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Program Overview

The unique and innovative Master of Science (MSc) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Translational Medicine are the first research-based graduate programs focused on translational medicine at both master’s and doctoral levels in Canada. The programs are entirely unique by offering a curriculum interweaving graduate level research with authentic clinical experiences in a multidisciplinary environment across departments at Queen’s University.

As the first of its kind, the programs link graduate level research skills with a variety of clinical experiences including patient interactions, clinical observerships and medical rounds to enhance professional thinking and action. This unique curriculum offers important foundation work for future careers in the biomedical field, and provides critical skills for pursuing careers that include clinician scientists, biomedical researchers, leaders in industry and public health and/or health policy.

Both the MSc and PhD in Translational Medicine are research-based programs, which requires the completion of 12-credit courses, including three new mandatory core courses in translational medicine and 3 credits of elective course(s) chosen from students’ area of interests, and thesis research. PhD students also have the requirement of a comprehensive exam.

Core Course:
* = courses that are one term in length. Courses are 3 credits unless otherwise stated

The flagship course entitled Translational Medicine includes faculty lectures, interactive patient sessions, and clinical observerships. In the experiential course, Profession of Medicine, students attend weekly Medical Grand Rounds becoming immersed in the professional environment of medicine. The third course, Research Success Skills, educate students about study design, as well as ethical and regulatory requirements for biomedical research.

TMED* 800 Translational Medicine

Students are educated in the translation of medical knowledge from a variety of medical disciplines. Classroom sessions are divided into a traditional lecture, followed by an interactive discussion and a 3-minute student presentation. Clinical observerships involve direct placement within various clinics. Students are expected to write a review article on the topic of their thesis research.


Chairs: Dr. Paula James and Dr. Mark Ormiston

TMED 801 Profession of Medicine

This course immerses students in the professional learning environment of Medicine. Course content consists of attendance at a minimum number of weekly Medical Grand Rounds, followed by facilitated small group discussions. Student seminars are held during the winter term for presentation of thesis research proposals.


Chair: Dr. Rachel Holden

TMED 802 Research Success Skills

This course provides the students with essential skills required to be a successful researcher.  Instructions on study design, ethical and regulatory requirements for biomedical research are provided through completion of online modules. Library sessions are included to teach strategies to search biomedical literature. Students are expected to write a CIHR Canada Graduate Scholarship application and laboratory/research skills related to their thesis research are evaluated.


Chair: Dr. Anne Ellis

ELECTIVES

Additional electives may be approved by the program director and students' supervisor, depending on the research interests of the student.

TMED 811 Next Generation Sequencing

This one-credit course teaches students the theoretical and practical basis of high-throughput genomics and transcriptomics. The course is a combination of classroom lectures, practical bench science and practical computing. Students learn to design, implement and analyze an experiment using next generation sequencing technology and be expected to demonstrate these skills in the course assignments.

 

BMED 862 Cellular Techniques

This one-credit course is part of a suite of methodology courses being developed for the graduate program in Biomedical and Molecular Sciences intended to familiarize graduate students with the principles and practice of cutting edge technologies used in biomedical and molecular sciences research. The objective of this course is to familiarize graduate students with the principles and practice of cutting edge technologies used for protein and peptide analysis involved in biomedical research.

BMED 865 Imaging Analysis

This one-credit course is part of a suite of methodology courses being developed for the graduate program in Biomedical and Molecular Sciences intended to familiarize graduate students with the principals and practice of cutting edge technologies used for imaging analysis involved in biomedical and molecular sciences research.  This particular course will introduce students to wide field epifluorescence microscopy, confocal microscopy, immunohistochemistry, imaging of live cells and fluorescence recovery after photobleaching.

BMED 869 Reproduction

The objective of this course is to familiarize graduate students with the principles and practice of cutting edge technologies used in reproductive and developmental biology involved in biomedical and molecular sciences research.  This specific offering of the course will focus on methods to study developmental toxicity. This unit will include an introductory lecture, hands on laboratory experience and a take home assignment.

BMED 809* Principles and Drug Discovery and Development

This is a problem-based course focusing on and consisting of discussions of receptor theory, mechanisms of drug action, drug metabolism, pharmacokinetics, pharmacogenetics and pharmacogenomics, and drug transport.  The course comprises lectures, problem-solving discussions and seminars, based on recent literature.

BMED 811* Advanced Molecular Biology

This course concentrates on the molecular biology of mammalian models particularly mechanisms involved in human diseases. The human genome project, forensic analysis, DNA diagnostics of human diseases, models of transcriptional and growth regulation and cancer, DNA repair, RNA processing and translation are all discussed. Emphasis on recent findings and course materials will be drawn from current reviews.

NSCI 844* Controversies in Neuroscience

As insight regarding the human brain expands, so do issues such as what constitutes personhood, what drives the criminal mind, intelligence-enhancing drugs and end-of-life decisions, to name a few. Lead by experts who deal daily with such concerns, this course will focus weekly on a particular topic in neuroscience which impacts on society.

