Pharmacology

Program Overview

The Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology offers graduate programs leading to the degrees of Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacology. Faculty conduct research in the following areas:

  • biochemical and molecular pharmacology
  • cardiovascular pharmacology
  • clinical pharmacology
  • drug addiction
  • drug metabolism, distribution, and pharmacokinetics
  • endocrine pharmacology
  • immunopharmacology
  • neuropharmacology
  • pharmacogenetics
  • psychopharmacology
  • receptor pharmacology
  • second messengers and signal transduction
  • toxicology

All MSc and PhD students are expected to undertake self-directed study and to demonstrate proficiency in pharmacological principles throughout the course of their graduate program.

Students may also be interested in the combined degree program in Medicine, Doctor of / Doctor of Philosophy (MD/PhD).

See video: Explore Graduate Programs at the Faculty of Medicine.

 


Quick Facts

Domestic International
Application payment deadline MSc, PhD:

1-May-2020

MSc, PhD:

15-Jan-2020

Supporting documents deadline MSc, PhD:

15-May-2020

MSc, PhD:

1-Feb-2020

Minimum admission average MSc:

final-year average of at least a B+

PhD:

B+ in master’s degree courses

MSc:

final-year average of at least a B+

PhD:

B+ in master’s degree courses

Direct entry option from bachelor's to PhD? :

Yes

:

Yes

Is a supervisor identified before or after admission? MSc, PhD:

After

MSc, PhD:

Before

If a supervisor is identified after admission (as per question above), is admission conditional upon securing a supervisor? MSc, PhD:

Yes

Is a supervisor assigned by the graduate unit or secured by the applicant? MSc, PhD:

Applicant

MSc, PhD:

Applicant

Program length (full-time only) MSc:
PhD:
MSc:
PhD:

Master of Science​

Program Description

In the MSc program, students are expected to undertake self-directed study and demonstrate proficiency in pharmacological principles throughout the course of the program. They are able to engage in one of two formats of study: 1) thesis-based study or 2) course-based study in the field of Applied Clinical Pharmacology.

In the thesis-based study, students are expected to think critically about scientific issues and develop a knowledge base in pharmacology while formulating hypotheses in a specific area of pharmacological research. They will test their hypotheses through active research and present their investigations in a thesis.

In the course-based Applied Clinical Pharmacology field, students will engage in research and hands-on training in academic, commercial, health care, and government settings. Courses will feature a breadth of fundamental and applied pharmacology topics with emphasis on translational research.

The MSc program can be taken on a full-time or part-time basis.

 

MSc Program (Thesis-Based Option)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • Appropriate bachelor's degree from a recognized university with a final-year average of at least a B+.

  • Applicants are normally required to have taken courses in physiology, biochemistry, or applied sciences sufficient to form a foundation for their work in pharmacology.

  • All successful applicants are responsible for obtaining research supervision and financial support before they are permitted to officially register in their program.

Program Requirements

  • Coursework. Students must complete PCL 1002Y Graduate Pharmacology (1.0 full-course equivalent [FCE]). The academic program may require additional coursework.

  • Each student will present a departmental seminar after approximately one year in the program.

  • Each student will participate in a research program and present the results of the investigation as a written thesis. The thesis will be evaluated and defended to the satisfaction of a thesis examination committee.

  • MSc students in pharmacology who intend to continue their studies in the PhD program may choose to be evaluated during their MSc oral defence.

  • Minimum period of one full year of residence, during which time the student is required to be on campus full-time and consequently in such geographical proximity as to be able to participate fully in the department's activities associated with the program.

Program Length

6 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S/F/W/S);
9 sessions part-time

Time Limit

3 years full-time;
6 years part-time



MSc Program (Applied Clinical Pharmacology Field, Course-Based Option)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology’s additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate bachelor’s degree from a recognized university with a final-year average of at least a B+.

