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General Policies and Guidelines

Excerpts from the Policies and Guidelines (fall,2004) follow. For a complete description and interpretation of any statement, please contact the Program Office.


Summary of Requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Sciences

  • Complete core and advanced courses with a minimum grade point average of 3.0.
  • Pass a preliminary examination.
  • Prepare, present and defend a written dissertation proposal.
  • Accumulate a minimum of 100 didactic, laboratory and research semester hours in the program.
  • Conduct research on an acceptable original problem, submit an approved written dissertation and make a successful public defense of the dissertation.
  • Be certified by the Program Director as having completed all requirements for the degree, including completion of an acceptable dissertation.
  • Meet residency requirements and be registered in the quarter in which the defense is completed.
  • Present one copy of the approved dissertation to the Program office and one to the Graduate School via OhioLink.
  • Fulfill all requirements within nine years of entrance into the Program.


Time Limit
Graduate credit applied toward the doctoral degree is valid for only nine years from the date the student enters the Program.

Program requirements are as follows:

  • by the end of year 1, dissertation director choice
  • by the end of year 2, advanced courses, supervisory committee formation, preliminary examination and teaching requirement
  • by the end of year 3, written dissertation proposal,
  • by the end of year 5, defense and submission of dissertation
  • twice yearly, periodic supervisory committee meeting

If the above guides are followed, a student can complete the degree requirements within five years of matriculation.

Residence Requirements

A minimum of 76 credit hours towards the degree must be completed at Wright State University. A doctoral student must be enrolled full time or for a minimum of three semesters after passing the preliminary examination.

Grading Standards

Students must maintain at least a 3.0 graduate point average in all graduate work that is assigned letter grades. The grade of M (satisfactory progress) is given for both non-dissertation and dissertation research until the dissertation is accepted. These will then convert to a pass (P) grade. A grade of unsatisfactory (U) or fail (F) in non-dissertation or dissertation research hours will be documented in a detailed memo from the student’s mentor. Consequences for further unsatisfactory work will be dismissal from the Program. Unsatisfactory work in either 10 credit hours of, or two, lab rotations will also subject the student to dismissal. Special topics courses are graded only on a pass/fail basis.

Waiver of Program Requirements
Students may request to be exempt from part of the core curriculum. Students may also request waiver of credit for up to 12 hours of advanced course credit provided the grade is a B or better, the course was taken within four years of the request, the course relates to the chosen area of concentration and the student’s mentor is in agreement with the request. Requests for waivers should be made to the Program office where the Director will make the final decision. If necessary, the director may seek a recommendation from the Program Curriculum Committee.

Financial Assistance
Financial support in the form of a monthly stipend and remission of semester tuition fees is available to students on a competitive basis and may be renewed for up to five years with satisfactory progress.

Work Outside the Program

No student receiving financial support from the Program may hold employment outside the Program without approval from the Program Director. Approval may be granted only on a case-by-case basis.

Dissertation Director
Students should select a dissertation director by the end of the first year of study. The director must be a full member of the BMS Program faculty and be approved by the Program Director and the Graduate School.

Supervisory Committee

The dissertation director and student will select three BMS Program faculty to serve on the committee – no more than three of these four (including the dissertation director) may be from the department of the dissertation director. This committee list is submitted to the Program Office where the Program Director will assign a BMS representative to the committee.
The committee advises and supports the student in design, implementation and interpretation of an appropriate biomedical research project. The committee and student should meet at least twice a year. For the preliminary examination, proposal, permission to write and dissertation defense meeting, ALL committee members must be present.

Timetable for Graduation

Degrees are awarded three times a year in December, April and August. Commencement ceremonies are held only twice (Fall and Spring). Filing periods for degree applications are posted on the Graduate School's website – check deadline dates early. The BMS Program does not permit participation in the commencement ceremony unless the defense has been completed prior to finals week before the ceremony. Students must be registered the semester the degree is conferred. The Program office requires one printed copy of the dissertation (with the completed signature sheet, unbound). The Graduate School requires that the dissertation be submitted online for uploading to OhioLink not later than 30 days after the last day of the semester of graduation – there are no exceptions.

Biomedical Sciences Faculty Membership

The BMS Program faculty are a subset of the Graduate School Faculty. BMS faculty membership may be approved by the Academic Policies Committee at either the Full or the Associate level. Privileges and responsibilities at each level differ. Those interested in membership should contact the Program Office for the appropriate paperwork and guidance.


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