VCU Bulletins

Health Related Sciences, Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Dissertation and published research requirements

Admission to candidacy

Students are eligible to begin their dissertation upon written certification by the program director and associate dean of the Graduate School that all predissertation/research requirements, including the comprehensive examinations, have been satisfied and that the student is prepared to proceed with the dissertation/research project. Copies of the certification will be forwarded to the student, the student’s formal program adviser and the dean of the School of Allied Health Professions. After admission to candidacy, students will proceed to propose, complete and defend their dissertation or three journal articles research requirement.

Enrollment requirement

Students are required to maintain continuous enrollment in ALHP 899 Dissertation Research until completion of the requirements, including the defense process.

Dissertation/research committee

After successful completion of the comprehensive exam, the student nominates a dissertation/research committee and the dissertation/research director submits the nominations in writing to the program director. Such committees will consist of a minimum of four graduate faculty members, one of whom will be outside the student’s specialty track. The program director will provide written approval of the dissertation/research committee and clear such appointments with the appropriate administrative officials.

Dissertation/research standards

The dissertation or publishable research articles must represent independent research and should be based on an original research question or hypothesis. Generally, dissertations or publishable research articles will demonstrate the student’s ability with empirical research, adhering to canons of (1) logic in conceptualization and design, (2) valid and reliable measurement, (3) appropriate analytic technique and (4) appropriate interpretation of results. Studies should be based on a formal theoretical or conceptually explicit framework for investigating a question or testing a hypothesis relevant to the allied health field.


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Last update: 6/13/2008

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