Graduate program information for the Institute for Biomedical Sciences is described in detail in this chapter. See subsections for specific program information as well as policies and procedures. The Institute for Biomedical Sciences does not currently offer an undergraduate degree program. Interested students should visit the Institute for Biomedical Sciences website at biomedical.gsu.edu for updates on our degree offerings.
About the Institute for Biomedical Sciences
The Institute for Biomedical Sciences (IBMS) was established in January 2014 as part of Georgia State University’s strategic plan that recommended enhanced contributions to the sciences, health, and medical education. The Institute is dedicated to advancing fundamental and innovative biomedical research that improves human health, as well as educating and training future generations of leading biomedical scientists that are poised to enter the workforce and support cutting-edge discoveries. The launch of the Institute represents the most recent progress toward establishing Georgia State as a premier urban research university.
IBMS is a leading multidisciplinary research and education (degree-granting) institute dedicated to advancing fundamental and innovative biomedical research that improves human health as well as educating and training future generations of leading biomedical scientists and health (non-M.D.) professionals related to biomedical sciences.
Despite tremendous advances in biological and medical research, significant gaps still exist between basic laboratory research and its clinical applications. Now more than ever there is an urgent need for bridging basic research to clinical management strategies. To meet this significant challenge and promote translational research from bench to bedside, the interface among the biomedical science disciplines has emerged as one of the most exciting interdisciplinary research fields in science. To significantly and rapidly accelerate Georgia State University as a recognized leader in this area, IBMS has been established to expand its contribution and efforts to research and education in these areas.
The Institute’s key assets include the university’s existing strengths in inflammation, immunity and infection, microbial pathogenesis, molecular and translational medicine, translational immunology, oncology, and therapeutics and diagnostics, which align with its strategic priorities, Georgia’s commitment to be the nation’s hub for biomedical research and federal/non-federal funding priorities. IBMS provides a world-class interdisciplinary training environment for preparation of technically skilled students who are capable of filling the diverse workforce needs in the biomedical sciences.
IBMS is building a strong research presence in biomedical sciences, but is also fostering a unique environment to promote synergistic and interdisciplinary collaboration with units internal to the university. The Institute partners with other Georgia and non-Georgia research institutions, major medical centers, private sector (for example, biopharmaceutical, biotech) companies and organizations/foundations, including the Georgia Research Alliance, to promote world-class multidisciplinary research and education programs.
Office of the Director
716 Petit Science Center Building
Jian-Dong Li, Director
Timothy L. Denning, Director of Graduate Studies
Core Faculty: Christopher Basler, Patricia Denning, Timothy Denning, Andrew Gewirtz, Sang-Moo Kang, Chunying Li, Jian-Dong Li, Didier Merlin, Richard Plemper, JoAnn Tufariello, Baozhong Wang, Zhonglin Xie, and Ming-Hui Zou
Research Faculty: Benoit Chassaing, Imoh Okon, Ping Song, Jeong-Jong Yoon, Benyue Zhang, Huaiping Zhu, Priya Luthra, and Tshidi Tsibane
9000.10 Mission, Background, Philosophy, and Goals
Mission: The Institute for Biomedical Sciences (IBMS) will be a leading multidisciplinary research and education (degree-granting) institute dedicated to advancing fundamental and innovative biomedical research that improves human health as well as educating and training future generations of leading biomedical scientists and health (non-M.D.) professionals.
Background: Despite tremendous advances in biological and medical research, significant gaps still exist between basic laboratory research and its clinical applications. Now more than ever there is an urgent need for bridging basic research to clinical management strategies. To meet this significant challenge and promote translational research from bench to bedside, the interface between the biomedical science disciplines has emerged as one of the most exciting interdisciplinary research fields in science. To significantly and rapidly accelerate Georgia State University as a recognized leader in this area, the Institute was established to expand contributions and efforts to research and education in these areas. The Institute’s key assets include the University’s existing strengths in inflammation, immunity and infection, microbial pathogenesis, molecular and translational medicine, translational immunology, oncology, and therapeutics and diagnostics, which align with the its strategic priorities, Georgia’s commitment to be the nation’s hub for biomedical research and federal/non-federal funding priorities. Moreover, IBMS provides a world-class interdisciplinary training environment for preparation of technically skilled students that are capable of filling the diverse workforce needs in the biomedical sciences.
Philosophy (Success Through Synergy): IBMS is not only building a strong research presence in biomedical sciences, but also fosters a unique environment to promote synergistic and interdisciplinary collaboration with units internal to the University, other Georgia and non-Georgia research institutions, major medical centers, private sector (e.g., biopharmaceutical, biotech) companies, and organizations/ foundations to develop world-class multidisciplinary research and education programs.
