Master of Physiology Degree, Non-Thesis Option

Degree Objectives

To provide a non-thesis Pre-Health Master’s Degree program for students seeking to improve their academic credentials and become more competitive for admission to a professional school (i.e., health professions including: Medicine (MD & DO), Dentistry, Nursing, Optometry, Physician Assistant, Physical Therapy, and Veterinary Medicine).  Some students employ the Degree program as a terminal degree to enter the Athletic Training field or another Physiology-related career.


The Non-Thesis Master’s degree also allows individuals who desire to improve their knowledge of modern physiology to obtain a degree without a requirement to perform research or prepare a formal presentation on their own research project.  However, students in this program may perform research if they so choose, as it serves to create a more unique and competitive application when applying to these programs.

Option B Master’s Degree Guidelines

From the Graduate Handbook:

The Option B Master’s degree requires that students adhere to the general guidelines for a Master of Arts or Master of Science degree with the following exceptions:

  • A comprehensive oral exam is not required
  • A thesis is not required
  • Departmental research credit hours will not be included as part of the course work
  • Individual departments define other requirements for their Option B program, such as additional course work or final projects

Option B Master’s degree programs may not carry an officially designated minor

Students have a single assigned advisor rather than an advisory committee.



Program Outline

36 total credit-hours with the following required courses:

  • PHY 503, General Physiology I (3 credits), 
  • PHY 504 General Physiology II (3 credits),  
  • BCH 553 Biochemistry of Gene Expression (3 credits)

PLUS ONE 1-credit ethics course to be chosen from the following:

  • PHI 816: Introduction to Research Ethics
  • CBS 662: Professional Conduct in Biomedical Research
  • BIT 501: Ethical Issues in Biotechnology

The student will work with an academic advisor to assure appropriate course selection.

Note: Enrollment in PHY 601, Physiology Seminar is not required for the non-thesis MOP Program.

IMPORTANT: *400-level courses taken in PBS status are NOT transferable into a graduate program.

Depending on particular program requirements, a student may take 400-level courses for graduate credit provided that they are outside the student’s major and the program is not at the doctoral level. However, no more than six (6) credit hours at the 400-level may apply toward master’s degree requirements and no more than one course of up to four (4) credit hours may be used for a graduate certificate. No 400-level courses may be used toward a doctoral degree. Full policy may be found here.


Transfer Credit Policies for the NC State Graduate School may be found here.


MOP Advisors

The non-thesis Master’s degree will be provided with an approved Physiology Faculty sponsor, also known as an advisor and submission of a Plan of Work but will not require a formal committee or final exam, unless a library or laboratory research project is part of the Plan of Work.