Systems Genomics PhD

The Institute for Systems Genomics offers a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Systems Genomics.*   A PhD in Systems Genomics positions graduates to take leadership roles in basic research, clinical research, program management and consultation at the PhD level in the areas of Genome Sciences and Personalized Genomic Medicine.

Systems Genomics candidates will receive specialized training in one or more of the following areas: 

  • Integrated Life Sciences: mechanisms of inheritance; genetics and genomics of human disease; stem cell biology; molecular biology including genomic technology; neurobiology and behavioral genetics and genomics.
  • Integrated Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science: computational methods in systems biology; bioinformatics analysis of high-throughput data; such as NGS or mass spectrometry data; facility with data bases relevant to systems genomics and network biology.
  • Integrated Personalized Health Care and ELSI: interdisciplinary competency in human genomic diagnostics, laboratory diagnostics, health care ethics, and regulatory issues in the clinical laboratory.

Requirements for the PhD in Systems Genomics:

The Systems Genomics PhD is a multi-faceted and evolving curriculum tailored with an advisory committee for each candidate. Programmatic collaborations already exist within and across UConn departments and the Jackson Laboratory campuses. Except in special cases, PhD candidates will complete required coursework or practicum workshop training within the first 2 years of enrollment in the program.

The first year of coursework focus is “Foundations of Systems Genomics”:

  • Genome organization and instability
  • Computational methods handling large genomic data sets
  • Regulation of gene and protein expression
  • Functional genomic screens in model organisms

The second year will focus is “Advanced Topics in Systems Genomics”:

  • Computational Foundations of Systems Biology
  • Fundamental methods in organizing and managing genomic and clinical data
  • Genome-wide association, quantitative trait loci, complex traits
  • Metabolic diseases as a model for single genes in networks
  • Population structure and evolution

The final component of the degree is completion of approved dissertation research and a thesis. Prospective candidates must identify research advisors with whom they have interviewed prior to application and must secure a research placement with a major advisor within the first year of the program.


The PhD in Systems Genomics is not financially supported and as such cannot offer tuition reimbursement or graduate research assistantships for the first two-years of the program. We are not accepting applications for regular admission. Applicants may consider self-funding mechanisms or establishing a collaboration with an industry partner or your employer. Collaborative partnerships will require engagement of the Director of the Institute for Systems Genomics and University officials for academic agreements.