Jul 14, 2024  
2012-2014 Undergraduate Catalog 

Graduate & Professional Programs


Graduate College
Offering nearly 120 graduate degree programs, including 36 doctoral and professional degrees, UNLV provides wide-ranging and unique areas of study to more than 6,000 graduate and professional students. The UNLV Graduate College seeks to provide its students with the highest quality academic experience, including excellent opportunities for research, scholarship, and creative activity. 

The university’s advanced degree programs are based on close working relationships between students and faculty. Although most programs can be developed to meet the needs and interests of the individual student, the student must also satisfy all departmental and Graduate College requirements. Therefore, it is important that all students carefully read the appropriate sections of this catalog and stay in close contact with the faculty members in their degree program. Students are responsible for being aware of and observing the policies and regulations stated in the Graduate Catalog.

William S. Boyd School of Law
The William S. Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, offers both a three-year, full-time day program and four-year, part-time programs (day and evening) for the Juris Doctor degree. Entering classes have approximately 140 students.

The mission of the Boyd School of Law is to prepare students for the competent and ethical practice of law. At the same time, the Boyd School of Law recognizes that the skills and knowledge acquired in the law school may be transferred easily to other fields of endeavor and that many students seek legal training for the value it may have in pursuits other than the practice of law. The Boyd School of Law is dedicated to preserving, transmitting, and advancing the current state of legal knowledge, to developing programs that meet the changing needs of society; and to encouraging its graduates to apply the knowledge they gain for their own personal development and for the good of society.

Pre-law Students: Law schools neither prescribe nor encourage any specific undergraduate major. A broad general education with emphasis on courses that develop clear and systematic thinking is better preparation for the study of law than is specialized study in subjects closely related to law. Most important for prospective law students is that they develop a command of the English language and the ability to communicate ideas clearly, logically, and critically.

Students are encouraged to discuss pre-law interests with Dr. Rebecca Ward, Assistant Professor, Political Science Department, at 702-895-2525.

Phi Alpha Delta, a pre-law fraternity associated with the pre-law association, is also very active in helping pre-law students. For information on joining, contact the Consolidated Students (CSUN) office.

Curriculum: The Boyd School of Law maintains a curriculum that responds to the needs of the students as well as the needs of the profession and adopts for its curriculum the best aspects of traditional and skills-oriented legal education. The core curriculum is designed to teach students to “think like lawyers”; to enable students to comprehend, analyze, and synthesize complex material; and to effectively communicate solutions. Throughout the curriculum, the Boyd School of Law emphasizes writing, professionalism, and community service. Students must complete 89 hours of course work in the J.D. program.

Selection of Applicants: To be eligible to apply for admission to the Boyd School of Law, applicants must have an undergraduate degree from an accredited four-year college or university and must have taken the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). The Boyd School of Law seeks to enroll an accomplished and diverse group of women and men who will contribute to the enrichment of the educational program of the school and to the community and the profession after graduation. The law school seeks students who have demonstrated significant accomplishments in their lives, for example, by achieving distinguished academic records as undergraduate or graduate students, by engaging successfully in important and challenging careers, by providing significant service to their communities, or by meeting challenges associated with their race, ethnicity, gender, economic status or disability. The law school seeks to have a student body that is both academically well-qualified and diverse. The presence in the school of students who have diverse backgrounds, attitudes, and interests contributes to the breadth and quality of the classroom and non-classroom dialogue, which is a critical element of legal education.

Accreditation: The William S. Boyd School of Law at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas is fully accredited by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools.

More Information: For further information about the William S. Boyd School of Law, please call 702-895-2440 or visit the law school’s website at www.law.unlv.edu.

Pre-Professional Students
Many students plan to seek admission to health-related professional schools that provide advanced degrees in specialties such as medicine, osteopathic medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry, optometry, pharmacy, podiatry and chiropractic. UNLV provides a complete array of courses that are required by professional schools for admittance. Students who plan to apply to a professional school should be aware of the existence of the UNLV Pre-Professional Interview Committee. This committee consists of faculty from a variety of disciplines, including non-science areas, and health care professionals from the community. The committee interviews students prior to their applications to professional schools and writes letters of recommendation. For more information about pre-professional preparation, contact the Chair of the UNLV Pre-Professional Interview Committee, Joseph Nika, at 702-895-3170.

