Doctoral Degree Requirements
To complete a doctoral degree at UCSB, candidates must:
Nomination of a doctoral committee is required prior to advancement to doctoral candidacy. For details, see
Departments set different requirements for the qualifying examination(s) to advance to doctoral candidacy. Students should
refer to their department-specific advancement to doctoral candidacy requirements in the General Catalog
and department handbook (designated by admission year). Students are not permitted to advance to candidacy while registered In Absentia.
To take the qualifying exam(s), students must meet the following requirements:
Satisfactory completion of all preliminary requirements established by the
University and their department (Senate reg. 350D). Students should understand their
department-specific requirements as many departments have additional standards above those established by the University
- Registration in three consecutive quarters prior to the quarter of the qualifying exam(s)
- Registration (excluding In Absentia) in the quarter taking the qualifying exam(s)
- An approved doctoral committee on file with the Graduate Division
To advance to doctoral candidacy, students must pass the department-specific written and oral exams conducted by a
doctoral committee. (Senate reg. 350D)
After the exam(s), the committee completes and signs the Doctoral Degree Form II, indicating if the
student passed or failed. If a student does not pass all or part of the qualifying exam(s), the Committee Chair should
submit to the Graduate Division the Doctoral Form II including a brief summary explaining committees'
decision and re-examination requirements.
Advancing to Doctoral Candidacy
To advance to doctoral candidacy, students must:
- Pass the qualifying exams
- Pay the $50.00 advancement to candidacy fee at the Cashier's Office
- Submit to Graduate Division the completed Doctoral Form II and Cashier's receipt
After advancing to doctoral candidacy, a student's class level changes to P2 the next registered
quarter, non-resident supplemental tuition is waived for three years
(if applicable), and additional borrowing privileges are granted at the Davidson Library.
Advancement fees help support graduate student Career and Professional Development resources and events.
Preparing for the Dissertation Defense
When preparing for a dissertation defense, students should:
If you would like to have a Graduate Division Academic Advisor conduct a “pre-check” of your dissertation, feel free to stop by the Graduate Division during business hours, prior to the week of a filing deadline due to the high volume of traffic and limited staff availability.
Preparing to File and Completing the Filing Process for a Dissertation
For details about the dissertation filing process, visit Preparing and Filing.
Degree Verification, Transcripts, and Diplomas
Diplomas are automatically mailed to the "diploma address" on record approximately 3-4 months after the date of degree
conferral. If you are unable to update your address on GOLD,
see Office of Registrar's Address Verification.
A charge will automatically be assessed to the student's BARC account for the mailing cost of the diploma. All questions
concerning verifications, transcripts, and diplomas should be addressed to the
Office of the Registrar.
Graduate Student Commencement
Each June, the Graduate Division coordinates the commencement ceremony for all graduate
degree and credential candidates.
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