All students accepted into the Medical Doctor (MD) program at XUSOM will also be accepted into our optional Master of Medical Science-Biotechnology (MD/MSc).  Our dual degree program was designed with our students in mind to earn a Masters degree alongside their MD degree.  Students who wish to earn this degree will be required to complete their 2 years of Basic Science curriculum in Aruba (20 credits will count towards the MSc Degree) and 1 year of research and thesis at the Blumberg Institute in Pennsylvania (14 credits towards MSc degree). Students who do not complete the 1 year of research at the Blumberg Institute will not be eligible for an MSc degree.

The program will give students the avenue for significant research opportunities alongside Nobel Laureate scientists.  The curriculum is intended to facilitate research opportunities while allowing our students to be even more competitive during the match process.

Though accepted into the dual degree program, students will not be required to obtain an MSc degree. Those who wish to bypass the MSc degree will be permitted. Students may opt to complete their research year after their 2 years of Clinical Science.  The MSc degree will be awarded after successful completion of Basic Science and 1 year of research as outlined in the curriculum.

MSc Curriculum:


During the MD program or during year 1 of the Masters in Biotechnology course students will be required to take a separate graduate course in Biostatistics and Bioinformatics.  The course will be broken into 3 semesters with each semester lasting 15 weeks.  This course will be in addition to the medical curriculum

Semester 1 – Biostatistics – (4 credits)

  • The first semester will focus mainly on biostatistics as indicated in the topics above.
  • There will also be lectures about the business of Biotech and basic research skills

Semester 2 – Genomics and Bioinformatics– (3 credits)

  • The second semester will cover Part 1 and Part 2 of the bioinformatics course as indicated above
  • This semester will focus on Genomics and the basics of bioinformatics and will cover Bioinformatics databases and how to perform biomolecular simulations.

Semester 3 – Bioinformatics – (3 credits)

  • The third semester will cover Part 3 and Part 4 of the bioinformatics course as indicated above
  • This semester will focus more on the bioinformatics of proteins and look specifically at protein structure and design as well as focusing on protein interaction modeling.

Research Year-(14 credits)

  • Courses will cover Molecular Biology, Advanced Cellular Biology, Human Genetics, and Biostatics
  • Dissertation or Publication in Refereed Journal

Completion of Degree

Students that successfully complete the MSc curriculum will be honored with their MSc degree after all coursework is conferred.