Current Students

The Preliminary Exam

All HCDE PhD students participate in the preliminary exam during the autumn quarter of their second year in the program.

All tenure-line HCDE faculty are members of the preliminary exam committee. Each member of the committee shall have one vote in deciding whether a student passes, fails, or must re-do part of the exam—oral or written. Decisions will be made by a majority vote.

Possible outcomes for the exam are: pass, fail, or revisions required. Committee feedback to the student may include (a) changes that are required before a passing evaluation is given, or (b) changes that are suggested for making the research more professional, suitable for publication, etc. In other words, the exam is also a valuable opportunity to provide feedback to students that can help improve their scholarly work.

For 2020, the presentation dates are 13 and 20 November (please hold both). Reflections and papers will be due 30 October. Because COVID-19 has affected some research projects, we will also work with second year students and their mentors to schedule at least one alternative date for prelims, in winter and/or spring quarters.

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