Lab Rotations & Transitions

Laboratory Rotations For MD/PhD Students

All students are required to perform two laboratory rotations during the first two years of medical school. These can be performed in the summers before M1 and M2 or during the school year. Participation in one of the student fellowship programs listed below will count towards a research rotation. A research rotation form must be submitted to the MD/PhD Program office prior to the start of each rotation.

Before and after each rotation, please complete the following forms.

Rotation Evaluation Rubric 2016-17.docx

Rotation Form 2016-17.docx


For additional information on fellowships, please refer to the Research Opportunities page.

Medical Student to Graduate Student (M2 to G1) Transition

During this transitional time, it is very important to work with the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) in your PhD department. The DGS will review the departmental requirements, e.g. courses, qualifying exam, etc.

Reminders for January during M2

    • Apply to The Graduate School
      A graduate school application has to be completed during January of the second year of medical school. Here are the steps for applying to The Graduate School: 
        • Once the Graduate Department has been established and notified, submit the online application to the Graduate School here. Apply to the IBS Program and specify the Graduate Program, or IBS Specialization. Once your online application has been submitted and you have paid the application fee, follow up with an email to Vivian Bowling to alert her of your recent MD/PhD application. In your email, please include the following: Not applying to IBS; I am applying for MD/PhD in [specify Graduate Program or IBS Specialization here]. In addition, please notify the MD/PhD Program office via email that your online application has been submitted to the Graduate School.
          International Students: please contact Vivian Bowling for assistance with applying to The Graduate School.
          • Pay the application fee. It is necessary to pay the application fee in order for your application to be processed. Go here for more information on the application fee.
            • Submit all requested documents to The Graduate School and to the appropriate DGS.
            • All recommendation letters should go to the department's DGS prior to submitting your application.
            • Documents to submit to The Graduate School, Attn: Vivian Bowling:
                • Photocopy of official MCAT scores
                • Official transcripts from your undergraduate institution
                • Official transcripts from the College of Medicine (COM)
                • The Graduate School
                  University of Kentucky 
                  Attn: Vivian Bowling
                  201A Gillis Building 
                  Lexington, KY 40506-0033

                • In addition, submit a photocopy of Official Transcripts to the appropriate DGS

              Please note: once Vivian Bowling has received your application, your application fee has been paid, and you have submitted all requested documents to The Graduate School and the appropriate DGS, the DGS of your intended Graduate Program will be notified of your application. It is important that your email address is current on your application, as you will be notified by email of admission from The Graduate School.

          1. Academic Leave of Absence from the College of Medicine
            During this time it will also be necessary to request an academic leave of absence from medical school.
          2. Complete the Student Compact
            The student compact is an agreement between the student and the mentor developed by the AAMC. The compact should be signed by both the student and mentor and returned to the MD/PhD program office.
            View the Student Compact.

          Graduate Student Returning to Medical Student (G3 to M3) Transition

          • Student Progress and Promotions Committee (College of Medicine) Update
            Each spring, MD/PhD students conducting research must update the SPPC on their plans for the upcoming year. During your final year as a graduate student, this update should indicate that you are planning to return to medical school to begin your clinical rotations.Approximate dates for your thesis defense, if known, and any information concerning ways that you have been preparing to re-enter medical school may be included in this update. Contact Chipper Griffith, MD, Associate Dean for Student Affairs, or Todd Cheever, MD, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, to discuss this further.
          • Dissertation Timing and Instructions
            Your advisor and advisory committee will be able to help you craft your thesis in terms of content and presentation. In addition, you will want to think about and discuss the following items with your advisor and committee at least six months to a year before you plan to transition to medical school: the timing to complete your experiments, entering and completing your writing phase, and defending your dissertation is something. If it appears that you will need to work concomitantly on your thesis after starting clinical training, you should discuss this with both the MD/PhD Program director and the Associate Dean for Student Affairs, Chipper Griffith, MD, or the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, Todd Cheever, MD, to devise an individualized plan.
          • Writing and Defending a Dissertation
            Full instructions for Writing and Defending a Dissertation are available online.. There are important instructions and deadlines for writing and scheduling your dissertation defense. Please refer to the links below for more information:
          • Clinical Preparation Before Third Year
            There are both administration-coordinated and individually-initiated opportunities to reconnect with medical studies while in graduate school. The Associate Dean for Student Affairs, Chipper Griffith, MD, or the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, Todd Cheever, MD, can help you coordinate with the director of second-year Introduction to the Medical Profession (IMP) to audit all or some of the class during your last year as a graduate student. The Dean may also help you identify willing clinical mentors for one-on-one training. Other clinical preparation strategies are possible, and you can discuss your own ideas with both the Associate Dean for Student Affairs, Chipper Griffith, MD, or the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, Todd Cheever, MD, and the MD/PhD Program director.
          • Choosing a Clinical Rotation Schedule
            You can view the Schedule of Rotation Groups by visiting the Third-year page on the Student Affairs web site.