- Pursue excellence in fundamental and innovative research in the basic biomedical sciences.
- Advance diagnostic, therapeutic, and preventive measures for major diseases, with an initial emphasis on inflammatory, immunological, infectious, metabolic and cardiovascular, and neoplastic diseases.
- Accelerate translation and commercialization outcomes by collaborating and interacting with partner institutions, hospitals and biopharmaceuticals.
- Provide an environment for preparing students to meet the future challenges and workforce needs in biomedical research and health professions.
9000.20 Degrees Offered
IBMS currently offers the following graduate program:
Master of Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in Biomedical Enterprise.
Please visit the IBMS website at biomedical.gsu.edu for updates on our degree offerings.
9000.30 Research Centers and Initiatives
Areas of Research Focus: IBMS promotes interdisciplinary research that drives advances in biomedical sciences through synergistic collaboration, ultimately leading to better patient care. The focus is on understanding the mechanistic basis for a variety of important human diseases, such as inflammatory, immunologic, infectious, metabolic and cardiovascular diseases, and developing innovative approaches to prevention, diagnosis and treatment. Initial areas of research focus for IBMS are:
- Immunology (molecular and cellular immunology, inflammation, immunity, chemical immunology, tumor immunology, systems and computational immunology)
- Translational Immunology
- Microbiology (molecular and cellular microbiology, host-pathogen interactions, microbiota, translational microbiology, systems and computational microbiology)
- Microbial Pathogenesis
- Infectious Diseases
- Metabolic and Cardiovascular Diseases
- Molecular, Cellular and Translational Medicine
- Translational Systems Biology and Bioinformatics
- Translational Diagnostics and Therapeutics
Center for Inflammation, Immunity & Infection
The mission of the Center for Inflammation, Immunity & Infection is to better understand the molecular basis of inflammatory diseases and further develop novel therapeutic strategies. Inflammation is one of the body’s major defense mechanisms in response to infection or injury, but when it is uncontrolled, it causes inflammatory diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, otitis media and cancer.
Center for Microbial Pathogenesis
The Center for Microbial Pathogenesis is focused on studying such viruses as influenza virus, hepatitis C, dengue, Ebola, Marburg, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, cytomegalovirus, and several other negative-stranded RNA viruses. Studies are directed at understanding how the innate immune system of the infected host is counteracted by components of these viruses and how the interferon signaling system works on a molecular level. Researchers use this knowledge to develop new vaccines against these viruses and work to identify small molecular weight compounds for use as antivirals.
Center for Translational Immunology
This center is expected to launch in the near future. Please visit the IBMS website at biomedical.gsu.edu for updates.
9000.40 Academic Resources and Services
Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services
Petit Science Center, Room 437
Yvette Hilaire, Graduate Advisor
The Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services (OAA) provides current and prospective IBMS students with comprehensive student support services to ensure academic and career success.
Advising and Academic Assistance
For students in the Master of Interdisciplinary Studies (MIS) program with a concentration in Biomedical Enterprise, academic advisement is provided using a two-pronged approach. The Graduate Advisor in the OAA provides guidance on administrative matters such as program of study advisement, degree petition process, thesis/capstone registration, graduation, and referral to other student support services on campus. The IBMS faculty serve as faculty mentors, and students are encouraged to talk to their mentors about how to select a concentration, determining which course electives make sense for future career goals, exploring research interests and opportunities, developing professional networks, and serving on thesis or capstone committees. MIS students are not assigned a faculty advisor but are instead encouraged to develop multiple mentoring relationships with IBMS faculty as well as faculty in the College of Law and Robinson College of Business.
The Institute provides specific career support and leadership development services to all current IBMS students and alumni. Students are invited to meet with our IBMS Career Coordinator to discuss individual career questions. Career Services can help students with resume writing, interviewing, job searching, internship development, and networking.
The Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services (OAA) also supports all IBMS student clubs and organizations – students are encouraged to inquire about joining student clubs and organizations while being enrolled in IBMS.
9000.50 Student Organizations
Biomedical Student Association (BMSA)
The Biomedical Student Association (BMSA) is the student organization of the IBMS at Georgia State University. BMSA seeks to develop well-rounded biomedical professionals and promote meaningful interactions between students, faculty and staff, and health professionals. Throughout the school year, BMSA will organize social events, professional development opportunities, and public service events for students, faculty, and staff.
