Admission to CGU doctoral programs requires a formal application and approval of the field faculty and dean. This requirement extends to students completing a master’s degree at CGU.
Doctor of Church Music Degree: The Doctor of Church Music combines excellence in church music performance with a theological background. The degree requirements are generally those of the doctoral degree, with the exceptions noted in the specific program section.
Doctor of Musical Arts Degree: The Doctor of Musical Arts degree indicates significant achievement in performance or composition. In general, the degree requirements are the same as those given for the doctoral degree, with the exceptions noted in the specific program section.
Doctor of Public Health: The Doctor of Public Health degree offers advanced training in the fundamental skills and knowledge central to each of the five core areas of public health—social and behavioral health, epidemiology, biostatistics, environmental health, and health systems as well as leadership. The DrPH program provides students with opportunities to achieve competencies in the full range of academic or professional roles within research, teaching and community practice.
Doctor of Philosophy Degree: For fields in which the Doctor of Philosophy is offered, see the Degrees & Certificates section of the Bulletin.
Joint Doctoral Degrees: Joint doctoral degrees are also offered through collaborations with other institutions of higher education.
- Education, PhD (Joint Degree with SDSU)
- Engineering & Computational Mathematics, PhD (Joint Degree with CSULB)
Specific information regarding degree requirements for each program is available in the section for the individual program. Refer to the program listing in the Degrees & Certificates section of the Bulletin.
Generally, a minimum of 72 units of coursework is required for a doctoral degree.
University policy requires you to maintain your student status throughout your career at CGU, from enrollment in courses through the dissertation process and on to graduation. Joint doctoral students should be aware of additional requirements because of their joint program status.
You must continue to maintain your student status (see the Registration & Enrollment section) until you complete all of your degree requirements. This means that if you expect to graduate in either the fall or spring semester you must register for that term; if you are done with coursework you should enroll Doctoral Study. Students graduating in the summer term are not required to register.
Students intending on graduating during the summer term, please note: Repayment periods on loans are based upon the semester of your last enrollment, not upon your graduation date, and generally begin six months after your last date of at least part-time attendance. For summer doctoral graduates, this often results in your last date of attendance falling in mid-May, and your repayment period would begin around November of the same year. If this is a concern for you, please contact the Financial Aid Office prior to submitting your Intent to Graduate form to discuss your options.
Degree requirements for the doctoral degree program must be completed within seven years from the semester in which the student was admitted to the program. This time period is adjusted when transfer credit is accepted toward the degree.
- Reduced by 6 months if 12 units or less of transfer credit is accepted
- Reduced by 12 months if 13 or more units of transfer credit is accepted
Time to degree may be extended by submitting an Extension of Time for Degree Request. Forms are available on the Registrar’s Form Index webpage.
Students must be enrolled continuously, either for credit or through Doctoral Study (499), until the degree is earned. For students who must still complete unit requirements, enrollment in Doctoral Research (495), Tutorial Reading (497), or Independent Study (498) is advised. Grades for Dissertation Research are not required until the oral defense is passed and the dissertation is submitted. No grades are issued for Doctoral Study.
Students who do not maintain a continuous student status with the University may be required to reinstate, or to reapply to the program if more than five years has passed since the last term of enrollment. Time to degree is adjusted whenever a student is readmitted. Please refer to the Registration & Enrollment section for reinstatement procedures.
The residency requirement ensures that students who graduate from CGU have been fully enriched by the program characteristics and faculty interactions that distinguish their degrees as CGU degrees.
The doctoral degree residency requirement may be met by either two semesters of full-time study in a 2-year period or by the completion of 48 units of coursework within a 3-year period, including work in the summer sessions. Enrollment in Dissertation Research (495) and Doctoral Study (499) do not satisfy the residency requirement.
Students who receive transfer credit meet the residency requirement in one of the following ways.
