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The Ph.D. Program Structure

The graduate curriculum in Computer Science in the CS department is structured into four primary focus areas:

  • Computing Foundations
  • Computer and Network Systems
  • Information and Intelligent Systems
  • Medical Image Computing

This structure is designed to help students choose the courses they need to take to prepare for research in their area of choice. Courses associated with each area can be found  here.

Doctoral candidates are required to complete a total of 72 hours of graduate work for credit, of which a minimum of 36 hours in formal course work.  Formal coursework may include at most 6 hours of independent study. The remainder of the 72 hours, above the program requirements in formal course hours, should be in dissertation research hours. Some transfer credit from previous graduate studies may be applied toward the 72 hours if applicable. General requirements regarding Admission to Candidacy, Residence, the Qualifying Examination, and the Dissertation are set by the Graduate School and are described in the graduate catalog ( Additional information can be found  here, as well.


Outline of Coursework Requirements

    1. 72.0 credit hours total
      1. Minimum of 36.0 hours in formal coursework
          1. Formal coursework may include at most 6.0 hours of independent study. 
          2. The distribution of the formal coursework must contain at least one advanced graduate course (6000 +) in each of  three primary research areas  -one of which must be Computing Foundations. 
          3. Please review the Ph.D.  Coursework Audit Form  to help verify that you have satisfied or will satisfy all course distribution requirements.
      2. The remainder of the 72.0 hours, above the program requirements of a minimum of 36.0 hours in formal course work, should be in dissertation research hours.
    2. 3.5+ GPA expected for program; 3.0 GPA required for graduation
    3. Additional requirements are outlined  here.