The IBMS accepts students into the Master of Interdisciplinary Studies (MIS) in Biomedical Enterprise program in the fall semester.
9010.10 Master of Interdisciplinary Studies (MIS) in Biomedical Enterprise Application Requirements
For complete application materials instructions, visit the following IBMS website: http://biomedical.gsu.edu/academics/
The following materials are required for admission to the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise. All application materials are submitted through the Institute’s website http://biomedical.gsu.edu/admissions/.
- $50.00 application fee.
- A resume or curriculum vitae
- One official transcript from each college and/or university attended (including Georgia State University). Transcripts are required regardless of length of stay or if the grades are listed on another school’s transcript. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent at the time of enrollment from a regionally accredited institution.
- Three letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with the applicant’s intellectual achievement and potential. At least two of these letters must be from faculty or senior administrators at academic institutions.
- A statement outlining the applicant’s academic and professional goals related to seeking this degree.
- Official scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Please note that GRE scores over five years old cannot be accepted. (Applicants with an earned doctorate or J.D. from a regionally accredited institution may not be required to take the GRE). Those applicants should check with the Institute well before the admission deadline to see if this examination requirement may be waived. The School reserves the right to require the GRE, GMAT, or MCAT examination for applicants with an earned doctorate or J.D.)
- Official scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or via the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), for applicants whose native language is not English. Applicants living in the Atlanta area may take the Georgia State Test of English Proficiency (GTEP) in place of the TOEFL or IELTS. Please note that the TOEFL, IELTS, and GSTEP scores over two years old cannot be accepted. The TOEFL, IELTS, and GSTEP examination may not be required for international applicants who have a received a degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution.
- TOEFL: http://www.toefl.org/
- IELTS: http://www.ielts.org/
- GSTEP: http://alsl.gsu.eu/programs/gstep/
- A Certificate of Immunization (after acceptance)
9010.20 International Student Admission
It is the policy of Georgia State University to encourage the enrollment of students from other countries. The University subscribes to the principles of international education and to the basic concept that only through education and understanding can mutual respect, appreciation and tolerance of others be accomplished. The recognition of the values of cultural exchange is inherent in our philosophy of education and is predicated on an awareness of the need to foster better cooperation, friendship, and understanding among the peoples of the world. In this regard, we welcome international students to our campus because we believe in a cultural exchange program which will be beneficial to our own student body, to the international students involved, and to metropolitan Atlanta.
English Proficiency: Applicants whose native language is not English must submit scores, not more than two years old, on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Official scores must be reported from the Educational Testing Service to IBMS prior to the application deadline. The TOEFL is not required of international applicants who have received a degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution. TOEFL information can be found at http://www.toefl.org/. IELTS information can be found at http://www.ielts.org/. Applicants living in the Atlanta area may take the Georgia State Test of English Proficiency (GSTEP) in the place of the TOEFL. For more information about GSTEP: http://www2.gsu.edu/~wwwtep/index.html.
Financial Resources: Applicants who have been accepted and plan to attend Georgia State University on an F-1 or J-1 visa must submit a Financial Statement showing the financial support necessary for the cost associated with the first year of study. This verification does not need to be submitted with your application but will be required before you can enroll if you are accepted.
Course Load: An international student with a student visa is required to carry a full course of study in the fall and spring semesters. A full course of study for graduate students at Georgia State University is 9 semester hours in the fall and spring semesters and 6 semester hours in the summer semester. International students cannot be admitted as non-degree students.
For additional information pertaining to international applicants and students at Georgia State University, please refer to the Office of International Student and Scholar Services on the Georgia State University website at isss.gsu.edu.
9010.30 Re-entry Students
A re-entry student is a student who has been enrolled at Georgia State University and who:
- Has not maintained an enrollment totaling 6 hours (or more) of degree applicable courses over three consecutive semesters (including summer) until degree completion; or
- Attended any semester as a transient student and wishes to attend an additional semester as a transient student.
Re-entry is approved by application and is not guaranteed. The application deadlines are as follows:
Graduate students previously enrolled in the MIS Biomedical Enterprise program, may only re-enter the same graduate program or status in which they were last enrolled and they may be required to satisfy the degree requirements of the graduate catalog in effect at the time of re-entry. The Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services will notify the student of their requirements and update their program of study. Students will be required to change to the graduate catalog in effect at the time of reentry when they re-enter the university after a period of two or more consecutive years in which they have earned no academic credit at Georgia State University. Students must be approved for re-entry through the School. Re-entry is not guaranteed, even for students previously enrolled in MIS Biomedical Enterprise program.