- If 12 units or less of transfer credit is approved, by completing two full-time semesters of coursework within a 2-year period or by completing 36 units within a 2-1/2-year period
- If 13 to 24 units of transfer credit is approved, by completing 24 units within a 2-year period
Students who are admitted to a doctoral program after completing a CGU master’s degree are subject to the same regulations on time to degree and residency as students who enter CGU after completing a master’s degree at another institution. Units earned in a CGU master’s program generally count toward the unit requirement for a doctoral degree in the same field. Because coursework requirements differ from field to field, not all CGU master’s units may count toward doctoral degree requirements. Students should consult their doctoral faculty advisors.
Refer to the Bulletin’s section on Transfer Credit for qualifications and limitations.
Given the changing nature of graduate education and the increasingly complex problems requiring experts to collaborate across different disciplines, faculty established the Transdisciplinary Studies program as a part of the graduate curriculum in 2004.
Doctoral students admitted or readmitted in Fall 2004 or later, are required to complete a Transdisciplinary course prior to the completion of 48 units toward their doctoral program, including transfer credits.
To fulfill this requirement, students must enroll in a CGU course section headed by the prefix TNDY and successfully complete the 4-unit course (or two 2-unit TNDY courses). Transfer units and audited courses may not be used to meet this requirement.
The course will count as 4 units towards the doctoral degree requirement. It will not add any additional units to the student’s degree requirements nor count against the total number of transfer units from previous graduate coursework.
The doctoral Transdisciplinary course requirement does not apply to students enrolled in the doctoral program in Botany, nor in the joint doctoral programs with CSU Long Beach or San Diego State University.
Some masters programs have their own Transdisciplinary Studies course requirements. Please consult your specific academic program for details.
Specific degree program requirements are known as milestones. Students must be enrolled in order for milestones to be accepted and recorded on the student’s official transcript. Progress to degree in the successful and timely completion of degree milestones is governed by the University’s policy on Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) . Forms are available on the Registrar’s Form Index webpage.
Reading proficiency in two approved foreign languages is normally required, except when the program faculty accept substitutions. Substitutions may include statistics, mathematics, computer programming, and others in selected fields. You must demonstrate proficiency by either passing an exam, enrolling in a qualified course and receiving a grade B or better, or other acceptable and documented process. Students should consult their specific programs. Forms are available on the Registrar’s Form Index webpage.
Students who have fulfilled a research tool at another institution may petition their faculty to have these research tools accepted. An official transcript is required to substantiate that completion of the applicable coursework occurred within the last three years. Entering students should petition their academic programs as soon as possible after acceptance.
Verification and Documentation: Satisfaction of each required research tool is documented on a Research Tool Approval form. This form is completed by your department and submitted to the Registrar’s Office. Research tools are recorded on your transcript under the Non-Course Milestones section.
Tools Completed Outside CGU: If you completed a research tool at another institution, you may petition to apply the tool to your CGU degree program. Non-CGU tools must meet the following qualifications.
- Transfer credit requirements apply - that is, graduate level achievement from an accredited institution and documented on an official transcript
- In compliance with transfer credit policies, grades received in non-CGU coursework must be B or better
- Tools completed at another institution must have been accomplished within three years of the date you of your petition
If you wish to transfer tools to your CGU degree program, be sure to petition your department as early as possible after you begin your studies at CGU to meet the three year requirement. Submit your request as follows:
- Complete an academic petition form.
- Attach an official transcript that documents your completion of the tool. If this information was included in the transcript you provided upon admission, you need not obtain a new transcript. Simply indicate on the petition that your official transcript is already on file. Your department will make and attach a copy of that transcript to your petition.
- Submit the petition to your department for approval and forwarding to the Registrar’s Office.
When a student has completed all program requirements, the advisor and dean of the student’s program approve a committee to administer the qualifying examinations. Upon successful completion of the exam(s), the committee reports the results to the registrar’s office. Students are expected to successfully complete their qualifying examinations prior to advancing to candidacy and within six months of the established time to degree period of the program. Forms are available on the Registrar’s Form Index webpage.
Prerequisites for Qualifying Examinations: Generally, the following requirements must be met before a student is permitted to take qualifying examinations.
- Full graduate standing must be attained.
- Requirements for research tools, outlined in the individual program sections, must be satisfied.
