QCB Certificate Requirements
Requirements for Admission
There are two possible tracks for entry into the Quantitative and Computational Biology certificate program:
- For those students who have completed the integrated science curriculum ISC/CHM/COS/MOL/PHY 231-4 as a freshman and ISC/CHM/COS/MOL/PHY 235/6 during their sophomore year.
- For those students who have not taken the integrated science series, the following courses are the minimum that must be completed before the end of their sophomore year:
- COS 126 or higher
- MOL 342
- PHY 103/4 or higher
- CHM 201/2 or higher
- One year of math as a Princeton undergraduate
An application form is required by May 31 of sophomore year. Send completed application to Jennifer Brick at jbrick at princeton.edu. Admission decisions are made by June 30. Important information to include in the application:
- Prerequisite courses
- Plans for courses in junior and senior year
- Plans for independent work
- QCB 301 Project Lab, taken in the fall of junior year.
- COS/MOL 551/455 Computational Molecular Biology & Genomics
- Senior thesis with a strong component of quantitative and computational analysis
Molecular Biology majors will be required to take 8 departmentals:
- MOL 350: Laboratory in Molecular Biology-taken in spring of sophomore year
- MOL 348: Cell & Developmental Biology
- COS/MOL 551/455: Introduction to Genomics & Computational Molecular Biology
- QCB 301/2-Project Lab (would count as 2 departmentals)
- 3 other science or math courses (Students are strongly encouraged to take APC/MOL 360: Biological Dynamics or EEB 355: Introduction to Biostatistics.)
- Molecular Biology majors will do a quantitative or computationally-oriented junior paper in the spring of their junior year.
- Seniors will choose a thesis project under the broad umbrella of quantitative or computational biology and with a faculty member and project approved by the QCB Program Committee.
- For students who enter the program without taking the integrated courses, it is expected that many will also take organic chemistry (CHM301/2 or CHM303/4), as well as biochemistry (MOL345). These will also fulfill the MOL departmental requirement.
A minimum of a B average in program courses, and junior and senior independent work are required for successful completion of the program. Program courses cannot be taken Pass/D/Fail.
Students who pursue a Certificate in QCB may not receive a Certificate in Biophysics.
Physics majors may take half of a semester of MOL 350- Laboratory in Molecular Biology and half a semester of PHY 311/312-Experimental Physics in the spring of their junior year. One Junior Paper and the senior thesis should be QCB related. The normal sequence of required courses in Physics can be shifted to accommodate the QCB junior Project Lab.
Computer Science majors are required to take 8 CS departmentals. The junior paper and senior thesis must be QCB related. Students interested in the QCB certificate should speak with Prof. Ken Steiglitz (AB track) or Prof. Brian Kernighan (BSE track) as early as possible to plan their course of study.
Chemistry majors are required to take four 300, 400 or 500 level courses in chemistry (at least one term each of organic, physical, inorganic and experimental chemistry) plus four science cognates at the 300, 400 or 500 level. MOL 350: Laboratory in Molecular Biology can be substituted for CHM 371/2: Experimental Chemistry. One Junior Paper and the senior thesis should be QCB related.
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology majors are required to take eight EEB departmentals at least five of which must normally be upper-level EEB or MOL courses. One Junior Paper and the senior thesis should be QCB related.
Students interested in a BSE degree should contact Associate Dean Peter Bogucki in SEAS for general information and EE majors should contact Prof. Bradley Dickinson.
Junior and Senior Independent work
Junior and senior independent work should be arranged with the help of the Program Director and Committee, and supervised by the faculty in the various home departments. The senior thesis should make significant use of computational or quantitative methods.