A minimum of 72 credits beyond the bachelor’s degree level is required. Up to 30 credits taken at the graduate level towards a master’s degree may be accepted for transfer. Some areas of focus within the PhD curriculum may require more than 72 credits.
The following courses and credit hours are required as part of the 72 credits:
- HRS 3000 Doctoral Seminars (4) 4 credits
- HRS 3001 Dissertation Research 18 credits
- HRS 3002 Methods of Inquiry for Rehabilitation Scientists I* 1 credit
- HRS 3003 Core Concepts in Disability and Rehabilitation I* 2 credits
- HRS 3004 Methods of Inquiry for Rehabilitation Scientists II* 1 credit
- HRS 3005 Core Concepts in Disability and Rehabilitation II* 2 credits
- Content in the areas of research design and statistics* 9 credits (taken at the University of Pittsburgh)
*Courses in chosen content expertise (credits to be arranged with advisor)
All PhD students are expected to show competency in two Core Areas plus competency in statistics and research methodology through the successful completion of a Preliminary Examination, offered in May of each year. The two Core Areas are Methods of Inquiry for Rehabilitation Scientists and Core Concepts of Disability and Rehabilitation. The sequence of Core Courses (Methods of Inquiry for Rehabilitation Scientists I, II; Core Concepts in Disability and Rehabilitation I, II) begins in the Fall term (I) and continues through the Spring term (II), and is usually taken in the first year of the PhD program.
Upon successful completion of the Methods of Inquiry Courses, and the Core Concepts Courses the next milestone is the Preliminary Examination, covering content from the * courses.
Upon successful completion of the Preliminary Examination, students will finish taking courses in their chosen area of expertise in preparation for the next milestone, the Comprehensive Examination. The Comprehensive Examination (written and oral) consists of questions in the following areas:
- Basic sciences, clinical sciences, social sciences, etc.
- Experimental methods, research design.
Upon successful completion of the Comprehensive Examination, the next milestone is the Dissertation Proposal Defense, in which students propose the mentored research study they will pursue. The final milestone is the Dissertation Defense.