Graduate and Residency Training Programs

Advanced study in the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology is offered via graduate programs leading to Master of Science and Doctoral degrees, through specialized residencies, and through postdoctoral research appointments. These programs provide in-depth training to prepare students for careers in research, teaching, and diagnostic and government services in research areas including microbiology, immunology, molecular genetics, parasitology, pathology, comparative medicine, toxicology, emerging and vector-borne infectious diseases, and genomics. Training opportunities are varied and depend upon the focus and career goals of the student. The faculty of the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology consists of more than 35 scientists engaged in a wide variety of research programs supported by government, foundation, and private industry-sponsored grants and contracts.

Faculty in the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology participate in a number of interdepartmental and multidisciplinary graduate programs including the following:

The College of Veterinary Medicine offers a Master of Science degree in Biomedical Sciences with a specialization in veterinary pathobiology and/or laboratory animal medicine, which is administered through the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology. The Master of Science degree requires 30 credit hours of work including courses, seminars, research, and problems courses. The program includes research in a particular field and defense of a thesis which embodies the results of this work. Certain areas of emphasis require submission of a formal master’s thesis while others require preparation of a publishable manuscript.

The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree is offered by the Pathobiology Area Graduate Program composed of faculty from the College of Veterinary Medicine, School of Medicine, College of Arts and Science, and College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, who have a wide range of interests and specialties in pathology and microbiology. The Program is designed to prepare students for advanced professional careers in universities and colleges, research institutes, public health, hospital laboratories and industrial research. The Ph.D. requires 72 credit hours of work including a minimum of 15 credits of upper level graduate course work exclusive of research credits. The student must pass a comprehensive examination in the area of study, and write, present, and defend a dissertation which embodies the results of original and significant investigation by the candidate.

The Department of Veterinary Pathobiology, in partnership with the Department of Molecular Microbiology & Immunology in the School of Medicine, offers a comprehensive graduate program leading to the Ph.D. degree. This program provides individualized training that is strongly oriented toward basic research in molecular and cellular biology, immunology and host-parasite interactions. Graduates completing this training are prepared to pursue challenging and rewarding professional careers that involve research and teaching at supervisory levels in both the academic and private sectors. More information regarding this program and links to an online application can be found here.

The Genetics Area Graduate Program is an interdisciplinary Ph.D. program that prepares students for research or teaching careers in genetics. As genetic analysis is used in all aspects of biological research, this Program includes approximately 60 life sciences faculty from multiple departments and Colleges at the University of Missouri. More information regarding this program can be found here.

The Comparative Medicine Residency Program provides advanced graduate training to veterinarians who wish to pursue careers in comparative medicine. Trainees may combine one year of residency training in clinical, administrative and diagnostic laboratory animal medicine with two or more years of research training. Alternatively, trainees with experience in laboratory animal medicine, comparative pathology or related disciplines may begin research training at the time of admission. Training is designed to prepare individuals for a variety of careers including comparative medicine research, clinical and administrative laboratory animal medicine, and comparative and diagnostic laboratory animal pathology. Students may either pursue an M.S. or Ph.D. Research opportunities are available in several areas including infectious disease, pathology, molecular biology, mouse biology and cardiovascular physiology. More information regarding this program can be found here.

The Residency/Graduate Program in Anatomic Veterinary Pathology is offered by the Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory, Department of Veterinary Pathobiology at the University of Missouri. The program is designed to qualify the trainee to successfully complete the anatomic pathology certification examination of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists. An abundance of case material for training in veterinary pathology is available. The laboratory is certified by the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians, with excellent diagnostic support in bacteriology, virology, serology, molecular biology, toxicology, and clinical pathology. Our faculty includes 6 board-certified diplomates in anatomic pathology, 4 diplomates of clinical pathology in the American College of Veterinary Pathologists, 2 diplomates of the American Board of Veterinary Toxicology, and 2 diplomates of the American College of Poultry Veterinarians. Residents participate in necropsy, surgical pathology, teaching programs both clinical and didactic, rounds, and required coursework.

A DVM or equivalent degree is a prerequisite. Candidates should possess a strong academic record, evidence of interest and commitment to anatomic pathology, and must be able to communicate with clients effectively. The candidate is expected to pursue a Missouri veterinary license. The trainee may become enrolled in graduate school and may pursue the M.S. degree in Veterinary Pathobiology. Typically, residency training is accomplished in 3 years. Some individuals continue research training leading to a Ph.D. degree in the area of Pathobiology. Inquiries about residency positions should be addressed to Dr. Kei Kuroki, Chair, Pathology Resident Search Committee, UMC Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211; phone 573-882-6811 or E-mail: