I have a lot of independence, but also help when I need it. I don't know the answers yet, but I've got a promising way to start looking for them."
Rockefeller's Ph.D. program is based on the concept of learning science by doing science, and our laboratories are at the center of the Ph.D. training program. There are 76 laboratories at Rockefeller, each headed by a tenured or tenure-track member of the faculty, that study everything from biochemistry to genetics to immunology to neuroscience to biophysics.
There is no required core curriculum for the Ph.D. student. In consultation with the dean of graduate studies, students choose a flexible combination of courses totaling seven academic units. One unit generally consists of 12 classes. Several courses consist of 24 classes and count as two units. Evaluation of satisfactory course completion typically consists of a brief written or oral examination, or preparation of a short research review or proposal. Courses are grouped into six major areas, but students can complete the curriculum requirements by participation in any combination of courses. If the Rockefeller curriculum does not meet a specific educational need, in many cases students can take courses offered outside the university.