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Mathematics Fast Track Program LEARN MORE

Program Requirements

The following benchmarks have to be passed on your way to the Ph.D. degree:

  • Passing of the qualifying exam. This is an exam in Mathematical Analysis and Numerical Linear Algebra. If you are admitted directly into the Ph.D. program, you are expected to take this exam by the end of the first year at the latest.
  • Completing 54 semester hours of courses at the 600 or 700 level. The minimum acceptable grade in each course is a B. The selection of courses must be approved by your supervisory committee and the Joint Program Committee that administers the program. At least 18 hours must be in a major area of concentration, while at least 12 hours have to be in a minor area of study in a subject outside mathematics.  Other course requirements can be found at the catalog link below.
    Doctoral Degree Requirements
  • Passing a language or tool of research exam. The exam content is determined by your Ph.D. committee.
  • Passing the comprehensive exam, consisting of a written and an oral part.
  • Completion of 24 semester hours of research-based work over a minimum of two semesters in candidacy which can be designated as either:
    • A minimum of 24 semester hours in 799 dissertation research OR
    • A minimum of 12 semester hours in 799 dissertation research AND, either during or before candidacy, 12 semester hours in other appropriate research-based coursework which has been approved by the graduate student’s program
  • Preparing a dissertation that must be a genuine contribution to mathematics.
Passing the final examination (thesis defense).


A list of courses is available in the UAB Graduate Catalog.

Time to Complete

Coursework may be finished within two years after the Qualifying Exam. Research should be started while coursework is still underway. Typically, work on the thesis itself takes 12-18 months. Therefore, depending on your background, it can take four to six years to obtain both the M.S. and the Ph.D. degree.