School of Dental Medicine
The UNLV School of Dental Medicine, which accepted its Inaugural Class in August of 2002, has been designed to serve our local community and the state of Nevada in oral health care, health services, research and scholarly activities. Education of dental students will be accomplished through a competency-based curriculum with a special emphasis on biomedical sciences; professional studies; and an innovative, vertically integrated team approach for clinical instruction and delivery of patient care. The School of Dental Medicine is employs a diverse and distinguished faculty to facilitate the program.

The competency-based education program has at its core a student and patient-centered environment designed to maximize learning and patient care delivery. Student doctors will be exposed to in-depth studies of biological and clinical sciences as well as biomedical and bio-ethical disciplines. They will encounter a broad spectrum of clinical experiences to prepare them for entry into the profession. These experiences will begin in year one of the curriculum, and clinical responsibilities will expand in scope and depth throughout the four years. They will also have extensive exposure to business and financial management designed to meet the challenges of dental practice. Furthermore, they will be introduced to principles of research, will have an opportunity to conduct independent research and will be encouraged to pursue scholarly activities with the possibility of creating a career in academic dentistry.

Training will occur in state-of-the-art facilities designed to achieve the goals of the dental academic program. Today’s dental professional needs a learning environment that offers interaction with other medical professionals and facilitates diagnosis and treatment to improve the patient’s overall health. These facilities are also home to the Advanced Dental Education Program of Orthodontics, Pediatric Dentistry and General Practice Residency. Students have access to the latest technology with other health care professionals in diagnosing disease and treating patients. By the time of graduation, students will be competent and confident to begin a rewarding career as a provider of comprehensive oral health care.

Whether the goal is to become a dental educator or a dental professional engaging in the private practice of dentistry or to further professional development in one of the dental specialty areas, the faculty and staff at UNLV’s School of Dental Medicine are poised to be partners in building a successful career.

Admission Requirements and Selection of Applicants
In agreement with guidelines established by the American Dental Education Association, admissions policies at the UNLV School of Dental Medicine will be based on specific objectives, criteria and procedures designed to identify students with high standards of integrity, motivation, and resourcefulness and with the basic knowledge and attitude required for completing the integrated curriculum. Acceptance to the UNLV School of Dental Medicine will be awarded on a competitive basis to individuals who have completed the interview process at the institution. Invitations for interview will be extended to applicants deemed appropriate and eligible for consideration. Preference is given to Nevada residents.

Prerequisite Courses:

  • One year of general biology with lab
  • One year of general chemistry with lab
  • One year of organic chemistry with lab
  • One year of general physics with lab
  • One semester of biochemistry or equivalent
  • One year of English

It is highly recommended that the applicant complete these prerequisite courses prior to filing an application or taking the Dental Admission Test. It is required that all above prerequisite courses and units be completed by June of the year of intended enrollment.

Minimum College Units: A minimum of 90 semester units, or the equivalent completed or in progress, at the time of application, in an accredited college or university in the United States or Canada is required. A minimum of 30 semester units must be completed at a four-year institution. Selection factors include: grade point average, Dental Admission Test, letters of evaluation, interview, commitment to dentistry, dental/work experience, community service, and interpersonal communication.

For more information about the School of Dental Medicine, please call 702-774-2500 or visit http://dentalschool.unlv.edu.

University of Nevada School of Medicine (UNSOM)
The School of Medicine was established in 1969 as a two-year basic science program. It converted to a full four-year M.D. degree program in 1977 and graduated its first class of physicians trained in Nevada in 1980.

The goal of the school is to graduate students who are knowledgeable, caring, skillful, responsible physicians capable of entering any specialty training program and delivering high-quality health care to the individual, the family, and the community.

Unique features of the UNSOM program include small class size, hands-on clinical experience beginning in the first weeks of medical school, access to top level researchers, and a culture of honor and professionalism.

The School of Medicine is fully accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education.