EPID 803* Public Health System in Canada

This course provides an overview of the public health system in Canada including the provision of health care services. The first section of the course provides a history and overview of the Canadian public health care system, including how health services are organized and financed, as well as an introduction to health policy. The second section of the course highlights health care delivery, focusing on federal and provincial health care delivery, and both major and specialized health care delivery systems.

EPID 810* Controlled Clinical Trials

This course will cover material relevant to the design and conduct of controlled clinical trials. Design topics will include methods used to achieve unbiased results with improved precision, such as adequate sample size, randomization, blinding, pre- and post-stratification, cross-over designs, placebos and the counting of relevant events. Attention will be given to the problem of conducting multi-centre clinical trials. Topics covered will include drafting of protocols, design of data forms, logistics of data flow, methods of follow-up, data management and quality control, periodic reporting, final data analysis and the production of final reports. Ethical issues and the role of randomized trials in clinical investigation will be discussed.

PATH 822* Experimental Cancer Therapeutics

The aim of this course is to introduce and discuss essential questions on the basic science of experimental therapeutics for the treatment of cancer. Topics will include discussions on: new drug development; molecular and signaling pathways involved in tumour genesis; challenges with existing cancer therapeutics; molecular approaches to profiling human cancer signatures; drug discovery and delivery; imaging, preclinical and clinical testing of novel therapies to assess efficacy and validate drug targets; and clinical trial results and the molecular basis for variability in tumour responses. A general theme for the course will be how to identify an experimental target or novel therapeutic, and translate the results into an improved therapy for the treatment of cancer.

PATH 826* The Molecular Basis of Disease

This course covers several diseases and integrates the genetic, biochemical, physiologic, anatomic, and general etiologic factors which play a role in the progression of each disease from its inception to death or recovery. The perspective will demonstrate that each disease is the result of an evolving interplay of genetic and environmental factors.

 

Admission Requirements
(Application deadline for September 2021 is now closed)

In order to be considered for admission, applicants for the MSc in Translational Medicine program need to hold an undergraduate honours degree with a minimum of a B+ average in the last two years of their program, and applicants for the PhD program need to hold a master’s degree with a minimum of an A- average. 

How can I apply?

Applications for admission are completed and submitted on the School of Graduate Studies website (https://eservices.queensu.ca/apps/sgsapp/), including an online application form and specific instructions regarding how to submit the following documents:

  • A Statement of Interest about how applicants’ background experiences and career aspirations make them ideally suited for the program (up to 4000 characters in the online application);
  • Transcripts for all postsecondary education;
  • Two references from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic performance.

In addition to the online application and the above required documents, applicants are required to submit an electronic resumé/curriculum vitae to tmed@queensu.ca.    

Note: Referees are notified that you want them to provide a reference for you by email after you have submitted your online application, so please submit your application at least two weeks before the application deadline and be sure to include the correct email addresses of your referees on your online application. Applications will not be deemed complete and will not be reviewed by the admissions committee until all listed references are received.

Language Requirements

In cases where English is not the first language, nor was the language of instruction in undergraduate studies, applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency. Those applicants will need to provide proof of English language proficiency through one of the following:

  1. International English Language Testing System (Academic module) with a minimum score of 7 in each component, or
  2. TOEFL iBT with a passing score of 93 including a minimum score of 24 on the speaking section.

Please note that these requirements are higher than the minimum standards set by the School of Graduate Studies (https://www.queensu.ca/sgs/prospective-students/how-apply). Students will be involved in observing the clinical care of patients, and hence a thorough understanding and ability to communicate in English is essential.

However, if in the 12-month period prior to the month of application, an applicant has studied for at least one complete year at a post-secondary institution where English is the official language of instruction, a request to be exempted from the English language proficiency test requirement may be made to the Director of Admissions, School of Graduate Studies.

Tuition & Funding

The tuition of our MSc and PhD in Translational Medicine is the same as other research graduate programs at Queen’s, which is set at $5,772.99 (domestic rate) and $12,927.45 (international rate) for the 2020-21 academic year. Please visit the Office of the University Registrar for more details on tuition and fees: http://www.queensu.ca/registrar/financials/tuition-fees. Students enrolled in the programs will receive funding packages to assist with living expenses and coverage of tuition: MSc – minimum $21,000 per year for 2 years; PhD – minimum $23,000 per year for 4 years.

MSc in Translational Medicine

The Master of Science (MSc) in Translational Medicine requires, at minimum, the completion of 12 credit units, including three new core courses in translational medicine (TMED 800, 801, & 802) and 3-credit in elective course(s) chosen from students’ area of interests, and a thesis research project. Students registered in the MSc in Translational Medicine with first-class standing (a minimum A- average, equivalent to 3.7 GPA or  80%), and who show exceptional promise in their research may be considered for promotion to the PhD in Translational Medicine, without completion of the MSc.

MSc in Translational Medicine (duration: 24 months):

 

Year 1

Year 2

Fall

Winter

Spring/Summer

Fall

Winter

Spring/Summer

TMED 800

 

Research Proposal/

Progress Report

Research/

Thesis Draft

Thesis Defense

TMED 801

TMED 802
Elective (Fall or Winter)

Research Commences

 

PhD in Translational Medicine

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Translational Medicine has the same coursework requirements such that students who have completed the MSc in Translational Medicine will be granted advanced standing and have no further coursework to complete thus providing an accelerated route to PhD completion. The PhD program also requires completion of a comprehensive exam and thesis research.