To apply as a re-entry student, the following items should be submitted to the Office of Academic Assistance:
- Graduate Re-entry Application (available here: http://biomedical.gsu.edu/admissions)
- $25.00 Application Fee. A check or money order (in U.S. currency) should be made payable to Georgia State University. This fee is nonrefundable.
- Resident Status Form – This form is required to determine if you are an in-state or out-of-state student for tuition purposes. Please attach it to your application
- A Certificate of Immunization (after acceptance)
- Lawful Presence Verification (after acceptance)
- Completed application materials must be mailed to the address below by the deadline date:
Institute for Biomedical Studies
Georgia State University
Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services
P.O. Box 5035 Atlanta, GA 30303-5035
Graduate degree and certificate students in the Institute for Biomedical Sciences are responsible for knowledge of all regulations and procedures of the program and the university. Enrollment in a program constitutes a student’s acknowledgment that they are obligated to comply with all academic and administrative regulations and degree requirements. Students are encouraged to read carefully regulations related to the MIS Biomedical Enterprise program.
Summary of Georgia State University Policy on Responsible Conduct Research Training: Georgia State University is committed to promoting research ethics within the University community and modeling integrity across all disciplines and areas of empirical research. As research has become more complex, collaborative, and costly, issues of research ethics similarly have become complex, extensive and important. The federally mandated training of all levels of research students at Georgia State University in the Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) must prepare them to face these issues in their professional lives. The Scholarship and Research Integrity (SARI) program at Georgia State University, developed in response to the America Competes Act requirements, is designed to offer students enrolled in undergraduate research, research graduate degree programs, and post-doctoral research programs comprehensive training in the RCR in a manner that is tailored to address the issues faced by students in their respective programs. As part of the commitment and policy, graduate research students and post-doctoral research fellows will be required to complete an online RCR training program provided by the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI).
The Georgia State University IBMS has devised a RCR education program plan to be in compliance with Georgia State University’s RCR policy and to ensure IBMS students graduating from our MIS program complete the required CITI RCR training program.
9020.10 Time Limit for Completion of Degree/Graduate Certificates
Before deciding to enroll in a graduate program of this school, students must examine seriously and realistically their abilities to adjust their personal and professional schedules to accommodate the challenge of graduate study. The maximum time limits set by the faculty for completing the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise program is two years from the first semester of admission. Students or applicants with questions about the commitment needed to complete the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise program should schedule an appointment with the Institute’s Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services.
9020.20 Catalog Editions
Normally, students will be permitted to graduate under the provisions of the graduate catalog in effect at the time of first enrollment. Students may choose to graduate under the provisions of a subsequent graduate catalog; that is, they may choose to change their “catalog edition.” Students who choose to do this must meet all provisions of the subsequent graduate catalog.
Students are required to change to the current catalog edition when they change programs/statuses or after certain absences from the program, as explained below in section 9020.30.
9020.30 Continuous Enrollment Requirement and Requests to Re-enter
Students in all graduate degree and graduate certificate programs must maintain an enrollment totaling six (6) hours or more of degree applicable courses over any consecutive three (3) semester period (including summers) until degree completion. In other words, the total enrollment of the current term plus the two terms preceding it must add to six (6) hours or more at all times. The status of all students will be checked by the midpoint of each term for compliance with the Continuous Enrollment Requirement. Any student whose enrollment is out of compliance will receive a continuous enrollment registration hold preventing all current and future registration. Those students will be notified by an email message sent to their official Georgia State University email account. To resume their programs of study, students with continuous enrollment registration holds must apply for reentry admission by the published deadline (see section 9010.30), must be granted re-entry admission, and must enroll at a credit hour level sufficient to satisfy the continuous enrollment requirement. For more information on the re-entry process, see section 9010.30 or contact the Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services (OAA).
Students who do not attend the semester for which re-entry was originally required must complete a new re-entry form for subsequent semesters.
All students who wish to re-enter one of the graduate level programs or non-degree status after an absence of one year must meet the degree requirements and academic regulations of the graduate catalog current upon return, along with other reentry provisions that may be in effect.
All students who are approved for re-entry will be eligible to retain all Georgia State course credit (and already approved transfer credit, if any) earned previously if their program can be completed within the time limit that was applicable to their program before the absence. The cumulative graduate GPA calculations will include all attempts in all courses at Georgia State University. Time limits would apply.