  • Applicants are normally required to have taken courses in physiology and biochemistry, or applied sciences sufficient to form a foundation for their work in pharmacology.

Program Requirements

Coursework. Students must complete 8.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs). The curriculum is designed in an integrated fashion such that each subsequent course reinforces and builds upon prior knowledge. Students are expected to complete the required courses in Year 1. Elective courses may be taken in either year with practicum opportunities offered following successful completion of the required courses.

  • Required courses (6.0 FCEs), Year 1:

    • Fall session:

      • PCL 1001Y Systems Pharmacology

      • PCL 1002Y Graduate Pharmacology

      • PCL 1004Y Clinical Pharmacology

      • PCL 1402H Pharmacology and Toxicology in Drug Development

    • Winter session:

      • PCL 1001Y Systems Pharmacology

      • PCL 1002Y Graduate Pharmacology

      • PCL 1004Y Clinical Pharmacology

      • PCL 1491H Clinical Pharmacology: Principles in Practice

    • Spring session:

      • PCL 1100H Applied Skills in Clinical Pharmacology

      • PCL 1101H Technology, Techniques, and Translation in Pharmacology and Toxicology

    • Summer session:

      • PCL 2200Y0 Major Research Project.

Plus

  • Elective courses (2.0 FCEs). Elective coursework is selected through consultation with the program director with the intention to allow individual students to tailor their degree towards their interests and career goals. Popular elective courses include:

    • PCL 1012H Cognitive Neuropharmacology

    • PCL 1300H Selected Topics in Clinical Pharmacology

    • PCL 2101H0 Practicum in Clinical Pharmacology I (Credit/No Credit)

    • PCL 2102H0 Practicum in Clinical Pharmacology II (Credit/No Credit)

    • APS 1001H Project Management

    • BTC 1830H Medical and Scientific Challenges in Marketing New Therapeutics

    • CHL 5201H Biostatistics I

    • JNP 1014Y Interdisciplinary Toxicology

    • JPM 1005Y Behavioural Pharmacology

    • RSM 2017H Pharmaceutical Strategy.

Program Length

6 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S/F/W/S);
9 sessions part-time

Time Limit

​3 years full-time;
6 years part-time

0 Course that may continue over a program. The course is graded when completed.

 

MSc Program (Applied Clinical Pharmacology Field, Course-Based, Advanced-Standing Option)

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology’s additional admission requirements stated below.

  • An appropriate bachelor’s degree from a recognized university with a final-year average of at least a B+.

  • Applicants are normally required to have taken courses in physiology and biochemistry, or applied sciences sufficient to form a foundation for their work in pharmacology.

  • At the discretion of the program director, applicants who demonstrate significant pharmacology knowledge that overlaps with the Applied Clinical Pharmacology curriculum may be considered for advanced standing with either:

    • a bachelor’s degree specializing in pharmacology or biomedical toxicology or

    • MD degree (undergraduate medical education) with coursework in pharmacology.

Program Requirements

Coursework. Students must complete at least 4.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:

  • PCL 1002Y Graduate Pharmacology (1.0 FCE)

  • PCL 1004Y Clinical Pharmacology (1.0 FCE)

  • PCL 1100H Applied Skills in Clinical Pharmacology (0.5 FCE)

  • PCL 2200Y0 Major Research Project (1.0 FCE), taken in the Fall of Year 1.

  • At least one half-course elective (0.5 FCE) chosen from the following list, and upon recommendation of the program director:

    • PCL 1012H Cognitive Neuropharmacology

    • PCL 1300H Selected Topics in Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology

    • PCL 2101H Practicum in Clinical Pharmacology I

    • PCL 2102Y Practicum in Clinical Pharmacology II

    • BTC 1830H Medical and Scientific Challenges in Marketing New Therapeutics

    • CHL 5201H Biostatistics I (exclusion: LMP 1407H)

    • JFK 1120H Selected Topics in Drug Development I

    • JNP 1014Y Interdisciplinary Toxicology

    • JPM 1005Y Behavioural Pharmacology

    • LMP 1407H Introductory Biostatistics and Clinical Investigation (exclusion: CHL 5201H).