PhD in Translational Medicine (duration: 48 months)

Year 1

Year 2

Fall

Winter

Spring/Summer

Fall

Winter

Spring/Summer

TMED 800

 

 

Research Proposal

Progress Report

(Year 1)

 

Comprehensive

Exam

(oral defense)/

Progress Report

(Year 2)

TMED 801

TMED 802

Elective (Fall or Winter)

Research

Commences

 

 Year 3

Year 4

Fall

Winter

Spring/Summer

Fall

Winter

Spring/Summer

Research/Progress Report
(Year 3)

 

Thesis Draft

Thesis
Defense

The graduate program in cancer research is multidisciplinary collaborative program that provides students with opportunities to pursue their studies within nationally, and internationally recognized centres of Cancer Research excellence at Queen's University. 

The program encourages interactions of researchers and students with common interests in cancer, regardless of departmental home, and at the same time facilitates productive interaction between individuals involved in different research areas, all focused on different aspects of cancer research.

It is jointly offered by the various graduate programs including Translational Medicine, Departments of Biomedical & Molecular Sciences, Pathology & Molecular Medicine, Public Health Sciences, and Psychology. This program provides students with centralized access to the broad range of cancer research and educational opportunities available to them within the Faculty of Health Sciences, and at Queen's University as a whole.

Faculty Members

Dr. Stephen Archer, Professor
Research Areas: Cancer Genetics, Gene Regulation and Molecular Diagnostics 
Lab: https://deptmed.queensu.ca/research/teams/qcpu

Dr. Janet Dancey, Professor
Research Areas: Cancer Clinical Trials and Cancer 

Dr. Annette Hay, Associate Professor
Research Areas: Immuno-oncology

Dr. Mark Ormiston, Assistant Professor
Research Areas: Drug Development & Experimental Therapeutics
Lab: www.ormistonlab.com


For more information or to register please visit https://www.queensu.ca/cancergradprogram/.

 

We are excited to announce our Combined BSc/MSc (Translational Medicine) Program.

This program is designed for exceptional Queen's undergraduate students:

1.      who are interested in research and further pursue a master’s degree;

2.      who have an overall minimum A- average in the previous four completed academic terms;

Qualified students could apply for admission to the combined program (permission to take graduate-level courses) in the winter term of the 3rd year, in parallel with the process for admittance to the Honours year and the thesis research project. Applications to the combined program will be reviewed by the Translational Medicine Program Committee.

Admission to the combined program is a two-step process:

1. Students need to submit their application to tmed@queensu.ca, providing a copy of their transcripts, an abstract of their proposed research project (500 words) with a translational focus, an elective graduate course that students wish to enroll, and the name of a faculty member in Translational Medicine willing to supervise their 4th year thesis project. The elective graduate course could either be a combined undergraduate/graduate (400/800 level) course or a graduate only course (800 level). 

  1. To be considered for the combined program, students will need to enroll in one of the 4th year thesis project courses (including any of the 499 courses: ANAT499, CANC499, MICR499, NSCI499, PHAR499, PHGY499 or BCHM 421/422) and work with a faculty member from the Translational Medicine program. The 4th year thesis project will become the foundation for students’ MSc thesis, and the same faculty member would normally become the supervisor of the student in the MSc program.

  2. Students must obtain the course coordinator’s permission to enroll in the elective graduate course. If the student wants to take two graduate courses in the fourth year of their undergraduate degree, one of those courses must be TMED 802 (Research Success Skills). In order for the student to be granted advanced standing in the M.Sc. degree program, they must have received a final grade of at least B- (B minus) in the graduate courses taken during the 4th year.

2. For admission to the MSc in Translational Medicine with advanced standing, students need to complete the standard SGS application process in their fourth year, have an overall minimum A- average in the previous two years of their undergraduate program, and have demonstrated significant research potential and productivity in the 4th year thesis project. More information for this step could be found at (under “Prospective Students”): https://deptmed.queensu.ca/academics/translational-medicine-graduate-programs/program-overview


Students will receive essential graduate research training both through the courses and in their 4th year research project, which lay the essential foundation for their master’s thesis. Therefore, students in the combined program can reduce the time to obtain the MSc degree by up to two full terms. The combined program will enrich students’ learning experiences, provide advanced standing in their graduate studies, increase their research productivity and success rates for external scholarships and awards.

 

MSc students currently enrolled in the TMED program with exceptional research promise and demonstrated academic excellence have the possiblity to be promoted to the PhD program without completing the full MSc (usually completed PhD within 3 additonal years). 
 
In order to quality, current students must have the following:
  • Achieved first class standing (3.7 GPA or higher)
  • Demonstrated exceptional promise in research
  • Received recommendation and support of Supervisor, Advisory Committee, Graduate Program Committee and Graduate Program Director
  • Applied before the end of the 2nd year of the MSc program

Please note this option is only available for current MSc students of the Translational Medicine Graduate Program.