Learning Outcomes

The goals of the M.S. program in translational biomedicine are to:

  • promote interaction and collaboration among researchers across the translational research spectrum;
  • enrich understanding of T1 research (laboratory), T2 research (application to evidence-based practice), T3 research (implementation and dissemination), and T4 research (population studies and policy development) for basic and clinical scientists to expand the relevance of their work in these areas; and
  • develop skills in ethical decision making, scientific leadership, team building, networking, and research program management.

The Master of Science program in translational biomedicine (TBM) requires a minimum of 34 s.h. of graduate credit plus a final project. Students must maintain a cumulative graduate g.p.a. of at least 3.00 in all UI coursework. The plan of study for students in the two-year program is tailored to their scientific goals and interests.

The program is designed to teach members of scientific teams how to move biomedical discoveries into clinical applications and beyond. It is tailored for individuals who have completed doctoral-level training in one area of biomedicine and wish to apply their expertise to the translational research spectrum. The program admits individuals who hold medical or graduate degrees (e.g., M.D., D.O., D.D.S., D.N.P., Ph.D., Pharm.D., D.V.M., or the equivalent) and are employed by the University of Iowa at the faculty ranks of associate professor, assistant professor, instructor/associate, fellow physician, or postdoctoral scholar/fellow.

The M.S. with a major in translational biomedicine requires the following coursework.

Core Courses

All of these:
TBM:5000Translational Biomedical Research9
TBM:5001Introduction to Translational Biomedicine3
TBM:5002Critical Thinking and Communication: Study Design and Commercialization1
TBM:5003Critical Thinking and Communication: Scientific Writing and Presentation Strategies1
TBM:5004Critical Thinking and Communication: Career Development and the Funding Process1
TBM:5005Critical Thinking and Communication: Leadership, Team Science, and Community Engagement1
BIOS:4120Introduction to Biostatistics3
BIOS:5120Regression Modeling and ANOVA in the Health Sciences3-4
or EPID:5241 Statistical Methods in Epidemiology
EPID:4400Epidemiology I: Principles3
EPID:6950Clinical Research Ethics2
Total Hours27-28


Students must earn a minimum of 6 s.h. in graduate-level elective coursework pertinent to their educational goals. Electives may be selected from the lists below, or students may obtain approval for other courses with program administration approval.


BIOS:5130Applied Categorical Data Analysis3
BIOS:5310Research Data Management3
BIOS:6210Applied Survival Analysis3
BIOS:6310Introductory Longitudinal Data Analysis3
BIOS:7600Advanced Biostatistics Seminar0-3

Device Development

BME:5101Biomaterials and Implant Design3
BME:5530Design of Circulatory Implants and Artificial Organs3
BME:5640Ergonomics of Occupational Injuries3

Drug Discovery

PCOL:4130Drug Mechanisms and Actions3
PCOL:5135Principles of Pharmacology1
PCOL:5136Pharmacogenetics and Pharmacogenomics1
PCOL:6203Pharmacology for Graduate Students6
PCOL:6250Advanced Problem Solving in Pharmacological Sciences1
PHAR:5512Drug Discovery and Mechanisms3


EPID:5214Meta-Analysis of Epidemiologic Studies3
EPID:5241Statistical Methods in Epidemiology4
EPID:5500Introduction to Clinical Epidemiology3
EPID:5560Introduction to Molecular Epidemiology3
EPID:5610Intermediate Epidemiology Data Analysis with SAS and R3
EPID:6400Epidemiology II: Advanced Methods4
EPID:6900Design of Intervention and Clinical Trials3


ACB:6200Special Topics in Genetics1
BIOL:3373Human Population Genetics and Variation3
BIOL:3713Molecular Genetics4
BIOL:5412Fundamental Genetics - Graduate Lecture3
GENE:6150Genetic Analysis of Biological Systems3
GENE:7191Human Molecular Genetics3
MMED:6250Mechanisms of Parasitism Journal Club1
PCOL:5136Pharmacogenetics and Pharmacogenomics1


BIOL:4386Introduction to Scientific Computing for Biologists3
CS:5110Introduction to Informatics3


ENTR:2000Entrepreneurship and Innovation3
ENTR:9400Evaluating Innovation Opportunities2-3
LAW:9717Iowa Medical Innovation Group Seminararr.
MED:8073Biomedical Innovation1
NURS:6553Seminar on Innovations4


BIOL:2753Introduction to Neurobiology3
NSCI:5212Foundations in Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience4
NSCI:5653Fundamental Neurobiology I3
PSY:6370Principles of Neuropsychology3

Final Project

In addition to completion of the 34 s.h. in required coursework, scholars must submit a final project. The project may be in one of the following formats.