Students who plan not to register for a particular semester but who intend to continue the program at some later semester should discuss such plans with the Graduate Advisor in order to facilitate reentry at a subsequent time. Failure to comply with this request may complicate reentry in the semester preferred. An absence from the program, whether planned or unplanned, does not exempt students from the requirement to complete the program within the appropriate time limit.
9020.35 Enrollment in Approved Courses
Students must enroll for courses that are part of the approved curriculum for the program to which they have been accepted. Students who do otherwise are subject to loss of credit and/or loss of eligibility to continue to register. Failure to register for degree applicable courses over the course of three consecutive semesters will result in unsatisfactory progress and the rules of Continuous Enrollment Requirement will apply.
9020.40 Course Load
The course load of a master’s student may vary with the circumstances of the individual student each semester. A graduate student may enroll in 1 to 15 credit hours. A full-time course of study for graduate students at Georgia State University is nine (9) credit hours in fall and spring semesters, and six (6) credit hours in summer semesters.
In determining each semester’s course load, a student must balance other time constraints (work, family, civic, and other responsibilities) with the need to make reasonable and timely progress toward completion of the program.
9020.50 Grade Point Average and Course Grade Requirements
For Master’s level students, an overall institutional grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or better must be earned to receive the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise degree. All core courses in the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise degree must be completed with a grade of B or better, and any student earning a grade of B- or below must repeat the core course. No more than six semester hours of grades less than B will be accepted for the degree in all other MIS in Biomedical Enterprise program of study courses. No grade below a C will be accepted toward the degree. The records of students who fall below the 3.00 GPA requirement for all course attempts will be reviewed for continuation in the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise program, and students may receive a scholastic warning or be scholastically dismissed from the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise program.
9020.60 Final Course Grades
The following course grades will be given as final grade options in courses taught by IBMS faculty members. Any deviations—including the availability of plus/minus grading—will be at the discretion of the individual faculty member and specifically stated in his or her syllabus.
|Final Course Letter Grade
||97 – 100
||93 – 96
||90 – 92
||87 – 89
||83 – 86
||80 – 82
||77 – 79
||73 – 76
||70 – 72
||60 – 69
||59 & below
9020.70 Application for Graduation
All candidates for the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise must file a formal application for graduation with the University’s Graduation Office at least two semesters in advance of the expected semester of graduation. Deadlines are published on the Georgia State University website: http://registrar.gsu.edu/graduation/. The Graduation Office will inform the Institute when the student files the application. The Institute for Biomedical Sciences will then conduct an audit and inform the student of any remaining requirements—these items will include any graduation clearance requirements. A degree will be awarded only to a student who meets the university academic, residence, and graduation clearance requirements as well as the standards of performance and academic requirements for the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise degree.
Scholastic Warning and Suspension for MIS in Biomedical Enterprise Students
Each student admitted into the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise program in the Institute for Biomedical Sciences must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00. A student whose cumulative institutional grade point average falls below 3.00 at the end of a semester will be placed on Scholastic Warning. The student will be notified of this standing by the Institute for Biomedical Sciences. If a 3.00 cumulative grade point average is not achieved by the end of the next twelve semester hours or two semesters, whichever is longer, of completed course work approved by the IBMS faculty, the student will be suspended from the graduate program. Transient students must maintain a 3.00 cumulative grade point average in order to continue in that status. Transient students who do not maintain a 3.00 cumulative grade point average may be subject to scholastic exclusion.
A student may apply for reinstatement after one semester as a suspended student. Application for reinstatement must be made no later than six weeks prior to the first day of classes for the semester in which reinstatement is sought.
The appeals procedure for graduate students in the MIS Biomedical Enterprise Program will follow different paths, depending on the nature of the student’s appeal. The various types of situations and the appropriate appeals avenues are as follows:
9030.10 Admissions Appeals
At the graduate level, a person who wishes to appeal an admission decision first discusses the matter with the Director of the Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services (OAA) within 5 working days of the date of the denial. If the question is not settled there, a written appeal must be submitted to the OAA Director within 10 working days of the date of the denial or the date of the denial discussion with the OAA Director. (Workdays are counted as Monday through Friday except university staff holidays.) The director will present the appeal to the appropriate Admissions Committee, which will examine the facts presented. The OAA Director, on behalf of the committee, will make a recommendation to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. The associate dean will render a written decision to the applicant normally within 10 workdays of the date the applicant’s letter was received by the OAA Director. See Section 1100 of the Graduate Catalog for University level appeals of admission decisions.
