The minimum overall course requirements for the doctorate program are nine courses. Full-time course work will extend for 12 months, starting in July. Students must enroll in a minimum of two courses in each of the first three terms: summer, fall, and spring.
The majority of course requirements are to be completed by the end of the first year of study. Elective courses are often taken in the second year, with the expectation that they be completed by the end of the second year. Electives are chosen in consultation with the student's advisor. The Director of Graduate Studies provides approval of the course selections by the students.
Students are required to hold their first qualifying committee meeting by January 31 of the first year at which time the preliminary prospectus is presented, reading topics for the directed reading course (IMED 635) are assigned, and an estimated timeline is set for the comprehensive qualifying examination.
To be eligible to take the comprehensive qualifying examination, students must achieve the grade of Honors in two courses (one course if a full-year course), have a minimum grade average of High Pass, and have completed a minimum of six courses.
When requirements are met (typically by December 31 of the second year), students submit their thesis prospectus and undertake the comprehensive qualifying examination. In order to be admitted to candidacy, students must pass both the written and oral examinations and submit a thesis prospectus which has been approved by their qualifying committee. The remaining degree requirements include completion of dissertation project, the writing of the dissertation, and its oral defense.
Students admitted to candidacy will then continue their dissertation research. Oversight during this period will be provided by the student's thesis committee. Thesis committee meetings are required at 6-month intervals throughout the duration of training. The remaining degree requirements include completion of the dissertation project, writing of the dissertation, and its oral defense.