Jun 12, 2024  
2016-2017 Graduate Bulletin 
2016-2017 Graduate Bulletin [ARCHIVED BULLETIN]

Chemistry, Ph.D.

Return to the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry 

The Ph.D. in chemistry has two major areas of specialization, the Physical Sciences or the Life Sciences, and is designed for students interested in careers in either industry or university teaching. Each area has specific required core courses. In addition to these core courses, further specialization in various areas of chemistry must be chosen as prescribed below. The required hours for the Ph.D. are a minimum of 72 credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree; a minimum of 42 credit hours beyond the master’s degree; and a minimum of 15 credit hours of CHEM 9981-9 , Doctoral Dissertation. No more than 12 hours of 6000 level courses can be used for the degree.

Core Courses (15 hours)

Select either the life or physical sciences core:

Restrictive Elective Courses

6 credit hours in chosen concentration:

Unrestrictive Elective Courses (6 hours)

Choose two courses from 6000 or 7000 level Chemistry courses or courses offered by the University with prior approval of the graduate committee.

Students may be required to complete prerequisite undergraduate courses and remove deficiencies without graduate credit, resulting in a program of more than 72 credit hours. If approved by the advisory committee (see below), as many as 30 credit hours of course work and research completed in a master’s degree program at an accredited institution may be distributed, as outlined above, among the 72 hours of graduate credit. If approved by the advisory committee, not more than 12 credit hours of approved doctoral-level courses beyond the M.S. may be transferred from another institution. A GPA of at least a 3.0 must be maintained. These requirements are not variable except under special circumstances and with permission of the student’s advisor and the Dean of the Graduate School.

Residence Requirements

At least two consecutive semesters in residence as a full-time student at The University of Tulsa are required.

Advisory Committee

A student in the Ph.D. program will be advised initially by a graduate faculty member recommended by the graduate program advisor and approved by the Dean of the Graduate School. The student should select a general research area and a research advisor or co-advisors for the dissertation by the end of two semesters after enrollment in the program. The advisor or co-advisors, after consultation with the student, recommend the other members of the advisory committee to the Dean of the Graduate School. The advisory committee must have at least four members, three of whom must be from the department. One member must be a faculty member from a department other than Chemistry and Biochemistry or may be a qualified expert in the research area from outside the University. The advisory committee assists with the student’s program of course work, approves the dissertation topic, and administers the final dissertation oral examination.

Qualifying Examinations

By the end of their second year, students will be expected to pass five of fourteen possible qualifying exams. Three exams will be offered per semester, with one exam being offered in the summer, which will demonstrate proficiency in the core courses. Two faculty members, on a rotating basis, will be responsible for each qualifying exam. Faculty will announce the exam topics two weeks prior to the scheduled exam. Exams will be given on a Saturday and students will have three hours to complete the exams. A 70% or higher score qualifies as passing. Qualifying exams will be made available for all faculty members to examine after they are graded by placing a copy in the student’s departmental file. Each faculty member will be responsible for proctoring exams on a rotating basis. Any student who has not passed five exams by the end of their second year will be dismissed from the Ph.D. program. However, students who have been dismissed may be immediately admitted to the appropriate master’s program (Chemistry or Biochemistry) upon petition to, and approval by, the faculty and the Dean of the Graduate School.

Ph.D. Dissertation Proposal Examination

By the end of the second year, students will take the Ph.D. dissertation proposal examination. The examination to be given by the graduate advisory committee consists of writing and orally defending a presentation of their preliminary dissertation research accomplishments and plans.

Admission to Candidacy

A student in the Ph.D. program cannot apply for candidacy until 36 credit hours of required graduate course work have been completed. Admission to candidacy is recommended by the research advisor upon successful completion of the qualifying examination and acceptance of the dissertation research proposal.

Dissertation and Defense

The final requirement for the Ph.D. degree is the completion of a satisfactory written dissertation of his/her research, along with successful presentation and defense of the dissertation to the student’s advisory committee which is open to the public. Dissertations must be presented to the committee at least two weeks prior to the defense date, and public disclosure of the defense date must be given at least one week prior to the defense.