Policy 9: Admission to Candidacy

When the student has passed the comprehensive examination, has satisfied any program requirements for foreign language proficiency or special tool of research, and has presented to the graduate study committee an acceptable proposal for research or special study, the committee will recommend to the Graduate School Dean that the student be admitted to candidacy. A student must be in good academic standing to be admitted to candidacy. Admission to candidacy must take place at least two regular terms before the expected completion of the doctoral program.

Admission to candidacy is an important step forward in the student's pursuit of the doctorate. By this step, the graduate committee indicates its confidence that the student is capable of completing the proposed research project and the doctoral program. Since the committee meeting at which candidacy is discussed is so important, it should be scheduled through the Graduate School to allow the dean to attend.

Policy 10: Application for Degree

Each candidate for a doctoral degree must signify the intention to complete the requirements by a particular graduation date by submitting a completed Application for Degree Form. Because this form is used to check requirements, order the diploma, and enter the student on the commencement program, it must be received in the Graduate School Records Office no later than 3 weeks into the expected semester of graduation. Students must be registered for at least 3 semester hours of graduate work in the semester they plan to graduate.

Policy 11: Dissertation

The results of the candidate's individual inquiry must be presented in a written dissertation comprising a genuine contribution to knowledge in the particular academic field. The document should also demonstrate the candidate's acquaintance with the literature of the field and the proper selection and execution of research methodology.

Signatures of committee members and program directors on approval forms indicate their assurance that they have examined the document and have found that it is of professional quality, technical correctness, and professional competency, and that the document conforms to acceptable standards of scholarly presentation. The Graduate School is responsible for ensuring that the final version of the dissertation meets the physical standards required of a permanent, published document and for adherence to the requirements statedin the UAB Format Manual (availbe online at http://www.uab.edu/graduate/theses_dissertation/FormatManual.pdf).

No later than 2 weeks (10 business days) following the public defense, the completed, final version of the committee-approved dissertation, as a single PDF, must be submitted for final review. There is a $65 charge, paid online at the time of submission. This fee covers perpetual archiving and maintenance of the dissertation in the ProQuest/UMI database. Also subnitted online are the UAB Publication Agreement and the Survey of Earned Doctorates. One copy of the signed approval form is submitted to the Graduate School office. additional information concerning completing graduation requirements and the dissertaiton submission and publication process is available online at http://main.uab.edu/Sites/gradschool/students/current/theses/.

Policy 12: Final Examination

The final examination should take the form of a presentation and defense of the dissertation, followed by an examination of the candidate's comprehensive knowledge of the field. This examination must be scheduled through the Graduate School to allow attendance of the dean. The meeting must be open to all interested parties, should be publicized on the UAB campus and must take place at least 30 days before the expected date of graduation. Candidates must be registered for at least three semester hours of graduate work during the term in which the final examination is taken.

If in the opinion of more than one member of the dissertation committee, the student has failed the final, oral examination, there is no consensus to pass. The chair of the committee shall advise the student that the dissertation fails to meet the requirements of the Graduate School. The chair shall notify the student in writing about the reason(s) for failure. If the students resubmits or submits a new dissertation for consideration by the Graduate School at least two members of the new examining committee shall be drawn from the original committee. If the modified or new dissertation fails to meet the requirements of the Graduate School, the student shall be dismissed from the Graduate School.

Students who fail to submit a completed dissertation within one quarter following the final examination will be charged a degree completion fee each quarter. After two quarters students are required to schedule another meeting of the supervisory committee. Exceptions to the policy must be approved in advance of the deadline by the program director or graduate dean.

Policy 13: Recommendation for Degree

The candidate will be recommended for the doctoral degree to the Graduate School Dean by the graduate study committee and the graduate program director. This recommendation must be received no later than 20 days before the end of the term in which the candidate is expected to complete all degree requirements. Candidates must be in good academic standing to graduate, with no temporary grades (I or N) for courses required for degree on their transcripts.

Policy 14: Award of Degree

Upon approval by the Graduate School Dean and payment of any outstanding financial obligations to the university, the student will receive the degree from the president of the university.