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PhD Kinesiology - Committee and Candidacy

Dissertation Committees

The Dissertation requirement for the Ph.D. in Kinesiology includes two components:

  1. A written Dissertation to include at least 2 manuscripts of quality and format that are submitted to a peer-reviewed scientific journal and
  2. A successful oral defense of the Dissertation.

The Dissertation Committee is responsible for the evaluation of both the written dissertation and oral defense. The Committee must be comprised of a minimum of four members, including the Committee Chair who will be the student's primary faculty mentor. This Committee Chair must be a member of the Department of Kinesiology Graduate Studies Committee or have status on the Department of Kinesiology Graduate Studies Committee. The remaining Committee members must include at least one additional faculty member from the Department of Kinesiology. If the Committee Chair is not a full time member of the Department of Kinesiology Graduate Studies Committee the remaining Committee members must include at least two members from the Department of Kinesiology. In addition the Committee must include at least one member who is external to the Department of Kinesiology. The external member may include individuals not working within UT Arlington if applicable. All Committee members must hold a terminal degree in their field and/or demonstrate the required expertise and appropriate faculty status for serving on dissertation committees.

Comprehensive Examination

  • B.S. to Ph.D.students will become eligible for the comprehensive examination when they have completed 36 hours of their graduate work.
  • M.S. to Ph.D. students will become eligible for the comprehensive examination when they have completed 18 hours of their graduate work (at UT Arlington).

These completed course hours represent the minimum requirement; however, eligibility for the comprehensive examination will be dependent on approval from the Chair of the Dissertation Committee.

Successful completion of the comprehensive examination makes students eligible for PhD candidacy. Students must be enrolled in the semester they take the comprehensive examination.

The purpose of the comprehensive examination is to evaluate the extent to which students have acquired the basic principles / knowledge in pertinent coursework. The expectation will be that students will be able to apply, integrate, and synthesize their knowledge.

When students are eligible for the comprehensive examination, the student's graduate mentor/advisor will recommend the student for the examination to the Department of Kinesiology Graduate Studies Committee for approval.

Upon completion, the comprehensive examination committee will meet to discuss the merits of the student's examination. Comprehensive examinations will only be held in regular, long semesters.

The composition of the comprehensive examination committee will be decided by the Department of Kinesiology Graduate Academic Committee. This comprehensive examination committee will be comprised of at least one member of the Graduate Academic Committee and a minimum of 2 additional members with relevant content expertise.

Following completion of the examination the Committee may recommend any of the following outcomes:

  1. Unconditional pass. With an unconditional pass, students become eligible for PhD candidacy and prepare for the defense of their dissertation proposal.
  2. Pass with conditions. A pass with conditions requires that students perform each of the conditions satisfactorily in order to become eligible for PhD candidacy.
  3. Unsatisfactory with opportunity to retake the examination. With this recommendation, the committee will specify when the retake will occur.
  4. Unsatisfactory, do not continue in program.

If the outcome of the comprehensive examination is an unconditional pass, students immediately become eligible for PhD candidacy. If the outcome is a pass with conditions, students may only become eligible for candidacy when the examining committee coordinator notifies the Associate Dean or designee that the student has successfully met the conditions stipulated by the committee.

Dissertation Proposal

Following successful completion of the oral examination the student will then need to draft a grant application to be written in the format of a National Institute of Health Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral Fellowship (F31) grant (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-16-309.html). This grant application will describe the student's dissertation projects and will also serve as the student's dissertation proposal. The student will give an oral presentation of the research proposal outlined in the grant application which will be open to the public. Following this oral presentation the student will defend the research proposal in front of the dissertation committee. This proposal defense must occur in the first long semester following successful completion of the oral comprehensive examination.