students at Vanderbilt have received a comprehensive educational foundation for a successful career in biomedical research through the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences (IGP).

We provide a personalized, flexible approach to accommodate a wide range of educational backgrounds and specific interests. We have always had the goal of providing our students the strongest possible cross-disciplinary education, and we constantly update and modernize our topics, content, and approach to our curriculum.

With multiple core facilities and with the resources provided by the Biomedical, Research, Education, and Training (BRET) Office, students are supported in multiple ways throughout their graduate training.

The Interdisciplinary Graduate Program at Vanderbilt University provides students with a supportive and  highly collaborative environment for pursuing advanced studies in biomedical sciences. As a result, our students are able to gain a broad perspective on their research and develop a deep understanding of the complex issues facing the field today. Please explore our website to learn more!

If you have a background mathematics, physics, chemistry, computer science, or engineering but limited biology, you may be interested in our sister program, the Quantitative and Chemical Biology program (QCB). This Ph.D. track, multidisciplinary program introduces elements of biology to students who wish to pursue a doctoral degree at the interface of the chemical, physical, and biological sciences. The curriculum prepares students for research careers in any area of biomedical research. Many students choose to work in interdisciplinary fields such as chemical biology, structural biology, imaging sciences, molecular and cellular biophysics, or systems biology.

Our online application for Fall 2025 will open on August 1, 2024.

Learn more about our Application Process and Requirements here.

The First Year IGP Program

The goals of the first year program are to provide students with a strong, broad background in biomedical and biological sciences and research methods. Courses are based on the most recent literature in the subject fields of the sections of the course. This means that lectures and discussions are heavily dependent on recently-published journal articles.

Students have the flexibility to explore their research interests from the offerings of the 11 participating departments and programs prior to choosing a laboratory for their dissertation research. Students rotate in four laboratories in their first year; at the end of that first year, students will join a department or program and become students in that department or program. Information on the research faculty are doing can be found on the individual department and program websites, and the BRET Training Faculty can be found here. Faculty profiles may be incomplete, but you can learn more by investigating their pages in their departments.

Please visit IGP Training Program to learn more about the first year curriculum.

Graduate School Fairs and Online Information Sessions

I will be holding online info sessions and Zoom workshops on applying for Biomedical Graduate Programs throughout the Fall. Check back in August to register for the topic, date, and time of your choosing!

Would you like to meet a representative of our Biomedical Graduate programs? We would love to meet you too! We will be attending the following Graduate School Fairs, some of which will be virtual and free for prospective students. Please stop by so we can get to know you. You can also contact us with any questions you may have.

Date  Graduate School Fairs and Links
March 15  University of Maryland McNair
April 8-10  National Council on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) – Long Beach, CA
July 17  NIH 2024 Graduate & Professional School Fair – in Person
July 26 – 28  Leadership Alliance National Symposium, Hartford CT
July 24 – 26  UCLA McNair,
August  Virtual IGP/QCB info session at 4 pm Central Time
September 5 – 6   University of New Mexico McNair, Albuquerque, NM
September   Virtual IGP/QCB info session at 4 pm Central Time
September   Rhodes College, Memphis, TN
October   Virtual IGP/QCB info session at 4 pm Central Time
October 31 – November 2   SACNAS National Conference, Phoenix, Arizona
November   Virtual IGP/QCB info session at 4 pm Central Time
November   Meyerhoff Scholars Program, UMBC, Baltimore MD
November 13-16   ABRCMS Conference, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania



At Vanderbilt University, we hold the sincere belief that fostering the advancement of and respect for equity, diversity, and inclusion of all students, faculty, and staff benefits all members of our community. To bring to life our vision of inclusive excellence, we are intentional about recruiting, retaining, and supporting diverse and underrepresented groups of students. We encourage individuals from all populations to apply to our graduate programs. The university does not discriminate against individuals on the basis of race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, socio-economic background, or disability.