Doctoral Committee and Thesis

Students who pass the qualifying examination choose a faculty member to serve as their research adviser. Each student is expected to submit a research proposal and present it to a thesis committee that consists of at least four faculty members.

The committee considers the scope of the proposed research, its suitability for doctoral research and the appropriateness of the research plan. The committee may approve the proposal without reservation or may recommend modifications.

In general, the student is expected to submit his/her research proposal after five semesters of doctoral studies. In accord with regulations of the School, each student is expected to submit a thesis and defend it before a committee of five faculty, at least one of whom hold primary appointments in another department.

Every doctoral candidate is expected to have had at least one full-length paper accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal prior to recommendation for award of the degree.

Proposal Defense

  • Expected after four semesters of doctoral studies (2 years after qualifying exam)
  • 3 committee members (BME core faculty preferred); at least 2 Biomedical Engineering core faculty should be listed as proposal committee members while 1 can be a BME joint faculty.


Thesis Defense

  • Committee of at least five faculty members, at least one of whom hold primary appointments outside BME