PhD in Computer Science Program Milestones

There are four milestones in the PhD in Computer Science program:

Additional Notes

Registration Requirements

Please refer to the Graduate College's Graduate Student Handbook for the most up-to-date registration requirements. University policy requires that post-master’s students register for at least 3 credits in the term in which they take their Candidacy Exam. Those who successfully pass their Candidacy Exam and become PhD candidates must register for at least 1 credit for at least 3 terms each academic year until they complete their degrees (at this point, students usually register for research or dissertation credits).

If PhD candidates are not working on campus, taking courses, or otherwise using campus facilities during the summer, they do not need to register for summer term.

Annual Review

All doctoral students are evaluated by the department faculty at the conclusion of the spring term. Grades, research work, teaching efforts and progression to/achievement of milestones are discussed. Students who are underperforming will be given an unsatisfactory review and require an additional evaluation in 6 months. After earning two or more unsatisfactory reviews, the student may be dismissed from the program.

Deadlines and Time Limits

University policy provides that students who enter graduate study at the master’s or post-baccalaureate level must complete their studies for the their graduate degrees within seven years after initial graduate registration. Those who enter at the post-master’s level are permitted five years after initial registration to complete the PhD degree.

The College imposes two additional time limitations on PhD in Computer Science students after they pass the Qualifying Exam. They must advance to candidacy by taking both Written and Oral Examinations no later than one year after passing the Qualifying Exam and passing it no later than one and a half years after passing the Qualifying Exam. Secondly, the Thesis Proposal must be completed within two years after becoming a PhD Candidate. Of course, a student may proceed more rapidly than the deadlines require.

In unusual circumstances, a student who finds that these time requirements are inadequate due to special circumstances must discuss this with his or her research advisor. Together they may request an extension to any of these time limits. A revised plan of study along with a timeline for completion must accompany the request. All requests must be approved by the your graduate advisor and exceptions to University requirements must by approved by the Graduate College.

As described in Drexel Provost's official policy on Statute of Limitations on Earned Course Credit, the time limit is ten years. This means that Drexel courses taken more than ten years ago cannot be counted towards satisfying degree requirements.