- The student must have completed not less than two years of full-time graduate study, or 48 units, including transfer credit. Courses in which the student has received an incomplete grade do not qualify toward the 48 units needed for eligibility.
- Individual departments might have more prerequisites, please see your academic department for more information.
Type of Exams: Refer to your department and the requirements for your degree program to determine the type of qualifying exams you must complete.
Scheduling Exams: Qualifying exams are scheduled by your department. Your advisor or dean approves a committee to administer the examination whose results are reported to the Registrar’s Office using the Qualifying Exam Approval form. Exam results are posted to your transcript in the Non-Course Milestones section.
Failing an Exam: Students who fail to pass either written or oral examinations are permitted, on the recommendation of the student’s advisor and dean, to take a second examination after a stipulated period of time. This period must be no less than three months and no more than one calendar year after the first examination. If the results of the second examination are unsatisfactory, no further examinations are permitted, except upon recommendation of the graduate faculty in the field concerned and with the approval of the provost.
If you are unable to pass your required qualifying examinations within the time to degree established for your degree program, you may be subject to dismissal from your program.
The membership of a student’s dissertation committee, including changes as they become necessary, must be reported to the registrar’s office. Each dissertation committee consists of at least three members drawn from the core CGU faculty or the Claremont Colleges Extended Faculty , on the condition that at least one committee member be a core CGU faculty member from the candidate’s department. CGU encourages the inclusion of an external expert, or experts, on the committee. This outside examiner or reader is in addition to the three members required for the committee. The outside examiner may be a faculty member from another institution or a qualified practitioner from the student’s field of study. If approved by the department, the outside examiner may vote in the committee’s proceedings and may be offered an honorarium. All dissertation committees are approved by the dean of the school. Exceptions to the make-up of a particular committee require the approval of the provost.
The membership of a student’s dissertation committee, including changes as they become necessary, must be reported to the Registrar’s Office. Forms are available on the Registrar’s Form Index webpage.
Identifying Your Dissertation Committee: As you begin to refine a topic for your dissertation, you will identify an advisor who will chair your dissertation committee. At the same time, you and your chair will identify members of The Claremont Colleges to comprise your committee. A committee must be established and reported to the Registrar’s Office on a Designation of Dissertation Committee form. It is this committee which will approve your dissertation proposal and advance you to candidacy.
Be sure your dissertation committee complies with CGU policies and that any changes to your committee membership are reported to the Registrar’s Office using a Designation of Dissertation Committee form.
On all approval forms submitted to the Registrar’s Office, individual members of the committee must personally affix their own signatures or provide other written evidence of individual approval. Such evidence may include written documentation faxed to the Registrar’ Office at (909) 607-7285 or an e-mail from an institutional or professional domain. If approval is provided by such documentation, “See attached” may be recorded on the signature line for the individual. Under no circumstances may a committee chair, another member, or anyone else sign for a colleague.
Exceptions to Dissertation Committee Membership: Exceptions to the make-up of a dissertation committee must be approved by the Provost. Requests should be submitted by the dean of the school either through a Petition for Exception to CGU Policy form. Requests should include the following.
- Clear statement of the situation and options considered before requesting the exception
- Compelling reasons for approving the exception
- Curriculum vitae (CV) of the external examiner
If approved, the Provost’s Office will notify the Registrar’s Office. Documentation for an approved exception is retained in the student’s file.
Students are ready to advance to candidacy and begin work on their dissertation (or paper/project for those doctoral degrees not requiring a dissertation) if all of the following qualifications as specified by your program are complete: all coursework, qualifying exams , and research tools. Students are responsible for program requirements in effect for the semester of their admission or last readmission, whichever is the most recent, and published in the CGU Bulletin for that academic year.
Advancement to candidacy for the doctoral degree occurs when the student’s dissertation or project proposal is accepted and approved by the student’s committee. A copy of the student’s proposal must be attached to the Advancement to Candidacy form filed with the Registrar’s Office.