Curriculum: The first two years of instruction provide opportunities to learn the concepts, skills, and professional values essential to the practice of medicine, including the basic sciences such as anatomy, behavioral sciences, biochemistry, cell biology, microbiology, pathology, pharmacology, and physiology; the foundation skills in patient care necessary for entering the clinical years; and courses in clinical problem solving.

The third and fourth years, the clinical years, are spent in affiliated hospitals, clinics, and ambulatory care centers throughout the state. Students are required to complete the following clinical rotations under the close supervision of our faculty: family medicine, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, and surgery. Students will also take “Clinical Reasoning in Medicine” which is a case-based, interdisciplinary, semester-long course.

Fourth-year medical students may choose from a number of elective courses both in Nevada and out-of-state. Students are required to spend four weeks with a rural Nevada physician in order to become acquainted with the practice of medicine in a small community.

Students apply to postgraduate residency programs through the National Resident Matching Program and are accepted to many of the top programs in the nation.

Student Profile: Students attending the University of Nevada School of Medicine have completed four years of college and, in some cases, have earned graduate degrees. Prior to entering the School of Medicine, students have demonstrated strong academic ability at the undergraduate level and an aptitude for medical science as reflected by their MCAT scores. Some have completed military service or have entered medical school from another field or profession. The average age is 23, and many students are married and have families. Almost all students have extensive health care experience, often as volunteers. The school encourages applicants from all socio-economic, racial, religious and educational backgrounds, and genders. Applications from members of minority groups who meet residency criteria are especially encouraged.

Faculty: The faculty of the University of Nevada School of Medicine is dedicated to the training of caring and competent physicians who will be responsive to their patients and local communities. In addition to their teaching duties, distinguished faculty members also make significant contributions to the advancement of medical science. Researchers at the school have achieved major breakthroughs in cancer biology, in the epidemiology of new or re-emerging infectious diseases, and the discovery and function of ion channels in both heart and gastrointestinal smooth muscle. Ongoing research projects may lead to better diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the digestive tract, AIDS, cancer, and cardiovascular diseases as well as a better understanding of the effects of stress and nutrition on the body. The school operates a kidney and pancreas transplant program and a trauma center at University Medical Center in Las Vegas.

Selection Factors: The School of Medicine seeks well-rounded, academically prepared individuals who have completed a minimum of three years of college. A bachelor’s degree is preferred. Candidates are required to take the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) no later than the fall prior to the year of anticipated entrance. Applicants are evaluated on the basis of:

Nevada residency
Academic performance
Personal interviews
Nature and depth of scholarly activities
Extracurricular community service or related health care activities
Academic letters of reference

Applicants are encouraged to have a broad educational background and to enroll in an in-depth curriculum that will lead to a discipline-oriented major, e.g., biology, English, or psychology. However, no specific major is favored over any other. The School of Medicine does require specific courses as a requisite for admissions:

General chemistry 8 credits
Organic chemistry 8 credits
(Three credits must be upper-division)
12 credits
Physics 8 credits
Behavioral sciences 6 credits

(Three credits must be upper division and deal with the psychological stages of the life cycle, such as human growth and development, adolescence, aging, human sexuality, abnormal psychology, family dynamics or medically oriented sociology.)

Supplementary courses strongly recommended as useful to the study or practice of medicine but not required for admission include: microbiology, genetics, biochemistry, statistics, and mathematics through introductory calculus.

Residence Requirements: First priority for acceptance is given to residents of Nevada. Students are considered Nevada residents if:

  1. Applicants have resided in Nevada for a minimum of 21 months prior to matriculation.
  2. Applicants’ parents are current Nevada residents and the applicant is under 27 years of age.

Non-U.S. citizens must have permanent resident visas and be Nevada residents to be considered. A limited number of out-of-state applications with strong residential ties to Nevada are considered each year. Applicants from Western states without medical schools - Alaska, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming - are also considered. The School of Medicine is a member of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE).

More Information: Students or prospective students with questions regarding the School of Medicine’s programs should contact:

Dean’s Office, Pre-professional Committee
College of Sciences, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Las Vegas, NV 89154-4023

Office for Admissions and Student Affairs
Pennington Medical Education Building/MS 0357
University of Nevada School of Medicine
Reno, NV 89557-0357