The PhD degree is intended for students seeking a research or academic career. Comprehensive exams (both oral and written) are required in the doctoral program.
For a PhD, the minimum number of credits required is 30 credits with a master’s degree in a related field; 60 credits are required otherwise. A minimum of 12 dissertation credits is required for a post-master’s doctorate and a minimum of 18 for a non-master’s doctorate. The semesters during which a student registers for dissertation credit should correspond as closely as possible to the semesters in which the dissertation work is done and faculty supervision is provided. Doctoral students must meet an academic residency requirement which ensures that the doctoral student experience includes at least one period of concentrated attention to study, research, and interaction with faculty. This period of immersion in the culture of students’ departments is an important part of their preparation for future work in academic communities. The residency requirement for doctoral studies consists of the following: At least 33 USU semester credits from an approved Program of Study are required for doctoral students. The balance of credits may be from USU or from other institutions, subject to transfer limits and the approval of the student’s supervisory committee.
With committee approval, graduate credits may be transferred from accredited graduate schools, provided the minimum residency requirement (including thesis and dissertation credit) at USU is met. Only 12 semester credits may be transferred into a graduate program at USU. Transfer credit, which must not have been used for any other degree, will be shown on official USU transcripts at completion of the degree.