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Chemistry Graduate Program

Prospective Students

Milestones towards PhD

1. Completing coursework – The student’s course of study must be approved by the student’s advisory committee and must fulfill the general degree requirements for their respective advanced degree. A minimum of 52 credit* hours is required. These hours are distributed as follows:

500-level chemistry courses           21 cr hrs with a letter grade*

CHEM 529, 530 (Seminar)                2 cr hrs

COMM 575 (Proposal Writing I)     3  cr hrs

CHEM  555 (Proposal Writing II)    2 cr hrs

CHEM 595 (Dissertation)                 24 cr hrs

Students may substitute upto 6 credit hours of courses at the 300-level and above from other departments. Additional 500-level courses from other departments may be used in place of 500-level chemistry courses, upon approval of student’s advisory committee.

* - students with prior MS are required to complete all the above requirements, except those students only require 9 cr hrs of 500-level with a letter. 3 of these 9 cr hrs could be replaced by 300-level or above from other departments. 

2. Entrance examinations – All incoming students must take entrance examinations before the beginning of the semester. Entrance examinations will be based on American Chemical Society’s standard tests. All students must take 5 tests in following subject areas; Analytical Chemistry, Biochemistry, Inorganic Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, and Physical Chemistry. If deficiencies are determined, appropriate remedial undergraduate coursework will be required. Remedial coursework does not count toward degree requirements.

3. Graduate committee – A graduate committee must be established before the end of the 2nd semester of the program. In addition to student’s thesis advisor, committee must consist minimum of 3 faculty from the chemistry department and 1 non-chemistry faculty.

4. Candidacy oral exam (Dissertation proposal) - The purpose of the candidacy examination is to show that preliminary work underway on a dissertation subject and to evaluate the student’s ability to complete dissertation research. The exam is taken before the end of fifth semester (excluding summer semesters). Passing the candidacy exam is one of several steps that must be completed prior to Admission to Candidacy.  Graduate committees will require additional coursework and/or other remediation for deficiencies discovered during the candidacy exam. Any such remediation will be added to the student’s graduate file in the graduate office.

5. Admission to candidacy - A doctoral student may apply for candidacy upon completion of a minimum of one year of graduate study at NMT. A student qualifies for admission to candidacy by:

a) Averaging B or better in coursework taken;

b) Passing the candidacy examination

6. PhD dissertation defense - The doctoral dissertation demonstrates the candidate’s capacity for independent research. The student may register for dissertation hours only after successfully advancing to candidacy. A minimum of 24 credit hours distributed over one or more years must be devoted to the dissertation after candidacy has been achieved. The dissertation must be defended before the NMT faculty under the supervision of the student’s advisory committee. Before the degree is approved and granted, at least one paper on the subject matter of the dissertation must be submitted to a recognized journal acceptable to the doctoral committee of the student. Generally, significantly more research publication is expected.