2018-2019 Graduate Bulletin


Credit Requirements

The approved range of graduate credit for the doctoral degree is 90-142 quarter credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree. However, some colleges, schools and departments may have different requirements; consult the specific graduate program for details.

Students enrolled in a graduate program should not take courses towards another degree program unless the student has been accepted into the second program, and no more than 15 quarter hours of credit may be earned at the University of Denver and applied towards a degree program before acceptance into that degree program. Advanced degrees are not awarded automatically on completion of the required number of courses or hours of credit.

Residency Requirements

Enrollment in at least six quarters (four semesters), minimally 45 credit hours, including at least two consecutive quarters (one semester) of full-time attendance is required for graduation.


Responsibility for securing approval of a proposed program of study rests with the student. Consultation with the advisor at regular intervals is essential to satisfactory planning and progress toward a degree. The requirements outlined in the college, school, or departmental summaries serve as a guide to program planning and are subject to specific determination in consultation with program advisors, and the student must assume full responsibility for meeting basic requirements and deadlines, as well as the specific requirements outlined by the program advisor.

Research Tool Requirements

Candidates may be required to demonstrate proficiency in the required tools for research and advanced study.

Where required, tool requirements are determined by the candidate’s advisor and committee, and may include one or more languages, statistical methods, laboratory or other research skills. Consult the college, school or department for requirement details.

Advancement to Preliminary Candidacy

The minimum requirements for advancement to preliminary candidacy include formulation and approval of candidate’s general plan of study, achievement of regular status, a minimum grade point average of 3.0 in all work completed to that point, posting of any transfer credit to the candidate’s record and planning of tool requirements.

During or immediately after the first full quarter of doctoral study (normally the first post-Master’s quarter), students should arrange with their college, school, or department for an evaluation of status so they may be recommended for advancement to preliminary candidacy.

Note: Advancement to preliminary candidacy may also require satisfactory completion of entrance qualifying examination, if required by the program. Consult the college, school or department for more details.

Comprehensive/Competency Examination

This examination is either a written or an oral test designed to evaluate the student’s work in the major and related fields. The examination is scheduled at least three quarters (two semesters) prior to graduation. A candidate who fails one or all parts of the examination may petition the college, school or department for re-examination. If granted, a re-examination may not be scheduled until the following quarter.

It is generally expected that students will complete the comprehensive exam prior to defending the dissertation proposal. Students should consult with their unit regarding the timing of the comprehensive exams and the proposal defense.

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