Doctoral Degree Program – PhD

The CAMPEP-accredited Doctor of Philosophy in Medical Physics at VCU offers students course work and research training as it is applied to the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases. Research interests include topics such as functional imaging using PET and NMR, CT image artifact removal and deformation, radiation therapy dose calculations, 4D radiation therapy, and brachytherapy. To apply to the VCU Medical Physics Graduate program, you must complete and submit an electronic application through the university's graduate admissions page . More informaiton can be found on our FAQ page. A typical time table for this program is shown below: 


PhD Suggested Timeline and Course Sequence 



1st Fall Semester MEDP 563 Radiological Physics and Radiation Dosimetry
MEDP 601 Health Physics
MEDP 635 Physics of Diagnostic Imaging
MEDP 697 Directed Research
1st Spring Semester MEDP 567 Introduction to Radiation Therapy Physics
MEDP 630 Radiobiology for the Medical Physicist
MEDP 636 Physics of MRI
MEDP 697 Directed Research 
1st Summer Semester MEDP 697 Directed Research
OVPR 602 Responsible Scientific Conduct *
2nd Fall Semester MEDP 633 Advanced Radiation Therapy Physics
MEDP 697 Directed Research
2nd Spring Semester MEDP 637 Physics of Nuclear Medicine
MEDP 689 Medical Physics Literature Review **
MEDP 697 Directed Research
2nd Spring Semester Written Comprehensive Examination
  • Must have a GPA of 3.0 or better to take
  • Must pass to progress in the program; with one chance to retake portions of the exam
After the Written Comprehensive Exam Work with advisor to select an advisory committee
  • Complete Advisory Committee Form in GradTrak
2nd Summer Semester MEDP 697 Directed Research ***
OVPR 602 Responsible Scientific Conduct *
2nd Summer/3rd Fall Semesters Oral Comprehensive Examination
  • Submit written research proposal for advisor approval
  • Once approved by advisor, submit written research proposal to Advisory Committee
  • Schedule exam in GradTrak, submit form to Office of Graduate Education two weeks prior to the examination
  • Must have a GPA of 3.0 or better to take
  • Must pass to progress in the program, with one chance to retry with approval of the School of Medicine
First 2 weeks of Final Semester Submit application for graduation
1 month prior to defense Complete draft of dissertation and submit to advisory committee for approval to proceed with defense
2 weeks prior to defense Schedule dissertation defense using GradTrak and submit form after obtaining signatures from advisor and Program Director
At least 2 weeks prior to end of semester Dissertation Defense
  • May pass the examination with no more than one negative vote
  • Make changes to the dissertation as requested by advisory committee
  • Collect the signatures of the committee, graduate program director, and school dean on dissertation form>
End of final semester  Graduation!

*  A Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) course is required training for all students engaged in research activities
**  Students must officially register once for MEDP 689 (Journal Club) at any point during their studies; however, all students in the program are required to attend journal club every semester
***  From this point forward, each semester the student registers for Directed Research plus electives as approved by the student's graduate advisory committee.

We have detailed descriptions of our course listings on our resources page. Admission and degree requirements for the PhD program can be found in the VCU Graduate Bulletin. A summary of these can be found in the FAQs. For a more detailed description of the program, department policies, and other relevant information, please refer to the VCU Medical Physics Graduate Program Student Handbook and the FAQs on this website.