9030.20 Petitions for Policy Waivers and Variances, and Appeals, and Student Complaints, Concerns, or Grievances
The petitions for policy waivers and variances, and appeals procedure for students will follow different courses depending on the nature of the student’s appeal. Please refer to University Information Section 1050.80 under Polices and Disclosures in this catalog or visit http://enrollment.gsu.edu/assistance/ or the Student Code of Conduct online: http://codeofconduct.gsu.edu/ for details.
Student Complaints, Concerns, or Grievances
Similarly, the student complaints, concerns, or grievance procedure for students will follow different courses depending on the nature of the student’s appeal. Please refer to University Information Section 1050.80 under Polices and Disclosures in this catalog or visit http://enrollment.gsu.edu/assistance/.
9030.30 Appeal of Exclusions, Dismissals and Terminations
Terminated, dismissed or excluded graduate students with questions about their status should first discuss their situation with the Graduate Advisor in the Office of Academic Assistance and Career Services (OAA). Following this discussion, students who believe they have extenuating circumstances may submit a written appeal of their termination or exclusion to the Director of OAA. The director will review the information submitted in support of the appeal and the student’s total record. The director will then make a recommendation to the associate dean for academic affairs, who will make the decision regarding acceptance or denial of the appeal. The student will receive a written response from the school normally within 10 workdays of the date the appeal is received. (Workdays are counted as Monday through Friday except university staff holidays.)
Requests for such consideration must be submitted, in writing, to the director of OAA within 10 workdays (defined as Monday through Friday except university holidays). Students should write their appeals completely, but concisely, and include all facts germane to their case. Documentation should be provided, where possible, to substantiate statements made. Specific dates of the beginning and ending of particular problems should be included. Only circumstances described in the written and signed appeal as initially submitted will be accepted from the student; oral appeals are not permitted, nor are requests to submit additional information after the appeal has been reviewed. Appeals must be dated, signed, and include the student’s home address and telephone numbers (work and home).
Having been enrolled in too many courses relative to job requirements or other responsibilities or having continued to enroll while experiencing personal, work, or health-related problems very rarely constitutes such extenuating circumstances.
Master of Interdisciplinary Studies (MIS) in Biomedical Enterprise
Timothy L. Denning, Director of Graduate Studies
Yvette Hilaire, Graduate Program Coordinator
Description of the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise Program
Goals and Objectives of the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise Program
Given today’s complex challenges and the need for creative solutions, graduates with an MIS degree need to be able to adopt and use information derived from various traditional disciplines, to think logically and critically about information and new ideas, to be flexible and creative, and to work effectively with individuals from diverse backgrounds. Through interdisciplinary course work, including basic research and team-based projects, as well as experiential learning in a capstone project, graduates from our proposed program will develop the knowledge areas, skills, and strategic approaches that are necessary to make links between critical fields. Graduates will be able to enter or to return to the workforce with increased capacity to multi-task within the workplace and to interface effectively with various stakeholders.
Thus, the goals listed below are the main focus of the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise Program.
- Enable recognition of how successful work across disciplines advances knowledge and solves problems, and develop ability to conduct interdisciplinary work
- Enhance critical thinking skills with regard to cross-cutting problems, proposed interdisciplinary solutions, and their applications
- Increase knowledge of techniques used to enhance creativity
- Develop strengths in communication, from verbal, written, and presentation skills, through ethical conduct and professional dispositions in all settings
- Encourage sensitivity, understanding, teamwork, and leadership among collaborators from diverse backgrounds
- Promote high-level student and faculty engagement in emerging interdisciplinary topics
- Create job-ready graduates with professional dispositions appropriate for smooth interface between relevant fields
The faculty and staff of the Institute for Biomedical Sciences, Robinson College of Business and the College of Law are committed to providing a supportive academic environment that promotes the growth and progress of students engaged in graduate studies.
The Master of Interdisciplinary Studies (MIS) in Biomedical Enterprise program includes a minimum of thirty-six (36) semester credit hours of study at the master’s level beyond the bachelor’s degree.
The programs will combine face-to-face, hybrid, and online instruction to create newly trained graduates with knowledge points and skills sets to address today’s complex challenges at the interface of traditional disciplines. The MIS in Biomedical Enterprise curriculum will begin with a shared proseminar that helps to unify the disciplines of the program, and will conclude with a similar capstone project that provides professional readiness or transition into a subsequent program via an internship or course-based experience. To meet the interdisciplinary goals of the MIS, the Biomedical Enterprise concentration will be offered jointly by the Institute for Biomedical Sciences (IBMS), Robinson College of Business and the College of Law using a cohort model. Each participating entity will be recognized at the university for its instructional and administrative efforts.