  • A complete grant application for a K01, K08, K23, R01, R03, R21, a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs career development award, or the equivalent. The R03 completed as part of the required grant writing course may not be submitted as the final project.
  • An original research manuscript that is of acceptable quality for a peer-reviewed biomedical journal (the paper can be ready for submission, under review, or already published). The manuscript must contain the following components: a structured abstract; an introductory section that adequately frames the research question addressed; and a methodology section that sufficiently describes the following elements (study design, study sample, data collection strategies and sources, data elements, and data analysis), results of the study, and a discussion including a description of the relationship of the current findings to prior relevant research and/or policy implications of the findings and methodological limitations.

The Translational Biomedicine Program welcomes applicants who have diverse educational and scientific backgrounds and varied research interests. Applicants must have a strong interest and background in a health science profession and knowledge of basic sciences and medicine.

Applicants must meet the admission requirements of the Graduate College; see the Manual of Rules and Regulations on the Graduate College website.

Translational biomedicine applicants must:

  • have a doctoral-level degree in a biomedical discipline (e.g., M.D., D.O., D.D.S., D.N.P., Ph.D., Pharm.D., D.V.M., or the equivalent);
  • be employed by the University of Iowa as an associate professor, assistant professor, instructor/associate, a fellow physician, or a postdoctoral scholar/fellow;
  • be engaged in scientific research with a University of Iowa mentor who has funding from a peer-reviewed source (e.g. National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, and so forth);
  • hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited American college or university or an equivalent degree from an international institution, as determined by the University of Iowa Office of Admissions; and
  • have a g.p.a. of at least 3.00 or the international equivalent, as determined by the University of Iowa Office of Admissions.

Applicants whose first language is not English must score at least 100 (internet-based) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), a score of at least 7.0 with no subscore lower than 6.0 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or a score of at least 105 on the Duolingo English Test (DET).

Applicants must submit a curriculum vitae, a statement of research interest and career goals, and three letters of recommendation. One letter must be from the applicant’s UI research mentor; the program recommends that the second be a letter of support from the applicant’s department chair.

Students and their mentors must guarantee sufficient time for coursework and research. The program does not require a specific percent effort, but successful candidates would likely devote 50-75 percent of their time to a combination of coursework and research.

Sample Plan of Study

Sample plans represent one way to complete a program of study. Actual course selection and sequence will vary and should be discussed with an academic advisor. For additional sample plans, see MyUI.

Translational Biomedicine, M.S.

Plan of Study Grid (Manual)
Academic Career
Any SemesterHours
34 s.h. of graduate level coursework must be completed; graduate transfer credits allowed upon approval. More information is included in the General Catalog and on department website. a
In addition to completion of the required coursework, students must submit a final project. b
First Year
TBM:5000 Translational Biomedical Research 3
TBM:5001 Introduction to Translational Biomedicine 3
TBM:5002 Critical Thinking and Communication: Study Design and Commercialization 1
EPID:4400 Epidemiology I: Principles 3
TBM:5000 Translational Biomedical Research 3
TBM:5003 Critical Thinking and Communication: Scientific Writing and Presentation Strategies 1
BIOS:4120 Introduction to Biostatistics 3
EPID:6950 Clinical Research Ethics 2
Second Year
TBM:5004 Critical Thinking and Communication: Career Development and the Funding Process 1
Regression Modeling and ANOVA in the Health Sciences
or Statistical Methods in Epidemiology
3 - 4
Elective course c 3 - 4
TBM:5000 Translational Biomedical Research 3
TBM:5005 Critical Thinking and Communication: Leadership, Team Science, and Community Engagement 1
Elective course c 3
 Total Hours33-35
Students must complete specific requirements in the University of Iowa Graduate College after program admission. Refer to the Graduate College website and the Manual of Rules and Regulations for more information.
Complete one of the following formats: a complete grant application (K01, K08, K23, R01, R03, R21, or VA career award) or an original research manuscript (>2500 words) of published or in-publishable quality for a peer-reviewed journal. Additional requirements apply.
Elective coursework pertinent to educational goals and background may be selected from specific lists in Biostatistics, Device Development, Drug Discovery, Epidemiology, Genetics, Informatics, Innovation, and Neuroscience. Program administration approval required for other courses.