Step 8: Dissertation Oral Exam

Submit request for permission to hold and announce Final Examination—must be received by OGS at least 10 working days prior to requested exam date as approved by advisory committee, URSC program coordinator, LAUP department head and OGS.

OGS Final Examination/Dissertation Defense Requirements

The candidate for the doctoral degree must pass a final examination by deadline date announced in the “Office of Graduate Studies Calendar” each semester or summer term. The doctoral student is allowed only one opportunity to take the final examination. No student may be given a final examination unless his or her current official cumulative and degree plan GPRs are 3.000 or better and he or she has been admitted to candidacy. No unabsolved grades of D, F, or U for any course can be listed on the degree plan.To absolve a deficient grade, a student must have repeated the course work and have achieved a grade of C or better. A student must have completed all course work on his or her degree plan with the exception of 691 (Research) or 692 (Professional Study) hours. The student must be registered for all remaining hours; no hours remain to be taken on the degree plan. The Preliminary Examination results must have been submitted to OGS 12 weeks prior to the defense. The research proposal must have been submitted to the OGS 15 working days prior to the date of the final examination/defense. Any changes to the committee must be approved by OGS prior to the approval of the Final Examination. The request for permission to hold and announce the Final Examination must be submitted to OGS a minimum of 10 working days in advance of the scheduled date. Examinations/Defenses that are not completed and reported satisfactory to the Office of Graduate Studies within 10 working days of the scheduled examination/defense date will be recorded as failures.OGS must be notified in writing of any cancellation.

The student’s advisory committee will conduct this examination. The Final Examination is not to be administered until the dissertation or record of study is available in substantially final form to the student’s advisory committee, and all concerned have has adequate time to review the document. Additionally, all English Language Proficiency requirements must be satisfied prior to scheduling the examination. Whereas the Final Examination may cover the broad field of the candidate's training, it is presumed that the major portion of the time will be devoted to the dissertation and closely allied topics. Persons other than members of the graduate faculty may, with mutual consent of the candidate and major professor, be invited to attend the Final Examination for an advanced degree. A positive vote by all members of the graduate advisory committee with at most one dissension is required to pass a student on his or her exam. A department can have a stricter requirement provided there is consistency within all degree programs within a department. Upon completion of the questioning of the candidate, all visitors must excuse themselves from the proceedings.

The advisory committee will submit its recommendation on the appropriate Report of the Final Examination for Doctoral Candidates form to OGS regarding acceptability of the candidate for the doctoral degree. A student must be registered in the University in the semester or summer term in which the final examination is taken.