Mathematical Sciences

Doctoral Degree

The doctoral program has three areas of concentration: applied mathematics, discrete mathematics, and statistics. Completion of the doctoral program requires additional advanced course work and passing the comprehensive exams. Students must demonstrate the ability to independently conduct research. Doctoral students work closely with a major advisor and must have their research proposal and dissertation approved by their graduate committee.

Overview of Program Requirements

The PhD degree is offered in the following concentrations: applied mathematics, discrete mathematics, and statistics.

The requirements are listed below (also see Graduate School requirements). It is important to note that this list is not chronological; indeed, not all students will complete the requirements in the same order.

  1. Choose a concentration and complete the core MS course work in that concentration.
  1. Find an advisor and form a PhD dissertation committee. (Note that the committee must include one faculty member from another department.)
  2. Complete at least two 6000-level courses in your concentration.
  3. Complete the "breadth" requirement by taking a sequence of two courses in another concentration.
  1. Pass the qualifying examination. This is a written exam covering advanced undergraduate material; it must be passed by the end of the fourth semester (summer semesters do not count) in the PhD program.
  2. Pass the comprehensive examination. This multi-part exam covers graduate course work; it must be passed by the end of the eighth semester in the PhD program (summer semesters do not count).
  3. Present a dissertation proposal to the satisfaction of your dissertation committee. (Note: Depending on your committee, this proposal may be written or oral. Check with your advisor.)
  4. Write a dissertation detailing the results of a substantial and original research project.
  5. Defend the dissertation with a public presentation and examination by your committee.