Animal and Nutritional Sciences (Ph.D.)

The Ph.D. in animal and nutritional sciences trains students to gain advanced knowledge and develop research expertise in such areas as the cellular and molecular biology of various nutrients, nutritional physiology and biochemistry, vascular biology and cardiovascular disease, immunology and genetics, obesity and diabetes, dairy nutrition, human nutrition, reproductive physiology, and endocrinology. It prepares students for future careers in technical consulting, education, and research in academic, industrial, and government institutions.

Students with appropriate academic training at the baccalaureate or master's degree level will design a program of study in conjunction with a faculty guidance committee. The student will advance to candidacy after successful completion of all relevant graduate courses and passing a qualifying examination conducted by the guidance committee, which will contain oral and/or written components at the discretion of the committee members. The "guidance" committee for doctoral students will consist of a minimum of five members, three of whom must be from within the Animal and Nutritional Sciences Program; at least one member must be from outside the program. After the student's advancement to candidacy for the Ph.D. degree, a doctoral committee (which can be different from the guidance committee) will be appointed to supervise and approve the dissertation.

The dissertation must be based on original hypothesis­-driven research of publishable quality. A public presentation of the dissertation research findings will be followed by a final examination, which will be primarily an oral defense of the dissertation. The candidate will be required to serve as a teaching assistant for a minimum of two semesters or to teach a course for one semester. Skills in communicating scientific information will be fostered by presenting one seminar during each year of enrollment. This requirement could include the dissertation defense seminar.