The dissertation proposal is a contract between the student and the committee detailing expectations and requirements of the dissertation or project. The content, organization, format, and length of the proposal are determined by your committee. Any changes to your proposal must be approved by all members of your committee and documented on a Declaration of Change to Approved Proposal form. A copy of the revised proposal must be attached to the form, which is filed with the Registrar’s Office.
Doctoral students advance to candidacy when their dissertation or project proposals are approved by the student’s committee. Upon advancement to candidacy, students are ABD or “All But Dissertation.”
Doctoral Study Requirements: To maintain their student status, students must be registered for each semester during their career at CGU. With the exception of summer, which is not a required semester, students must enroll in Doctoral Study for every semester until graduation. All registration and Add/Drop deadlines as outlined in the Academic Calendar apply.
If students are not registered for the semester, the Registrar’s Office cannot accept or process reports of academic progress.
The dissertation defense, sometimes referred to as the final oral examination, should take place within one month from submission of a dissertation to the committee for review. For students intending to graduate in a specific semester, the degree completion deadline announced in the Academic Calendar applies.
Requirements: Within one month of completing your dissertation and receiving the concurrence of your dissertation chair, you may defend your dissertation. The following requirements must also have been met:
- You must submit an Intent to Receive a Degree form to the Registrar’s Office for the term in which you expect to graduate by the deadline for submission established in the Academic Calendar . Please remember that if you submit an Intent to Receive a Degree form for one semester and must delay your graduation term for any reason, you must submit a new Intent form for the next term in which you expect to complete your degree requirements. These forms do not automatically roll over from one term to the next.
- You have maintained your student status and are enrolled in Doctoral Study during the semester of your intended defense. Completion of your dissertation and your readiness to defend is an indicator that you are on the threshold of graduation. Make sure that you are enrolled in Doctoral Study for the semester in which you will complete your degree requirements. Enrollment in Doctoral Study is not required for Summer unless you were not enrolled during the previous Spring term. Consult the Registrar’s Office if you are uncertain of your need to enroll in Doctoral Study.
- Your completed dissertation has been delivered to all members of your committee at least two weeks before the scheduled defense date.
- Committee members are given at least two weeks advanced notice of the date the dissertation defense is scheduled.
- All members of your dissertation committee must agree to the date and time of your defense. Committee members must also be present at the defense, whether physically or by other technologically-assisted means. As a minimum, you and one committee member must be physically present in the same location.
- The dissertation defense is a formal, public event of our academic community and is announced by the Registrar’s Office. Submit a completed Request for Dissertation Defense Announcement form to the Registrar’s Office to ensure that a minimum of two weeks advanced notice is provided to the CGU community.
A Final Approval for Doctoral Students form must be submitted to the Registrar’s Office to document the student’s successful defense and approval of the dissertation itself. If revisions are requested to the dissertation during a successful dissertation defense, an additional Final Approval for Doctoral Students form must be submitted to the Registrar’s Office when the revised dissertation has been reviewed and approved. All approval forms require the signatures of all members of the dissertation committee and the dean. Students may not graduate or receive their degrees until all of the required approvals have been received by the Registrar’s Office and the student has submitted the final, approved version of the dissertation to the ETD Administrator.
Approvals: You have met all eligibility requirements for your degree when all of the following requirements are satisfied:
- You have passed your dissertation defense–that is, satisfactorily completed your oral exam.
- You have submitted your dissertation to the Registrar’s Office via the ETD Administrator in the format requested and its final version is approved by your dissertation committee.
A Final Approval for Doctoral Students form is used to document your completion of these degree requirements. If you pass your defense and your dissertation is accepted without need for revision, only one form is necessary. If, however, revisions are required, a separate Degree Completion Status Form must be completed and submitted at the time the revised dissertation is approved.
For all Final Approval for Doctoral Students forms, the signature of each committee member is required. On all approval forms submitted to the Registrar’s Office, individual members of the committee must personally affix their own signatures or provide other written evidence of the individual’s approval. Such evidence may include written documentation faxed to the Registrar’s Office at (909) 607-7285 or an e-mail from an institutional or professional domain. If approval is provided by such documentation, “See attached” must be recorded on the signature line for the individual. Under no circumstances may a committee chair, another member, or anyone else sign for a colleague.
