PhD in Genomics and Precision Medicine
alarm bell

Admission for the PhD in Genomics and Precision Medicine for the 2019-2020 academic year is now closed. For information about applying for the 2020-2021 academic year, please continue to monitor this site as we will post information in a few months.

alarm bell
PhD in Genomics and Precision Medicine

PhD in Genomics and Precision Medicine

An academic program catering to the needs of Qatar's growing health care sector. It provides theoretical and practical knowledge in genomics and precision medicine, and integrates patient-focused solutions.

Hamad Bin Khalifa University

Qatar is well-positioned to become a world leader in the provision of health care services, but to do so it needs to ensure that the next generation of health care professionals possess the knowledge and skills required to make the most of recent scientific developments – technological developments that are enabling experts to understand the biology of individuals at the molecular and genomics level as never before.

Mindful of the need to bring fresh thinking to graduate programs in the life sciences, Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) has created programs that, in a world first, provide advanced teaching across all aspects of genomics and precision medicine alongside extensive hands-on research and practical experience.

By offering its innovative new programs in this field, HBKU is supporting the significant efforts being made towards developing efficient, personalized medicine and patient-focused healthcare solutions in Qatar, and the world.

HBKU’s Genomics and Precision Medicine (GPM) programs are multidisciplinary graduate courses that have been designed to prepare the next generation of professionals and leaders, who will help implement the use of precision and personalized medicine in the healthcare system. The Master of Science and PhD degree paths in GPM offer students advanced knowledge and training in state-of-the-art information gathering and analysis technologies in order to integrate “omics” – the branch of biology that deals with data on global changes at the molecular level in patients – with clinical data. Students will be exposed to the latest advancements in the field of genomics and precision medicine and will explore state-of-the-art basic, clinical, technological, computational, legal and ethical aspects of a fascinating, fast-expanding sector of the life sciences.

Having completed their graduate studies at HBKU, students will be well-prepared to take leading roles in the healthcare sector as well as in academia, industry, business, public service and many other exciting career paths.

Outline for the GPM PhD program:


Year 1 Semester 1 Semester 1 : Core Classes  
Semester 2 Semester 2 : Core and Elective Classes Semester 2 : BEGIN DISSERTATION RESEARCH
  RAC Meeting
Year 2 Semester 3 Semester 3 : Elective Classes Semester 3 : DISSERTATION RESEARCH Semester 3 : RAC meeting
Semester 4 Semester 4 DISSERTATION RESEARCH Semester 4 : RAC meeting
Year 3 Semester 5 Semester 5 : DISSERTATION RESEARCH Semester 5 : RAC meeting
Semester 6 Semester 6 DISSERTATION RESEARCH Semester 6 : RAC meeting
Year 4-5 Semester 7 Semester 7 : DISSERTATION RESEARCH Semester 7 : RAC meeting
Semester 8-10 Semester 8-10 DISSERTATION RESEARCH Semester 8-10 : RAC meeting



Students take their core and elective course requirements in the first two to three semesters in the program and should aim to begin their thesis research no later than the second semester in the program.

During their tenure in the PhD program, students will have regular meetings with their Research Advisory Committee (RAC) - a committee that will give advice and help oversee the student’s progress.

In Year 2, students take the Qualifying Examination. This exam determines whether the student is ready to begin a period of research aimed towards a PhD. The examination provides the Qualifying Examination Committee and the student with means to assess the student’s mastery of the basic body of knowledge and development of the breadth and depth of scholarship that is expected of PhD candidates. 

After Year 3, students take the Candidacy Examination. This exam allows the Graduate Advisory Committee to thoroughly examine the student's preparation for dissertation research. Successful completion of the Candidacy Examination indicates that the student has a broad and in-depth background in biomedical sciences. It marks the watershed from taking courses to being a full-time researcher. 

To obtain their PhD, a student will have to write their dissertation and successfully defend it orally.

Program Focus

The exploration of a rigorous curriculum and practical training designed to provide a strong foundation as well as cutting-edge knowledge in both theoretical and applied aspects of genomics and precision medicine 

The development of vital professional skills, such as clear verbal and written communication, integrated teamwork, critical evaluation of others’ work, as well as each student’s own work 

Students will be exposed to the latest advancements in the field of genomics and precision medicine and will explore state-of-the-art basic, clinical, technological, computational, and legal and ethical aspects of a fascinating, fast-expanding sector of the life sciences 

Throughout their studies, students will examine aspects of the four main pillars of genomics and precision medicine: clinical aspects, technology, “omics”, and bioethics 



A program consisting of a minimum of 54 credits, taught in English, typically over four to five years that includes:

  • Mandatory foundation courses

  • A minimum of three elective courses

  • Participation in departmental seminars

  • Participation in the GPM journal club

  • Thesis work and laboratory training (a minimum of six semesters)

View Admission & Application Requirements