Ph.D. in Applied Geology | Department of Geology | Kent State University

Ph.D. in Applied Geology

Field Camp in the Black Hills, SDSteps toward completion of the Ph.D. in the Applied Geology program:

  • Requirements for Graduation
  • Ph.D. Minors
  • Important Dates
  • Forms
  • Frequently Asked Questions

The Graduate Coordinator is the advisor of record until an appropriate advisor has been approved by the Graduate Studies Committee, and the dissertation proposal has been completed and filed.

Information on this page is summarized from the Geology Graduate Student Handbook (Word). Printed copies are available upon request from the Department of Geology office, 221 McGilvrey Hall. 

Also see the Guide to Graduate Education at Kent State University for a summary of the policies and procedures for graduate education.

Requirements for Graduation

See University Catalog for details - revised June 2018

Important Dates

There are several deadlines that must be met in order to graduate in a timely fashion:

  • Applying for graduation
  • Completing the thesis/dissertation defense
  • Presentation of thesis/dissertation to the Office of Graduate Affairs, College of Arts & Sciences

If the student applies for graduation in one term and is delayed in finishing the work, it is necessary to file a re-application in the Office of Graduate Affairs, in the term in which graduation is anticipated. The re-application must be in the Office of Graduate Affairs by the deadline for application for graduation. Although reminders from the Graduate Coordinator and the Office of Graduate Affairs will be sent out, the Graduate Catalogue clearly stipulates that it is the responsibility of the student to meet the deadlines.

It is expected that the doctoral degree students entering Kent State with a master's degree will complete the degree in no more than nine years. Students possessing a master's degree will pass the candidacy examination within four calendar years of the first graduate registration at Kent State University. A doctoral candidate is expected to satisfactorily complete the dissertation and pass the final oral examination within five calendar years after having passed the candidacy examination.

Students must be continuously enrolled, including one summer term each year, prior to the completion of their degree. Please consult the Graduate Catalog for your enrollment term or the Department office for more information.

  • Departmental Scholarship Applications
    Due by April 15
  • Application to Graduate
    Due by 4:00 pm Friday of the first week of classes for the semester in which you wish to graduate
  • Dissertation Defense Deadline
    Typically about 5 weeks before commencement (look for the posted deadlines each semester)
  • Dissertation Submission Deadline
    Typically about 3 weeks before commencement (look for the posted deadlines each semester)

Forms

Frequently Asked Questions

What specific course work must be taken to satisfy the Ph.D. requirements?

Students must take at least 3 courses in their minor area. Beyond this the only specific requirement that must be completed prior to graduation is 30 hours of Dissertation I (80199) and 60 hours past the M.S. or 90 hours past the B.S. degree. Specific coursework necessary to prepare the candidate for the dissertation work will be selected on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the faculty advisor and the members of the examination committee. Keep in mind that in addition to the formal courses offered in the department you have the following options available to help you develop the skills you need:

  1. You can take courses at the University of Akron, Cleveland State University, and Youngstown State Univeristy through the Memorandum of Understanding, without transfer. This widens your choice of coursework substantially. The approval form must be completed well before you register for your desired course. Discuss this with the Graduate Coordinator and/or your Advisor.
  2. You can take coursework in allied fields; such as GIS or Remote Sensing courses in Geography; the Wetlands, Limnology, and Ecology courses in Biological Sciences; the Environmental Chemistry courses in Chemistry; computer programming courses in Math & Computer Science; or relevant courses in Physics. See the Registrar's website for available courses by semester. Note: Please consult primary advisor before enrolling in cross-discipline coursework. 

How will the composition of my committee change as I progress toward my degree?

The candidacy examination committee consists of three members of the geology graduate faculty: the advisor, the minor advisor, and one general geology examiner. All members of the committee must have the appropriate graduate faculty rank as described in the departmental handbook. The dissertation committee, which evaluates the student's dissertation proposal, consists of the candidacy examination committee, plus an outside member who may be from another department on campus or another institution if approved by the Graduate College. All members of the committee must have the appropriate graduate faculty rank as described in the College of Arts and Sciences Rules Regarding the Final Examination.

Upon completion of the dissertation proposal defense, the dissertation final examination committee is formed which consists of the dissertation committee and a graduate representative appointed by the Office of Graduate Affairs of the College of Arts and Sciences. The graduate representative may also serve as the moderator for the defense, or another individual may be appointed. The guidelines regarding the graduate representative and/or moderator are found in the College of Arts and Sciences Rules regarding the Graduate Faculty Representative and Dissertation Defense Moderator.

Requests for an outside committee member from another institution should be made in writing by the advisor to the graduate coordinator and accompanied by a current version of the CV for the prospective outside member. Such requests must be approved by the Associate Dean of the Graduate College.

Can I transfer geological coursework from another institution?

Yes, you can transfer up to 12 hours of graduate credit, graded B or higher, from an accredited institution, as long as the work was done within 10 years of the completion date of your Ph.D. in Geology.

Where can I go to get the Dissertation style guide and the necessary forms I will need as I progress through the program?

The KSU College of Arts & Sciences Style Guide and Instructions for Typing Theses and Dissertations (updated in Fall 2015) is available in the main Geology office. You can also access these materials from this website, or at the appropriate page in the Arts and Sciences website. Libraries and Media Services also provides guidelines for preparing your thesis or dissertation to help you complete the process.

How much time do I have to complete my degree?

See the University policy for degree completion. Application for extension of time limits.

It is expected that the doctoral degree students entering Kent State with a baccalaureate will complete the degree in no more than 10 years. Normally, doctoral degree students entering with a master’s degree will complete the degree in no more than nine years. Students proceeding from the baccalaureate will normally pass the candidacy examination within five years, and students already possessing a master’s degree will pass the candidacy examination within four calendar years of the first graduate registration at Kent State University. A doctoral candidate is expected to satisfactorily complete the dissertation and pass the final oral examination within five calendar years after having passed the candidacy examination. Individual disciplines may have shorter time limits, and students should consult with their specific program’s department. *

When an extension of any of these time limits seems to be necessary and proper, the student and advisor will petition the student’s department for an extension. The extension may be denied, in which case the student will be dismissed, or it may be granted with qualification. The student, advisor and college dean must be informed of the decision in writing. If the extension exceeds one year, the approval of the college dean is required. Requests for time extensions exceeding one year must be submitted to the college dean with evidence that the degree candidate is current in his/her field of study.

Students who must be away from their studies for one or more semesters for personal, family, financial or other compelling reasons may apply for a leave of absence. More information can be found in the Leave of Absence policy in this Catalog.

Upon receiving their graduate degree, students are inactivated and are no longer eligible to register for courses at Kent State University. If students wish to continue their studies at Kent State, they will need to reapply to the appropriate academic unit and be accepted for another graduate degree program or as a non-degree student.

Information about the Minimum Enrollment Policy:

Students who have defended their PhD dissertation proposal, or who have some other programmatic or funding stipulation need to be continuously enrolled from semester to semester (with the three summer terms counting as one semester). Doctoral students should register for 15 Dissertation I or II credits during the academic year and 15 Dissertation I or dissertation II credits as appropriate during at least one summer term to maintain continuous enrollment. After completing 30 hours of Dissertation I credits, a student should register for Dissertation II credits each term until they defend their Dissertation.

Information about the Continuous Enrollment Policy: