Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies: Specialization in Bioinformatics
Program Executive Committee Chair
Eric C. Rouchka, D.Sc.
The Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Program in Bioinformatics (the Bioinformatics Program) trains students in bioinformatics for careers in research, education, and industry.
Defined as "the field of science in which biology, computer science, and information technology merge to form a single discipline", bioinformatics is a broad and diverse domain, ranging from management of biological research databases to computational approaches to biomedical modeling and data analysis.
The Bioinformatics Program focuses on those aspects of bioinformatics that reflect the research interests and experience of the Program's faculty. These include basic research in biostatistical methodology, computer science and mathematical modeling with applications to biochemistry, cell biology and molecular biology. The following areas have been identified and named by the Bioinformatics Program faculty to represent the focus application areas of the Program:
- Biomedical and Natural Sciences
- Computational Sciences
- Mathematics and Statistics
Students in the Bioinformatics Program specialize in one of the three focus application areas and graduate with cutting-edge expertise in this area and working knowledge in the other two focus application areas.
 "Just the Facts: A Basic Introduction to the Science Underlying NCBI Resources." National Center for Biotechnology Information. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/About/primer/bioinformatics.html. Revised: March 29, 2004
Graduate Studies -- Ph.D.
To earn the Doctor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies: Specialization in Bioinformatics, a student is required to successfully complete the following:
- Core coursework in the focus application areas
- Required coursework in the student's area of specialization
- Elective courses in the student's area of specialization
- Qualifying examination
- Presentation and defense of dissertation
- Good standing requires that the student maintain a minimum 3.0 grade point average.
Upon successful completion of the written and oral portions of the qualifying examination, the examination committee will recommend acceptance into Ph.D. candidacy. Successful completion of the dissertation and its presentation and defense is established by the approval of the student's dissertation committee and the approval of the chair of the sponsoring department and the program chair.
Programs of Study
Course requirements for the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Degree Program in Bioinformatics consist of 16 core credit hours (that will be conditional based upon focus area) and 21 credit hours derived from a combination of required courses from a chosen focus area and electives from each of the three focus areas. Students with an appropriate background in the biomedical and natural sciences may petition to substitute a course in either the Computational Sciences or Mathematics and Statistics focus for the core course BIOC 545 Biochemistry I, and a corresponding course in either the Computational Sciences or Mathematics and Statistics for MBIO 667 Graduate Cell Biology, thus maintaining 16 core credit hours. Following acceptance into a focus area, students will be required to complete three courses totaling at least nine hours from the declared focus area. At least four additional elective courses (12 credit hours) will be selected from available elective courses, with the provision that two elective courses must be selected in each of the other two focus areas. The Program of Study will be determined by the student and approved by both an advisor residing in a declared focus area department and the Executive Committee. The following tables list the required courses for the core as well as the required and elective courses in each of the focus areas. Students must accumulate at least nine credit hours of dissertation
Core Course Work
|Responsible Conduct of Research:|
Survival Skills and Research Ethics
|Graduate Cell Biology|
|Computational Cognitive Science I|
|Introduction to Bioinformatics|
|Statistical Methods for Bioinformatics|
*All courses are required. +CHEM 645 may be substituted. Students may take either the BIOC 545/BIOC547 or CHEM 645/647 sequence but are not allowed to take the sequence BIOC 545/CHEM647 or CHEM 645/BIOC547. #Cross-listed as CECS 590-02.
Elective Courses in Mathematics and Statistics
#Credit only for one: MATH 561/PHST 661; MATH 562/PHST 662
Elective Courses in Biomedical and Natural Sciences
#Credit only for one: CHEM 645/BIOC 645, CHEM 647/BIOC 647. Students may take either the BIOC 545/BIOC547 or CHEM 645/647 sequence but are not allowed to take the sequence BIOC 545/CHEM647 or CHEM 645/BIOC547.
Elective Courses in Computational Sciences
Participating Faculty for the Bioinformatics Program have primary appointments in various departments across the University, including:
- College of Arts and Sciences: Deparments of Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Psychological and Brian Sciences
- J.B. Speed School of Engineering: Department of Computer Engineering and Computer Science
- School of Medicine: Departments of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
- School of Publich Health and Information Sciences: Departments of Bioinformatics and Biostatistics, Environmental Health and Occupational Health Sciences, and Epidemiology and Population Health
Eric C. Rouchka, Executive Committee Chair
D.Sc., Washington University in St. Louis
Associate Professor, Computer Engineering and Computer Science
Theodore S. Kalbfleisch, Executive Committee Vice-Chair
Ph.D., Boston University
Assistant Professor, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Nigel G.F. Cooper
Ph.D., University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center
Professor, Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology
Ph.D., The University of Texas at Dallas
Associate Professor, Mathematics
Ph.D., Duke University
Professor, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
Ph.D., Northwestern University
Associate Professor, Epidemiology and Population Health
Ph.D., University of Delhi
Professor, Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology
Ph.D., Arizona State University
Assistant Professor, Mathematics
Ph.D., University of Missouri-Rolla
Assistant Professor, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
Ph.D., Northwestern University
Assistant Professor, Epidemiology and Population Health
Ph.D., University of Illinois
Professor, Psychological and Brain Sciences
Juw Won Park
Ph.D., University of Iowa
Assistant Professor, Computer Engineering and Computer Science
Ph.D., University of Chicago
Jeffrey C. Petruska
Ph.D., University of Florida
Assistant Professor, Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology
Ph.D., University of Waterloo
Professor, Bioinformatics and Biostatistics
Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University
Associate Professor, Biology
Ph.D., Purdue University
Associate Professor, Chemistry
Executive Committee Members
Eric Rouchka, D.Sc.
Executive Committee Chair (8/15/2011-6/30/2017)
Speed School of Engineering Representative (8/15/2011-6/30/2017)
Ted Kalbfleisch, Ph.D.
Executive Commmittee Vice-Chair (8/15/2011-6/30/2017) School Of Medicine Representative (8/15/2011-6/30/2017)
Nigel Cooper, Ph.D.
School of Medicine Representative (7/1/2015-6/30/2018)
Rachel Neal, Ph.D.
School of Public Health Representative (7/1/2015-6/30/2018)
John Pani, Ph.D.
College of Arts and Sciences Representative (7/1/2014-6/30/2017)
Shesh Rai, Ph.D.
School of Public Health Representative (7/1/2014-6/30/2017)
David Schultz, Ph.D.
College of Arts and Sciences Representative (7/1/2015-6/30/2018)
Ph.D. students are encouraged to apply for the program through the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies.
Application information can be found at: http://graduate.louisville.edu/apply
For more information about the Ph.D. program, contact Eric Rouchka