Exam Structure, Research Proposal, Candidacy and Time Limitation
The qualifying exam will consist of written examinations in Mathematics and in Computer Science and an appropriate exam in the area of application. A student may take each of these examinations more than twice only with the permission of the Dean of the Graduate School. The qualifying exam in the area of application may consist of the master's degree in that area. Within 1 year of passing the qualifying exam, a student is normally expected to pass a comprehensive exam in his/her area of specialization (which may be Mathematics, Computer Science, the area of application, or some other area included in this program). The comprehensive exam will include a lecture and followed by a question/answer period on the student's proposed dissertation topic that exhibits a clear demonstration of an understanding of the principles and methods involved in his proposed area of specialization. The student must submit a research proposal, signed by the committee members, to the Steering Committee within two months of the comprehensive exam, preferably before this exam. A student may take the comprehensive exam before the qualifying exam.
After the student has successfully passed both the qualifying exams and comprehensive exam, the student will be admitted to candidacy. The student must complete the dissertation and pass the dissertation defense exam within six years after being admitted to candidacy. The student's Doctoral Committee administered the dissertation defense exam. It will, in most cases, consist of an open public defense of the results of the dissertation. This final exam must be completed successfully at least two weeks prior to the date the degree is expected to be received.
Those serving on the Doctoral Committee must recommend, with at most one dissent, that the student has satisfactorily passed the dissertation defense exam.