Faculty directly involved with the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise include:
Institute for Biomedical Sciences: Christopher Basler, Patricia Denning, Timothy Denning, Andrew Gewirtz, Sang-Moo Kang, Chunying Li, Jian-Dong Li, Didier Merlin, Richard Plemper, JoAnn Tufariello, Baozhong Wang, Zhonglin Xie, and Ming-Hui Zou
Robinson College of Business: Michael Jordan, Richard Welke
College of Law: Roberta Marie Berry, Yaniv Heled, Patricia Zettler
College of Arts & Sciences: John Houghton, Georg Pierce, Eric Gilbert
MIS in Biomedical Enterprise Degree Requirements
Required Core Courses (30 hours)
Electives (6 hours)
|Required Core Courses
||Biosafety: Principles & Practice (4)
||Intro to Graduate Studies in Biology (2)
||Patent Law (3)
||Biotechnology Practicum (2)
||Survey of Business Principles (3)
||Organizational Entrepreneurship (3)
||Enhancing Customer Value (3)
||Innovating Customer Value (3)
||Internship, with seminar (2)
||2 Law Electives (3 hours each)
||Optional Science or Business Elective (3)
The aim of the introductory proseminar course will be to teach interdisciplinarity as a discipline itself, with introductions to the educational philosophy behind an interdisciplinary program, discussion of historical challenges resolved through interdisciplinary approaches, and debate on “live” case studies of current issues likely to require interdisciplinary solutions. Critical thinking and creativity leading to successful problem solving are also topics for the proseminar. They are talents and skills that can be nurtured and taught in this course, e.g. by adopting new ways of framing questions, learning to challenge assumptions, combining seemingly disparate ideas, and exploring factors that stimulate or inhibit creativity. Given that communication is key to progress in any discipline, this course will also teach strategies for professional communication and productive teamwork, such as methods for gaining familiarity with team members, setting ground rules and responsibilities, avoiding common problems, and building trust. The proseminar will be delivered with a face-to-face, interactive approach, enabling instructors, guest speakers, and students to discuss and debate current issues.
Given the direct links between the MIS curriculum in Biomedical Enterprise and placement in jobs in the bioscience business sector, this MIS program of study requires a summer internship in a professional environment. Numerous entities are prepared to collaborate with Georgia State to administer and host bioscience internships for our students. Thus, MIS students will have internship opportunities that range from start-up companies, established small businesses, and large enterprises with branch facilities in the region, to governmental research or regulatory agencies, to law firms with emphases such as patent, intellectual property, and/or health law.
In terms of internship administration, students will be assigned, supervised, and evaluated with attention to individual interests, abilities, and needs, along with expectations for high standards of conduct and productivity and intentional practices of careful matching and effective oversight. Specifically, internship sites will be identified and vetted through Legal Affairs and Risk Management at Georgia State. Mutual agreements will lead to formal posting of the internships on an on-line platform hosted by the GSU Office of Career Services, to be accessible exclusively to students in this MIS concentration. When possible, representatives from host sites will then visit the proseminar course (fall semester) to introduce their mission, approach, and internship opportunities, as well as to meet potential student interns. Subsequently (e.g. early spring semester), students will apply to specific internships using the Career Services platform. Host organizations will be able to review applications, consult with program faculty at GSU, interview candidates, and decide on intern matches no later than two months before the start dates. Legal matters related to hiring, clearance, confidentiality, intellectual property, etc., can be addressed in the two months between the match and the start dates.
During the internship, students will be required to participate in an online internship seminar course that will help monitor their experiences and productivity. The seminar instructor will have weekly contact with all interns, thereby assuring the opportunity to raise and address concerns, share best practices for maximizing internship experiences, and gauging student progress in knowledge and skill acquisition. Specific evaluation forms will be provided to internship hosts, students, and the faculty instructor of the internship seminar course. With pre-post format, the evaluations will assess student growth in practical knowledge and professional skills. Triangulation of data from three perspectives (host, student, faculty instructor) will provide deep understanding of the internship experience, which can be used to assess program effectiveness, internship host site appropriateness, and individual student success. The entire internship process will be led by the concentration directors, internship seminar instructor, and the lead program administrator in the IBMS, in collaboration with staff members in Career Services, attorneys in Legal Affairs, and directors in the Office of Risk Management at Georgia State.
