Program Examination One.
Each student must pass, within two years of entry,
Program Exam One,
which has three sections:
Structures and Properties, Characterization and Testing, and Thermodynamics and Processing.
The examination is usually
given in September and/or May, depending on demand.
Each student may take each section no more than twice (three times if he/she
takes the exam in his/her first semester).
The knowledge required for passing Program
Examination One is either already part of the student's previous
undergraduate experience, or else it can be acquired in core curriculum
Selection of Research Advisor,
Initiation of Research, and Specialization
The student selects a research advisor as soon as possible in his
program, and starts the research work under the advisor's direction.
The advisor and the student together appoint a Research Advisory
Committee (one of whose members is a Materials Science faculty member
from one of the other two campuses). The student will also take
specialization courses to help him in his research specialty.
The number of formal courses required depends on the rules
of the "home department." The general philosophy is to avoid
overloading the student with courses, and to maximize the time
available for research.
The student must perform satisfactorily in course work, the number and
scope of which depend on local University rules
and the suggestions of the student's research advisory committee.
Program Examination Two
Program Examination Two is a written set of questions specifically
directed to the research specialization of the student, plus an oral
examination, part of which consists of a discussion of the student's
Dissertation and Final Defense
The final defense of dissertation consists of the presentation and
acceptance (pending minor revisions) of the written dissertation, a
formal seminar, plus oral questions put to the student by the research
Administration and Organization
The program crosses school and college lines at all three Universities
of the System (UA: Colleges of Arts and Sciences, and Engineering; UAB:
Schools of Medicine, Dentistry, Optometry, Engineering, and Natural
Science and Mathematics; UAH: Colleges of Science, and Engineering).
The program is managed by the Tricampus Materials Science Coordinating
Committee, and on each campus by the Campus Materials Science Program