PhD Completion Checklist

To complete the PhD program, one needs:

  • 7 physics courses by the end of the first year
    • Core courses: PHYS 6103, 6105, 6106, 6107, 8901
    • One 3 credit elective course in both the Fall and Spring
    • No more than 1 C grade among these
  • PHYS 8002 (First Year Seminar & Responsible Conduct of Research)
    • Online training course must be completed within 90 days of starting the PhD
    • In-class training on a pass/fail basis
  • CETL 8000 PH1 (Physics GTA Preparation)
    • 1 credit, in-class training on a pass/fail basis for first time GTAs
    • Required for first year PhD students
  • 2 additional graduate level physics courses (6000 level or above)
    • C or better
  • 2 minor courses
    • 6000 level or above (4000 level allowed if prerequisite)
    • May be in the School of Physics, but not within the student’s field of research
    • Courses need not be in the same school, just related
  • Thesis Proposal by the Fall semester of the third year
  • Thesis Proposal Annual Review
    • Thesis exam committee consisting of proposal committee plus 2 other faculty, one from outside Physics
    • Meet with 3-4 members of exam committee yearly
    • If entering into year 7 without a significant break or late change in advisor, TPC will follow up with action plan for thesis
  • Dissertation
    • Written document
    • Public proposal

For any MS on the way to a physics PhD, one needs:

  • 30 credit hours of graduate work (6000 level or above)
    • a 4000 level course can be substituted for one of the courses
    • minimum 2.7 GPA, no more than 3 hours pass/fail
  • Graduate Level Change form must be submitted before Phase I registration of the semester prior to graduation semester
    • check ADD a Master’s Degree Level
    • fill out Current Major
    • fill out Proposed Secondary Major
    • obtain Dr. Ballantyne’s signature
    • turn in to registrar
  • Online Application for Graduation form
    • must be submitted in the semester prior to graduation semester

If the MS is in Physics, the first-year courses plus special problem hours count toward the MS. The degree can be collected at the end of the first summer, so long as the Graduate Level Change form was submitted before Phase I registration of the first Spring and the Online Application for Graduation was filled out before the first summer. 

Students with a MS degree are ineligible to apply for a NSF GRFP.

If the MS is not in Physics, the MS courses can be used toward the minor requirement. Only one course outside of the School of Physics can be taken per semester (without express permission).