Ph.D. in Computational Science

Doctor of Philosophy in Computational Science - Emphasis in Computer Science

Admission Requirements

Students expecting regular admission to the program should hold a bachelor's or master's degree in computer science, or a bachelor's or master's degree in another discipline, with demonstrated proficiency in the areas of computer architecture, data structures and algorithms, and software design. Students should possess a grade point average of at least 3.5 on all graduate work attempted. Prospective students should submit scores from the General section of the Graduate Record Examination and three letters of recommendation from persons qualified to assess the student's readiness for doctoral student. Letters should be sent to the department.

Degree Requirements

Students expecting regular admission to the program should hold a bachelor's or master's degree in computer science. A minimum of eighty-four (84) graduate semester hours beyond the bachelor's degree or fifty-four (54) graduate semester hours beyond the master's is required for the degree. A 3.0 GPA is required to graduate. All students in the program are required to complete a curriculum consisting of the following courses:

    Research Tools courses:

COS 701 (Visualization Techniques), COS 702 (Data Analysis Techniques), COS 703 (Data Handling Techniques)


    Core courses:

CSC 726 (Advanced Computer Architecture), CSC (Advanced Computing Algorithms), CSC 733 (Advanced Distributed Database Systems), CSC 730 (Parallel and Distribuuted Computing), COS 898 - 12 hrs (Dissertation)


Following completion of these courses, a student will form his or her doctoral committee. The doctoral committee shall consist of five members. A minimum of three members must be faculty of the School of Computing; a minimum of one member must be a faculty member of a USM Computational Science program, and one member may consist of any qualified faculty member with expertise in a mathematical or scientific discipline. A student's committee will assist the student in selecting courses for the remaining required hours, in accordance with the student's specific skill requirements and research interests. Courses may be selected from both Computer Science offerings, as well as from relevant courses of other departments. Students must write and orally defend a dissertation - 12 hours of 898 are required.

Students entering the program with a bachelor's degree may elect to earn a master's degree in Computer Science while enrolled in the Ph.D. program by utilizing track 2 of the program requirements for a Master of Science degree in Computer Science. 700-level courses taken as part of the master's degree requirements can not be counted as hours toward the Ph.D. degree. Core courses taken in conjunction with the correspondingly numbered master's level courses can not be counted as hours toward the Ph.D. degree, but they count for satisfying the core knowledge requirement. For more details, refer to the Master of Science Program in Computer Science.

Plan of Study.

Students must submit their signed, official Plan of Study Form to the Graduate Studies Office by the end of the second semester they are enrolled. The Plan of Study Forms are available at www.usm.edu/graduatestudies.

Residency

Students must meet the residency requirements specified in the graduate bulletin.

Continuous Enrollment Requirement

Students must meet the enrollment requirement specified in the graduate bulletin and the requirements of the Graduate Studies Office.

Other Requirements

Students must meet the requirements of the Graduate School of The University of Southern Mississippi. They are required, additionally, to pass a comprehensive examination covering the core CSC curriculum, to submit a formal prospectus that has been approved by the doctoral committee, and to present an acceptable copy of the dissertation to the doctoral committee at least fourteen calendar days prior to the defense of the dissertation. This defense will take place at an advertised research seminar, open to members of the university community.

Comprehensive and Qualifying Examinations

To remain in good standing in the program, each student, upon completion of the core curriculum, must take and pass a comprehensive examination. The examination, which is normally administered in the spring and fall of each year, consists of four sections covering the four corresponding areas of the core curriculum, and is prepared by a committee of computer science faculty. Students must register for the examination two months prior to the examination date and will have one, and only one, additional opportunity to pass the examination, retaking only those sections of the examination that they failed to pass at the first sitting. The opportunity to try the examination a second time must be exercised no later than the corresponding semester in the year immediately following the first attempt. Students failing to pass all sections of the examination after the second try will be dismissed from the program.