University of Vermont

2013-2014 Catalogue

Computer Science (Doctor of Philosophy)


The interdisciplinary Ph.D. program in computer science offers study in both traditional and cross-disciplinary areas in computing. Please see our departmental website Link out of catalogue site.for current research interests of our faculty.

General Requirements

Specific Requirements

Requirements for Admission to Graduate Studies for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy

A bachelor's degree and satisfactory scores on the Graduate Record Examination general section are required of all applicants. Applicants will be evaluated based on their potential for excellence in research, as judged from their academic background, test scores, relevant experience and letters of recommendation. Students should also demonstrate that they have taken the following courses or have equivalent knowledge: two courses that treat systematic program development in a high level language (e.g., CS 021 and CS 110), one course in computer system organization (e.g., CS 121), one course in data structures (e.g., CS 124), one course in computability and complexity (e.g., CS 125), two courses in differential and integral calculus (e.g., MATH 021, MATH 022), one course in linear algebra (MATH 124 or equivalent), and one course in probability and statistics (e.g., STAT 153 or CS 128). Applicants whose native language is not English or who have not received their education in English must present satisfactory results from the TOEFL examination.

Requirements for Advancement to Candidacy for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy

Before advancing to candidacy, the student must:

  • Demonstrate satisfactory performance in a schedule of courses of at least fifteen credits of graduate course work at UVM, as approved by the student's studies committee
  • Pass a comprehensive exam in areas approved by the student's studies committee, including a written component
  • Successfully propose a thesis topic in a public presentation
  • Pass an oral exam before the student's studies committee
Minimum Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy

A minimum of seventy-five credits of graduate study must be approved by the studies committee and successfully completed. All students must take a minimum of thirty credits of research and fifteen credits (normally five courses) of UVM course work (only courses with grades of B- or above are counted towards this minimum requirement and students with two grades below B are eligible for dismissal). While a master’s degree is not required prior to entering our doctoral program, we expect a typical student to complete 30-40 credits of relevant course work beyond their undergraduate degree.

The student must describe the completed research in a written dissertation and defend the research in a public presentation of the results.

Beyond research and course work, the student must gain appropriate experience, to the satisfaction of their studies committee, in teaching, programming, and communicating technical ideas, both orally and in writing.