Notably, the format and timing of course delivery during and after the internship are flexible and likely to occur at the outer extent of business hours. As above, the internship seminar will be largely online and in the evening, so as to avoid conflict with full-time work in the internship position. In the final semester of the program, which is scheduled to occur after the internship, the courses remaining for these MIS students can be taken in the late afternoon or evening. The program is designed intentionally in this fashion to enable internship hosts to consider hiring immediately the motivated and productive student interns from this program.
The aim of the capstone project is to challenge students to demonstrate their abilities to solve current practical and/or academic problems by using knowledge and skills from multiple disciplines. The capstone project should result in a product that is timely and relevant for the interdisciplinary course of study and be presented to faculty members for assessment based on the value of the product or performance. The key skill sets of critical thinking, creativity, communication, and collaboration must be assessed through the final project, and the result must be reasonable and be intellectually defensible. Faculty in conjunction with advisors from professional settings will contribute to the design, guidelines, and grading rubrics. Since the project should draw on the whole learning experience in the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise program, successful completion of the capstone project will be designed to accurately predict success of program graduates as they enter the workforce or pursue further degrees subsequent to completion of the MIS degree. Ultimately, the MIS in Biomedical Enterprise program delivery will support successful completion of the program goals described below.
This curriculum will be offered jointly by the Institute for Biomedical Sciences (IBMS), Robinson College of Business and the College of Law using a cohort model. Biotechnology uses living systems to tackle intractable problems in many domains, such as production (e.g. clean and efficient synthesis of chemicals, plastics, and enzymes; growth of food and feed), health (e.g. antibody development, RNA interference therapies, regenerative medicine), and environment (e.g. biofuels, bioremediation, biosensors). Sound business principles and creative business solutions are critical to carrying out the complex process of bringing scientific advances to production and sales for human access. In all steps from idea to global impact, legal regulations must protect intellectual property, while ensuring the quality and efficiency of work using public and private investments to support and promote innovation. Frequent monitoring and feedback can and should assure public trust and protection, while maximizing investment and productivity. Therefore, the presently proposed MIS in Biomedical Enterprise sits at the crossroads of science, business, and law, poised to provide the various skill sets necessary to devise new innovations and bring them to market legally and ethically.
Bioscience industry executives suggest the need for scientists with understanding and skills related not only to the scientific method, but also to business practices and regulatory laws. Interdisciplinary programs are needed to integrate entrepreneurship and legal studies with basic science course content to create a new kind of flexibly-trained professional, with interdisciplinary preparation that can bridge gaps between the sciences and industry challenges. Graduates will be prepared to contribute not only to scientific advance but also to the entrepreneurial initiatives of their companies, academic institutions, or governmental entities. This program will specifically prepare its graduates for positions in the following professional tracks in the biomedical enterprise: research science and technical services, marketing, quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC), development and entrepreneurship, clinical trials, management and administration. With these outcomes in mind, applications will be solicited from individuals with existing backgrounds in basic science (e.g. biology, bioinformatics, chemistry, physics, or neuroscience, including successful laboratory course work and/or work experience), and who also have the interest and motivation to advance their skills with bioinstrumentation and to expand their knowledge base to business and the law.
By the end of the program, MIS graduates with a concentration in Biomedical Enterprise will acquire knowledge and skills as listed below, and master the professional preparation areas below.
Knowledge and Skills
- Current, relevant, and confident understanding of the opportunities and challenges existing at the intersection of biotechnology, entrepreneurship, and legal affairs.
- Up-to-date knowledge of biological systems in one or more of the following areas of focus: genetics, proteomics, cell biology, microbiology, immunology, virology, bioinformatics, neuroscience, or pharmacology.
- Experience with state-of-the-art equipment and instrumentation relevant for biotechnology research and development, such as genomics, proteomics, NextGen sequencing, flow cytometry, real time PCR, imaging and confocal microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and mass spectrophotometry.
- Ability to identify and participate in legal and ethical laboratory practices, project management, product testing, quality control, and marketing.
- Critical thinking, problem-solving, quantitative, and communication skills applicable to all domains in Biotechnology Enterprise.
Program Goals in Professional Preparation
- Create a new cadre of specialized scientists and practitioners ideally trained to enter or return to the state, national, and international biotechnology workforce.
- Provide an environment for preparing students and professionals to participate in a broad-based and evolving economy in biotechnology, including pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, medical devices, and preclinical or clinical research.
- Develop strengths in communication, from verbal, written, and presentation skills, through ethical conduct and professional dispositions in all settings.
- Promote creativity, teamwork, and leadership through interactive courses and real-world experience.
- Increase the number of individuals from diverse backgrounds who excel at the intersection of biotechnology, entrepreneurship, and law.