Graduate Training in Medical Science (GTMS)

Welcome to the Penn Graduate Training in Medical Science (GTMS) Certificate Program

Acknowledging that the future of translational research depends upon the basic science community being well versed in human disease, Penn’s Biomedical Graduate Studies Program (BGS), in conjunction with the Perelman School of Medicine, has created the Graduate Training in Medical Science (GTMS) Certificate Program. 

The GTMS curriculum integrates focused medical education into the doctoral curriculum and experience, affording PhD students an appreciation of medicine and human biology not formerly available. The program aims to promote clinically relevant research by producing basic scientists who not only have a clearer understanding of human biology and pathology, but who can effectively interact with clinical scientists to tackle medically relevant research problems. Upon successful completion of the program, students receive a Certificate in the Medical Sciences in addition to their doctoral degree.

The University of Pennsylvania was the first institution in the country to offer formal training in the biomedical sciences. For the past 240 years, Penn has been known for its ability to successfully integrate science and medicine. Today, BGS is the academic hub for biomedical graduate education at Penn comprising seven interdepartmental cross-school graduate groups: Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, Cell and Molecular Biology, Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Genomics and Computational Biology, Immunology, Neuroscience, and Pharmacology. Over 600 scientists and educators represent more than 30 basic science and clinical departments in five schools throughout the University. Approximately 40% of the faculty are MDs or MD/PhDs housed within clinical departments, making Penn uniquely qualified to train tomorrow’s leaders in translational research.

Bridging the gap between the lab and the clinic

Having a textbook understanding of medicine is not enough for successful translational scientists. Translational science also relies on an understanding of how to work effectively with clinicians, and what problems matter most to medical professionals. To become better translational scientists, our students participate in clinical clerkships, which provide first hand experience in a clinical setting.

Bringing together a diverse range of medical research fields

Our program consists of students from all graduate groups under the Biomedical Graduate Studies umbrella at the Perelman School of Medicine at Penn. We bring together students in Biochemistry & Molecular Biophysics, Cell & Molecular Biology, Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Genomics & Computational Biology, Immunology, Neuroscience, and Pharmacology.

Providing a greater depth of medical education for our PhD candidates

As part of the certificate program, our students participate in additional medically related coursework, and attend GTMS seminars which discuss the bleeding edge of translational medicine. Our students also take part in an annual symposium where they spend two days meeting with students from other universities to discuss science and medicine.

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