Professional Development

BCH2024H – Focused Topics In Biochemistry

This is a graduate level course focused on developing the academic and professional skills required to succeed during and beyond graduate education in basic biomedical sciences such as biochemistry.

Interactive lectures will include classroom discussions regarding the practical aspects of succeeding in graduate school, mentoring, leadership, finding successful collaborations, developing strong written and oral communication skills, further training as a postdoctoral fellow, effective networking, integrating family commitments, career transitions, cvs and resumés, career options in and out of academia, best methods of searching for and landing the job, creating the career pathway, maintaining career development and other core competency skills.

Students will develop communication skills through writing assignments and oral presentations related to their research. Classes will include interactive assignments or an interactive panel discussion with guest speakers from various industries and careers such as those from Academia, Law, Research Ethics, Management Consulting, Science Writing, Industry, Innovation, Government, and Education.

Read more about the Professional Development initiatives at the department.

All students registered for GPD should start reading “Success After Graduate School” by Nana Lee and Rienhart Reithmeier, bring in a 500-700 word research summary written for the general audience, complete an updated IDP with SMART goals, a worldview and workview. The latter two documents may be obtained by contacting Dr. Nana Lee.

This course is part of a larger initiative by the department – read more about the Professional Development Program and discover career resources available to graduate students.

To register for this course please email Non-Biochemistry Students please refer to Prerequisites for enrollment.

Biochemistry Graduate students: This module is available for PhDs only. GPD cannot be used towards M.Sc. program course credits.

Over subscribed classes will follow priority enrollment as per Departmental guidelines.

Course Next Offered

Winter Semester 2020

Course Time and Location

MSB 5231
Winter 2020 Session
Every other Wednesdays 10 am – 12 pm noon

Jan 29
Feb 12, 26
March 11, 25

BCH2024 GPD has been certified as a green course by the University of Toronto Sustainability Office for the 2017-2018 academic year.


PhD students only. Biochemistry students are given registration priority until Aug 1 and Dec 1 before each semester. Registration is then open to all other U of Toronto graduate students on Aug 2 and Dec 2. For non-Biochemistry students interested in taking this course, please submit a summary of less than 500 words of 1) your career objectives, 2) what your home department offers with regards to GPD, and 3) how you think this course will help you with your professional development goals. Send to by August 1 and December 1 before each semester with full name and year of studies.

Enrollment Limit

Yes — 16


Senior PhD students may audit with special permission by the Instructor.

Method of Student Evaluation

Written Assignments (45%)
Oral Presentations (30%)
Class Participation (25%)

Recommended Reading

“Success During and After Graduate School” by Nana Lee and Reinhart Reithmeier, 2016.


Nana (Hyung-Ran) Lee

Nana (Hyung-Ran) Lee

Room 5233
Medical Sciences Building
1 King's College Circle


Last Updated 10 June 2019