Pharmacology (Doctorate)

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Your future in pharmacology starts in the lab.

Gain a comprehensive understanding of the mechanisms of drugs and their effects on physiological systems through Creighton University’s Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacology. This research-intensive doctorate program will prepare you for a career in research, as a leader in academia or as part of the pharmaceutical or biotech industries. Our graduates have gone on to work as professors, industry scientists, postdoctoral researchers, and medical science liaisons.

Students and faculty within Creighton’s pharmacology program continue to research various diseases such as asthma, cancer, cardiovascular disease and pulmonary hypertension, neurological diseases such as epilepsy, autism, and schizophrenia, substance abuse, stroke and birth defects.

Research what matters to you.

Creighton’s pharmacology doctoral program can be customized to fit your interests and career goals. You will work with a major advisor and dissertation committee to create a customized plan of study. This gives you a clear roadmap of what coursework and research must be completed to earn your PhD. Students can concentrate their studies across several areas of specialization including:

  • Autonomic pharmacology
  • Cardiovascular pharmacology
  • Ocular pharmacology
  • Renal pharmacology
  • Exocrine pharmacology
  • Immunopharmacology
  • Neuropharmacology
  • Toxicology

Big opportunities – small class sizes.

Take advantage of the resources of a large university without getting lost in the crowd. Small class sizes in Creighton University’s pharmacology doctoral program allow for each student to have regular access to our expert faculty members and specialized lab equipment. You’ll also be able to network and collaborate with other students in your cohort.


To earn the Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacology degree at Creighton University, you must complete 90 credits:

  • 36 credits in Program Core Courses
    • Medical Pharmacology I
    • Medical Pharmacology II
    • Receptor and Molecular Pharmacology
    • Research Methods in Pharmacology (First Year Lab Rotations)
    • Special Topics in Pharmacology (Biostatistics)
    • Responsible Conduct of Research
    • Research Methods
    • Fundamentals of Cell and Molecular Biology
    • The Discipline of Scientific Writing and Preparation of Competitive Grant Applications
  • 14-18 credits in Seminars
    • Research Rounds in Pharmacology
    • Pharmacology Seminar
  • Independent Research (select credits needed to reach total degree credits of 90)
    • Directed Independent Study (PHR 595)
    • Directed Independent Research
    • Directed Independent Study (PHR 795)
    • Doctoral Dissertation (must be presented and defended)
  • Comprehensive Examination

Students must maintain a B (3.0) average throughout the graduate program with no more than six credits with a grade of C.

Goals of the program along with a full course listing can be found in Creighton’s course catalog.


Creighton University has maintained continuous accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission since 1928.  For information regarding the University’s accreditation status, visit

Information regarding academic programs which hold specialized accreditation can be found on this page.

Admissions Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university
    • Must include satisfactory completion of coursework in biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry and mathematics or equivalent courses. Missing coursework may be made up in the graduate program upon approval.
    • Minimum GPA of 3.0 required
  • Completed application (requires non-refundable $50 fee). Must include the following documents:
    • Official transcripts from all educational institutions attended
    • Personal statement
    • Three letters of recommendation
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Scores in the 50th percentile or above for the verbal and quantitative parts of the examination are preferred. A minimum score of 3.5 is required for the analytical writing component.
  • International applicants must meet English language proficiency requirements
  • International applicants who are formally admitted must complete and submit a Certification of Available Finances Form through the Global Engagement Office

Tuition & Scholarships

Tuition is waived for students accepted into Creighton’s pharmacology doctorate program. Students also receive a stipend and health insurance coverage.

Important Dates & Deadlines

Program Start Date

Application Deadline
March 31

Master's Degree

Master of Science in Pharmacology (30 credits)

  • A research-based master’s degree in pharmacology is available for students who do not require a PhD for their education or career goals. The master’s program shares courses with the doctorate program, but has fewer requirements. Research projects are designed to reach successful completion within two years of starting the program.
  • Available on-campus only.


A full listing of courses offered for the Master of Science in Pharmacology can be found in the course catalog

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