The purpose of the qualifying candidacy examination is to determine whether the applicant possesses the attributes of a doctoral candidate. Typically, the qualifying examination is held twice a year, on the second Friday in November and on the second Friday in April. The dates and times will be announced by the department. Students must take the qualifying exam during the first two years and pass the examination by the third year. A student may attempt the qualifying candidacy exam a maximum of two times. If a student is not successful in passing the exam in two attempts he/she will be dismissed from the program. Students may not take this exam unless they have a minimum GPA of 3.25 in their course work.
A student will take the comprehensive examination after passing the qualifying exam. The examination covers the five Knowledge Areas; students choose any three of the five areas for their comprehensive exam. Typically, the comprehensive examination is held twice a year, in October and March. The dates and times will be announced by the department. Students can be given two attempts to pass the comprehensive exam. A student must pass within the first five years in the program. A student who has not passed the comprehensive exam in the second attempt will be dismissed from the program. Students may not take this exam unless they have a minimum GPA of 3.25 in the doctoral course work.