Second Year and Beyond
General Electives: The general electives provide students the flexibility to have formal coursework fit individual needs. The general electives (4 credit total) are usually taken during the second year.
Thesis Advisory Committee meetings: Students are required to hold a committee meeting once each semester during the fall and spring of their second year and at least annually beyond the second year.
Instruction in Scientific Presentation: Students must take two semesters of BCHM 690, a course providing formal instruction in preparing and delivering scientific presentations. Scientific meetings and lab presentations also provide students experience delivering talks.
Preliminary Examination: The Preliminary Examination is given in the fall semester of the third year of study if the core courses were taken during the first year. Prior to taking the examination, the student must have met twice with their Thesis Advisory Committee: once each semester during the fall and spring of the second year. At the spring meeting, the Thesis Advisory Committee will determine whether the student is eligible to take the Preliminary Examination.
Complete Research: Research conducted under the guidance of an advisor begins during the summer of the first year. Evidence of creative research ability is required to fulfill the Ph.D. requirements and research activities become the focus of graduate studies from the second year forward.
Teaching Experience: Students are required to serve as a half-time teaching assistant for a minimum of one semester.
Publication of Research Results: Research should address original and important scientific problems that will yield results suitable for publication. Students are required to be the major author on a minimum of one paper that has been submitted or published in a reputable journal. The preparation of manuscript(s) is done under the supervision of the advisor and is an excellent opportunity to develop and refine scientific writing skills. Publications are an important measure of scientific achievement and individual potential as a researcher.
Prepare Thesis: Students must write a thesis, which will describe and document the results of their research. The thesis is reviewed by the major professor and Thesis Advisory Committee in preparation for the final exam.
Final Examination and Thesis Defense: Upon completion of the thesis, students present a seminar to the department describing their research. Following the presentation, students meet with their Thesis Advisory Committee for an oral exam about their research and related topics. The granting of the Ph.D. degree is approved by the Thesis Advisory Committee.
For more information, see Graduate Course Requirements.