Graduate Program

The department offers two graduate programs:

The Master of Science degree requires 30 hours beyond the bachelor's degree, which usually is accomplished by taking seven graduate courses and preparing a written thesis.There is also a non-thesis master’s degree option in which the student completes 9 courses (27 of the 30 hours) and completes a smaller-scope research report, which is presented publicly. Although students conducting research leading to a thesis receive preferential consideration for Departmental financial support, those interested in the non-thesis option may also be supported if funds are available.

The Doctoral degree requires 72 hours beyond a bachelor's degree, including 24 hours credit for a master's degree. Doctoral candidates must pass a qualifying exam during their first year in residence to assess their general background so that a meaningful program can be constructed. A typical doctoral program involves courses within and outside the department, and researching the dissertation topic prior to taking the comprehensive examination by the end of the second year. The results of the dissertation research are presented to the faculty and graduate students when the student has completed the project.

Financial Support:  Graduate students are typically supported by either Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTA) or Graduate Research Assistantship (GRA).  GRA funding is linked to research funding of individual faculty members, and applicants are encouraged to inquire about potential GRA support with relevant faculty.

Application Deadline:  Applications must be complete by January 31 in order to insure consideration for departmental support during the fall academic semester.  Applications received after January 31 will still be considered if funding is available.  Applications for spring semester can be considered, but applicants should inquire about availability of funding before applying.  Applications received between May 1 and August 15 (i.e., during the summer break) will not typically be evaluated until the start of the fall semester. 


Please direct all inquiries to the Director of Graduate Studies.