MD/PhD and Other Joint Programs

Many professional schools offer students enrolled in their programs the opportunity to earn both the professional degree (e.g., MD, DO, DDS, etc.) and some other graduate degree (e.g., PhD, MPH, MS, etc.) in a joint program. Many of these programs require that a student be admitted to and enrolled in two separate colleges in the same university. All of these programs are highly competitive. MD/PhD programs aare aimed at students who wish to pursue clinical research upon graduation (as opposed to a purely clinical career). For more information about physician scientists, visit the American Physician Scientists Association. The AAMC (American Association of Medical Colleges) has a comprehensive listing of combined degree programs at https://aamc.org. The AACOM (American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine) maintains a list of joint DO programs.

If you are looking for a career that combines traditional clinical training with basic biomedical research, you may wish to consider pursuing a combined MD/PhD degree. Over 100 medical schools offer such programs. Some programs provide financial assistance (tuition assistance or stipends) for MD/PhD students through the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. National pre-doctoral fellowships are also available through the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. For information on MD/PhD programs and other special programs, please see your health professions adviser.