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Graduate College

Student-Centered Graduate Education

The Graduate College and its campus partners are committed to providing trainees with a rigorous yet individualized learning experience.  Students are encouraged to take ownership of their graduate training and utilize resources intended to ensure success in graduate school and beyond. There are also several opportunities to engage in career and professional development programming, leadership opportunities, campus organizations, community outreach, volunteering, and networking.  

Mentor-Mentee RelationshipsTreatment of Trainees Student ResponsibilitiesTools for Success

Navigating Your Degree

Coursework Research

90 hours, 3.0 GPA

Year 1

  • Required coursework, usually core courses
  • Responsible conduct of research

End of Year 1

  • Develop your plan of study and submit to the Graduate College

Year 2 and after

  • Additional coursework, often discipline-specific and related to your research

General Exam

  • Written and oral components
  • Tests mastery and the ability to synthesize, integrate, generalize, and expand upon all knowledge gained prior to the exam
  • Must be in good academic standing

The cornerstone of the PhD experience

Year 1

  • Identify a potential mentor

Year 2 and Later

  • Join mentor's lab and select committee
  • Annual progress reviews
  • Learn the literature
  • Develop a research question
  • Conduct your dissertation research
  • Present your findings
  • Write your dissertation

Dissertation Defense

  • An oral defense, open to the public
  • The dissertation contributes to existing knowledge, reflects your mastery of the field, and shows your ability to address a significant intellectual problem

Professional Development
Largely self-directed, often extra-curricular. A crucial investment in your interests and career goals.

PhD Requirements & Forms »

Coursework Research

≥30 hours, 3.0 GPA

Year 1

  • Responsible Conduct of Research
  • Select a major advisor

End of Year 1

  • Develop your plan of study and submit to the Graduate College

Year 2

  • Apply for candidacy when all required courses are complete or in progress
  • Requires good academic standing with current enrollment of at least 2 hours

Must be in good academic standing

Option 1: Thesis

  • Select a thesis committee
  • Develop a research question and conduct your research
  • Write your thesis
  • Secure your committee's approval for the defense
  • The defense may be oral, written, or a combination of the two

Option 2: Comprehensive Exam

  • Not available in all programs
  • May be oral, written or a combination of the two
  • May be replaced by a successful PhD General Exam to obtain a terminal Master's

Professional Development
Largely self-directed, often extracurricular. A crucial investment in your interests and career goals

MS Requirements & Forms »

Certificate programs require training in the Responsible Conduct of Research, defined coursework, and additional projects developed with the Graduate Program Director


Completing Your Thesis/Dissertation

The Graduate College works in coordination with individual degree programs across campus to ensure that degree requirements are met.  We are here to support you from start to finish!


OUHSC Academic Calendar

The OUHSC Academic Calendar lists semester start and end dates, as well as deadlines for enrollment, withdrawal, and defense dates for each semester.

Graduate College Bulletin

The Graduate College Bulletin is designed to be the primary source of reference about Graduate College programs and procedures, and it contains links to documents or websites for more detailed information. The Bulletin is frequently updated so please consult this web-based version so you have up-to-date information.

OUHSC Student Handbook

The OUHSC Student Handbook is a compilation of the University major policies and procedures regarding student academic matters. The OUHSC Faculty Handbook is referenced as the original source for policy and procedures when indicated.