Preliminary Examination

The purpose of the preliminary examination is to ascertain the breadth and depth of the student’s preparation and to appraise readiness to undertake significant original investigation.

  • At the discretion of the program, the preliminary examination may be oral, written, or both, and may consist of a series of examinations.
  • The committee is appointed by the Graduate Program Director. 
  • The preliminary examining committee must include at least two faculty members from the program and may include one or more members from outside the University or program. 
  • Results of the preliminary examination will be communicated to the student as soon as possible and to the Graduate School within one week of the completion of the examination.
  • A repetition of the preliminary examination, upon failure, may be scheduled at the discretion of the program. The dean of the Graduate School must approve a second repeat.