Pharmacology Graduate Group

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Applicants apply via Biomedical Graduate Studies.

Graduate Record Examination

As of July 2018, Biomedical Graduate Studies at the University of Pennsylvania no longer requires or accepts GRE scores as part of its application.

TOEFL Scores

International students whose native language is not English must provide evidence of English proficiency as well. The PGG accepts TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) scores as an impartial measurement of facility in English.

Transcripts and Diplomas

All accepted candidates must hold a bachelor’s degree with adequate background in physical or natural science. The candidate should furnish official transcripts issued by the institution(s) attended and evidence of degree(s) earned.


All candidates must provide recommendations from three people who know the candidate well enough to evaluate intellectual capability, work habits, educational goals and extracurricular achievements.

Stipend and Tuition

All PGG students maintaining satisfactory academic progress receive financial support until they have completed all PhD requirements. This includes a twelve-month stipend plus tuition, fees, and health insurance. The amount of the stipend, which varies from year to year, will be $32,000 in the 2018-2019 fiscal year.

Some PGG students hold individual fellowships awarded by such organizations as the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), the Ford Foundation, and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America Foundation (now called PhRMA). Most pre-thesis students are subsidized by training grants awarded to the PGG or to other programs at the University by the NIH. Penn is once again the number one recipient of NIH funding. All students are encouraged to apply for graduate training fellowships during their graduate studies. A comprehensive list of fellowships and Ph.D. training support can be found

Students from foreign countries are not eligible for federal training grants during pre–thesis study. However, the Medical School, through the office of Biomedical Graduate Studies, offers funding for a few outstanding foreign scholars.

Additional support from the Department includes funds to attend local or national meetings while in pre-thesis status and some of the required textbooks.

Biomedical Imaging Program

The PGG participates in a newly incepted Ph.D. training program in biomedical imaging supported by Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the NIH via the Institute of Medicine and Engineering at Penn. Interested candidates are encouraged to inquire for the specifics of the program and application process here - and indicate their interest in the program when they apply to PGG. Due to limited number of slots, it is expected that one PGG student will enroll in this program.

Traveling Fellowship

Pre-doctoral students are eligible to apply for the Department of Pharmacology Solomon Erulkar Traveling Fellowship. This fellowship provides sufficient funds for the candidate to visit a laboratory of their choice both here and abroad to learn techniques relevant to their thesis research project.