Professor examining samples in her lab with Graduate student using microscope.

The MS Biomedical Sciences program provides an advanced level of training for biomedical scientists, with emphasis on developing an understanding of the mechanisms of human disease and providing broad-based training in biomedical laboratory research.

Program Type


Program Format

On Campus
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Gain Experience

The MS Biomedical Sciences program offers a diverse array of classes and research opportunities. As a student in this program, you will gain experience in selected areas of emphasis, such as immunology, the pathogenesis of infectious diseases, toxicology, pharmacology, neurodegeneration and cancer biology.

Student looking at a vial in a biomedical sciences lab

The Biomedical Sciences Department offers a program of graduate education providing an advanced level of study for students interested in biology as it relates to human health, medicine and disease.

  • Major emphasis in the program is placed on developing an understanding of the mechanisms involved in human diseases and providing broad-based training in both basic and applied biomedical sciences.
  • The MS degree has two tracks. You may apply for entry into our research-based Thesis Track or our coursework-based Non-Thesis Track to best fit your career goals.
    • The Thesis Track requirements include a thesis based on hypothesis-driven research conducted by the student to enhance problem-solving abilities and the student’s capacity to function more effectively in the biomedical field.
    • The Non-Thesis Track is designed for students who want to gain knowledge in the biomedical sciences by taking courses focused on human health and disease without a research component. This track may be suitable for a variety of students, including those who currently work in a laboratory setting and wish to obtain a higher degree and those requiring a degree beyond the bachelor’s level to teach.
  • You will work with distinguished faculty, all of whom hold their PhDs, come from diverse research backgrounds, actively engage in research and perform active service activities.

Successful Alumni

The School of Biomedical Sciences & Health Care Administration has many successful alumni. These alumni have taken their degrees and have excelled in their careers.

Visit our Alumni page and be inspired by where a health sciences degree can take you.

An applicant must meet Graduate School requirements plus the following requirements to be considered for admission:

1. The program primarily enrolls individuals with backgrounds in biomedical sciences or related fields who have completed a bachelor’s degree at an accredited institution. For students entering without a degree in a related area, the faculty determines deficiencies to be overcome prior to admission. Applications will not be reviewed until all required materials are obtained by the program. All completed applications received prior to Feb. 1 will receive consideration for enrollment beginning the following summer term for the Non-Thesis Track or fall semester for the Thesis Track. Completed applications received after Feb. 1 may be considered if space is available in the program. Students may enroll on a full-time or a part-time basis.

2. Applicants may be admitted to regular status if their grade point average is the equivalent of 2.75 or above (scale of 4.0). Averages below 2.75 may be considered for admission on a probationary basis, in which case particular attention is given to the last 60 hours completed in the undergraduate program, with special emphasis on performance in biomedical science-related courses. Probationary status is removed after successful completion of the first eight graduate credits with a grade point average of 3.0 or above.

3. Graduate Record Examination scores on the General Test are required.

4. Three letters of reference, preferably from academic and/or research sources or supervisors, must be provided.

5. The applicant must provide a statement of not more than 1,000 words providing career objectives and reasons for seeking a degree in the UWM Biomedical Sciences Graduate program.

6. Students must identify, at the time of applying, whether they seek enrollment in the Thesis Track or Non-Thesis Track. Students wishing to change tracks after admission must receive approval of the program.

The minimum degree requirement is 32 graduate credits.

Thesis Track

Fifteen (15) core curricular credits and a minimum of eight credits in research (BMS 799) must be taken. Substitutions to these courses require approval of the program.

CodeTitle Credits
BMS 710Seminar in Biomedical Sciences (1 credit per semester; 3 credits total)3
BMS 717Laboratory Technology-Theory and Practice 22
BMS 718Experimental Design and Research in Biomedical Sciences1
BMS 750 or
BMS 751
Infection and Immunity or
Choose one of the following:3
BMS 705 Molecular Pathology
BMS 756 Current Concepts in Cancer
BMS 765 Molecular Pathophysiology
Choose one of the following:3
PSYCH 510G Advanced Psychological Statistics
KIN 702 Statistical Analysis in the Health Sciences
PH 702
Introduction to Biostatistics
PH 712 Probability and Statistical Inference
BMS 799 Research in Biomedical Sciences8
Total Credits23

Course List

The remaining none credits required for the degree are electives, of which at least six must be taken for graduate credit from within the BMS Program. Program approval is required for BMS 590 credits to be applied toward the degree. BMS 599: Independent Study does not count toward completion of the degree. No more than three credits of BMS 999: Advanced Independent Study will be counted for the Thesis Track.

Non-Thesis Track

Eleven (11) core curricular credits, as well as two credits for the capstone project, must be taken. Substitutions to these courses require approval of the program.

BMS 710 Seminar in Biomedical Sciences (1 credit per semester; 2 credits total)2
BMS 750 or
BMS 751
Infection and Immunity or
Choose one of the following: 3
BMS 705 Molecular Pathology
BMS 756 Current Concepts in Cancer
BMS 765 Molecular Pathophysiology
BMS 610G or
or BMS 615G
Pharmacology or
Cellular and Molecular Toxicology
BMS 890 Capstone Project2
Total Credits 13

Course List

Of the remaining 19 credits required for the degree, a minimum of 10 credits (excluding BMS 999) must be taken for graduate credit within the BMS program. Up to nine credits may be taken as elective courses at the graduate level. These elective courses may be within the BMS program or outside of the program. BMS 999 will not be counted toward the Non-Thesis Track without approval from the program.

Portrait of Jennifer Doll
  • Associate Professor, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs , Biomedical Sciences, Office of the Dean
Portrait of Janis Eells
  • Professor, Biomedical Sciences
Portrait of Elizabeth Liedhegner
  • Assistant Professor, Biomedical Sciences
Portrait of Dean Nardelli
  • Associate Professor, Chair, Biomedical Sciences Department, (Biomedical Sciences and Diagnostic Medical Imaging Programs)
Portrait of Troy Skwor
  • Assistant Professor, Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program Coordinator, Biomedical Sciences
Portrait of Melissa Tesch
  • Laboratory Manager, Biomedical Sciences