Jul 20, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Biomedical Physics, PhD

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Certificates, Degrees, and other Graduate Programs (listed alphabetically)

Program Coordinator: Michael Dingfelder (127 Austin Building; 252-328-0882; dingfelderm@ecu.edu)

The primary objective of the Biomedical Physics, PhD is to graduate scientists who can apply the tools and concepts of physics to solve significant biological and medical problems and advance our understanding of fundamental biomedical processes. Core curricula in both applied physics and biomedical areas are designed to provide training for students with diverse backgrounds in physics, applied physics, biochemistry, and engineering. All students are required to complete a dissertation under supervision of a faculty advisor.


Students are admitted either to the PhD program alone or to the Integrated PhD and MS in Physics – medical physics concentration.

The applicant preferably holds a master’s degree in physics, applied physics, medical physics, or related fields. Applicants holding a baccalaureate degree in above mentioned fields showing significant potential for the PhD program may be considered for acceptance. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in graduate work is required.

The following documents are required before final admission is approved: completed application form for admission to Graduate School, official transcripts from colleges and universities attended, letters of reference from three persons who can attest to the applicant’s academic competence, and an essay describing the applicant’s career goals and research interests which are consistent with the educational opportunities offered in the PhD program.

International students may need to demonstrate English proficiency as approved by the Graduate School. (https://gradschool.ecu.edu/international-students/)

Degree Requirements

The degree requires a minimum of 50 s.h. (post-master’s) and 78 s.h. (post-baccalaureate) as follows: 

Post-master’s requirements - 50 s.h.

Dissertation - 36 s.h. (minimum)

Knowledge of high-level computer language requirement

Students must demonstrate a working knowledge of at least one high-level computer languages, such as FORTRAN or C. PHYS 5900 and Phys 5901 may be taken to satisfy this requirement, but credits cannot be counted toward the minimum degree requirement. 

Post-baccalaureate requirements - 78 s.h.

(Students entering the program with a baccalaureate degree are required to complete the Physics, MS  applied physics concentration coursework with thesis.)

Applied electives - 6 s.h.

(Select 6 s.h. from the following.)

Dissertation - 36 s.h. (minimum)

Course and Residence Requirements

Additional courses may be required by the graduate committee, depending on the individual student’s preparation. Students must complete at least five consecutive semesters in residence (excluding summers).

Integrated PhD and MS in Physics - Medical Physics Concentration

Students admitted to this concentration need to fulfill independently all requirements for both the MS in physics-medical physics concentration and the PhD in biomedical physics. Both degrees will be awarded concurrently.

Transfer Credits

Because of the broad interest and collaborative nature of the PhD program, the graduate committee will evaluate transfer credits on a case-by-case basis. A maximum of 6 s.h. of transfer credit may be accepted.

If a student enrolls in this program and already has the equivalent of the 12 s.h. beyond the master’s degree, he or she may petition the graduate committee for a waiver or substitution for these courses.

Time Limits for Completing the Program

Students entering the PhD program should complete it by the end of five years following initial enrollment. With the endorsement of the advisory committee, a student having deficiencies in preparation may request an extension of no more than two years.

Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Certificates, Degrees, and other Graduate Programs (listed alphabetically)