All Final Approval for Doctoral Students forms and the final, approved version of your dissertation must be received by the Registrar’s Office by the degree completion deadline posted in the Academic Calendar in order to receive a degree for the applicable semester. Regardless of the date you complete your degree requirements; all degrees are conferred and recorded on the degree conferral date for the semester. This date is usually the last day of the semester and is published in the University’s Academic Calendar .
If you do not meet the degree completion deadline, your degree may be delayed until the next semester. An additional semester of enrollment in Doctoral Study and a new Intent To Receive a Degree form may be required. Contact the Registrar’s Office for specifics regarding your situation and individual requirements.
Failing the Dissertation Defense: If a student fails to successfully complete a dissertation defense, the student may be permitted, upon the recommendation of the graduate faculty in the field concerned, to take a second examination not less than three months and no more than one calendar year after the first examination. You must maintain your student status and continue to enroll in Doctoral Study. During this period, work with your dissertation chair to determine your readiness to defend again. If the second defense is failed, no further attempts are permitted.
Upon completion of a successful dissertation defense and before a degree is awarded, the student must submit the final, approved dissertation (submission of DMA or DCM project papers is optional) to the Registrar’s Office through the ProQuest Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETD) Administrator. Submission must be made by the degree completion deadline announced in the Academic Calendar . Failure to meet the degree completion deadline may result in delays to the student’s degree conferral term.
ProQuest Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETD) Administrator
Submission of the dissertation to the online ProQuest ETD Administrator is required for the completion of degree requirements. Dissertations and theses are published for CGU by ProQuest/UMI and the Claremont Colleges Libraries digital repository, Scholarship@Claremont. Both CGU and ProQuest have manuscript formatting requirements which are outlined in the Dissertation Formatting and Filing Requirements Guide available on the Registrar’s Form Index website. Documents submitted to the ETD are not eligible for publication until approved and released by CGU.
CGU certificates and degrees are conferred by the Board of Trustees upon the recommendation of the faculty of your department. Each semester, the Registrar’s Office compiles and submits a list of doctoral, masters, and certificate candidates to the Board for their consideration and approval.
In order to be included on the University’s official degree list, you must file the Intent to Receive a Degree form by the semester deadline published in the Academic Calendar . Forms are required from all candidates for certificates as well as for doctoral and master’s degrees.
Your Intent to Receive a Degree form is valid only for the semester of your declaration. Upon receipt, your name is added to the degree candidacy list and your eligibility to enroll in future semesters is cancelled unless you are going on for another degree. If you determine that you will not complete your degree in the semester of your declaration, proceed as follows:
- Notify your department immediately. Your department must request reactivation of your eligibility to enroll in classes for the next semester.
- Verify your degree progress dates to determine whether you may need to request an Extension of Time to complete your degree.
- To avoid late registration and other fees, ensure that your ability to register for classes is reestablished before all registration deadlines announced in the Academic Calendar. Review any other service indicators (holds) that may impede your ability to register by the deadline dates.
- Submit a new Intent to Receive a Degree when you determine a new semester for completing your degree requirements.
You are not eligible for your degree until the following items are received by the Registrar’s Office:
- Applicable Final Approval for Doctoral Students form(s) are received from your department
- Submission of the final version of your dissertation, including any revisions requested by your dissertation committee, through the ETD Administrator
- A deadline for degree requirements is established for each semester and published in the Academic Calendar. Documents received after this deadline may delay conferral of a degree until the next semester.
- Degrees are conferred once per term, regardless of the date you complete requirements. See the Academic Calendar for specific dates. Degrees are posted to transcripts upon approval of CGU’s Board of Trustees and verification by the Registrar’s Office of the completion of all degree requirements.
- Official verification of your degree is provided by your CGU transcript. For students who may need interim documentation for employers or other agencies, a letter of degree requirement completion may be requested from the Registrar’s Office after all degree requirements have been submitted, approved, and accepted.