The Ph.D. program normally requires four to five years of post-baccalaureate work and generally includes course work, seminars, written and oral exams, and original research. Typically, most course work is finished in the first two years, with cumulative exams in the second and third years. The Ph.D. oral exam that follows is based on an original research proposal developed by the student. Successful students at this point are advanced to candidacy of the Ph.D. degree. Research is a continuing activity throughout all stages. The program is completed by passing a final oral examination and submitting a dissertation on the original research.
At least six graded graduate courses are required. A minimum of 60 semester hours beyond the M.S. degree must be completed. Well-prepared students can skip the M.S. and proceed directly toward the Ph.D. degree. A minimum of 24 credit hours may be given for dissertation research (CHM 850). A minimum grade point average of 3.00 is required.