Most of the courses that PhD students will take will be geared toward preparing the student for the Breadth exams and for whatever other preparation the advisor deems necessary. Specific requirements for courses follow.
 
Students must take at least 60 credits in the CDM 420 - CDM 699 range, including at least 12 credits of CSC 699: Research (or equivalent as approved by advisor).  Non-CDM courses may be substituted with permission of the advisor.
 
Students must take CSC 426: Research Methods and Practice in Computing in their first two years.  Students must take at least two quarters (4 credits) of CSC 500: Research Colloquium in their first two years.
 
Students who do not have a master’s degree are considered “conditionally admitted” students. These students must complete an additional 52 credits (typically 13 courses) of graduate coursework, including 36 credits (9 courses) of CDM courses in the range of 420 - 598. No courses under CSC 420 shall count for PhD degree. Non-CDM courses may be substituted with permission of the advisor.
 
Students must maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or better to remain in good standing in the program. Any course grade below B- is unsatisfactory and will not be counted towards degree requirements.
 
Students must remain continuously enrolled in CSC 701 or CSC 702 (0 credits) if they are not taking any other courses.
 

Exams

Students must pass two Breadth Exams.  If an exam is unsuccessful, the student is required to retake the Breadth Exam in that same area.  Students may attempt a Breadth Exam twice.  If a student fails a Breadth Exam twice, he or she will be dismissed from the program.
 
Students must complete a Depth examination in their chosen area of research. The Depth Exam must be completed before the Proposal Defense.

The Dissertation

After the exams have been passed, the student must propose a significant original research project and successfully defend that proposal to the student’s Dissertation Committee.  Once the research has been completed, the student must hold a public defense to demonstrate to the Dissertation Committee that the work has been completed satisfactorily.

Time limits

Full-time Students

  • Year 1 (a) Pass at least 1 breadth exam or (b) show concrete evidence of initial research, such as a literature review, technical report, poster presentation at a conference, etc.
  • Year 2 (a) Pass both breadth exams and (b) show evidence of continuing research, such as a publication or conference presentation.
  • Years 3 to 5 Continue to demonstrate progress in research; submit additional publication(s) to reputable journals or conferences; and pass Proposal Defense.
  • No less than six months and no more than three years between Proposal Defense and the Dissertation Defense.
Conditionally admitted students will have an extra year to achieve these milestones.
 

Part-time Students

  • No more than three years between enrollment in the doctoral program and completion of Breadth Examinations.
  • No more than five years between completion of Breadth Examinations and Proposal Defense.
  • No less than eight months and no more than five years between Proposal Defense and the Dissertation Defense.