Program Length

3 sessions (typical registration sequence: F/W/S)

Time Limit

​3 years

0 Course that may continue over a program. The course is graded when completed.



Doctor of Philosophy

Program Description

The objective of the PhD degree is to have students possess a comprehensive understanding of the general area of pharmacology, in addition to specific expertise in their particular area of interest. They build on their knowledge of pharmacology so that they are able to think critically about specific areas in pharmacology. They should be able to formulate and design, as well as carry out and interpret investigations. Their findings should be publishable. They should show capacity for continuing significant contributions in pharmacology and for conducting independent research.

Applicants may enter the PhD program via one of three routes: 1) following completion of an appropriate master’s degree; 2) transfer from the University of Toronto MSc program; or 3) direct entry following completion of an appropriate bachelor’s degree.

 

PhD Program

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology's additional admission requirements stated below.

  • Appropriate master's degree from a recognized university with an average of at least a B+ in master's degree courses.

  • Applicants are normally required to have taken courses in physiology, biochemistry, or applied sciences sufficient to form a foundation for their work in pharmacology.

  • The department determines the eligibility of prospective students. The department assesses the student's ability for advanced study and independent research in ph​armacology.

  • Students transferring from the master's program in Pharmacology to the PhD program may receive full credit for master's courses towards doctoral course requirements, with the department's permission.

  • Well-qualified students with excellent research potential holding an appropriate bachelor's degree from a recognized university may be considered for direct entry to the PhD program. These applicants must have achieved a minimum final-year average of A–.

  • Applicants admitted without prior screening (i.e., with MSc degrees from other departments or universities, and students admitted with a bachelor's degree) will have their research ability reviewed after completion of one year. Upon successful completion of a departmental seminar and recommendation from the student's advisory committee, the student will be permitted to proceed with the PhD program.

  • The department must be satisfied about the applicant's background, accomplishments, and financial support.

  • All successful applicants are responsible for obtaining research supervision and financial support before they are permitted to officially register in their program.

Program Requirements

  • Coursework. Students must complete 3.0 full-course equivalents (FCEs) as follows:

    • PCL 1002Y Graduate Pharmacology (primary subject)

    • PCL 1003Y0 Seminars in Pharmacology (Credit/No Credit)

    • 1.0 additional FCE (secondary subject)

    • Any other courses advised by the Graduate Education Committee. The student's advisory committee should help the student determine the secondary course.

  • Pharmacology graduate faculty members also offer a variety of laboratory-based and tutorial-based learning modules to provide breadth to the student's training experience beyond their particular areas of research focus. During their program, PhD students are required to choose four breadth modules from among available options. 0.5 FCE from outside the student's research area may substitute for one of the five breadth modules. The student's advisory committee will assist the student in choosing suitable modules.

  • As part of the course requirement for PCL 1003Y0Seminars in Pharmacology, the student must present thesis material in seminars to the department on two occasions, one of which will take place between two and six months prior to the departmental Final Oral Examination.

  • Each student will participate in a research program and present the results of the investigation as a written thesis. The thesis must be orally defended to the satisfaction of a thesis examination committee.

  • Minimum period of two full years of residence, during which time the student is required to be on campus full-time and consequently in such geographical proximity as to be able to participate fully in the department's activities associated with the program.

Program Length

4 years full-time; 5 years transfer-from-master's; 5 years direct-entry

Time Limit

6 years full-time; 7 years transfer-from-master's; 7 years direct-entry

0 Course that may continue over a program. The course is graded when completed.



Nora Tataryan

“I have always incorporated activist engagement into my field of study. ”

Nora Tataryan
PhD Student, Women & Gender Studies
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