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General Requirements

  1. Courses: A minimum grade point average of 3.0 is required prior to taking the candidacy exam, the comprehensive exam, the final exam, and graduation. Ph.D. students in Horticulture are required to take the following:
    1. Ph.D. students are required to complete 2 credits in scientific presentation (AGRO 555), or substitutes may be permitted with the approval of the graduate program director.
    2. Three credits of public seminar (HORT 590 - Colloquium) is required.  One credit of Hort 590 is awarded for the public presentation of Ph.D. dissertation research in a regular department seminar series or by special arrangement. Register for Hort 590 during the semester of the public presentation.
    3. Ph.D students are required to complete 6 credits of Statistics. The statistics requirements in Horticulture shall be met my completing at least two graduate courses in statistics or statistical applications, such as AG 400, STAT 401, STAT 415, STAT 461, STAT 462, STAT 500, STAT 501, or equivalent courses from another university. The course selection must be approved by the student's doctoral committee.
    4. All Ph.D. students in Horticulture are required to take two credits (HORT 596 or HORT 602) of teaching and/or extension. Contact your advisor or the faculty supervising you for a teaching assistant or extension assignment to discuss suitable activities to meet this requirement.
    5. Ph.D. students are required to complete 3 credits of Communications.
    6. Twelve (12) credits of thesis research is required (HORT 600).
    7. The remaining course requirements will be determined by the Doctoral Advisory Committee during the program planning meeting.
  2. Residency: Each student must spend at least two consecutive semesters as a full-time student at the University Park campus during the Ph.D. program. Students should refer to the section on "Additional specific requirements" in GRADUATE DEGREE PROGRAMS BULLETIN for specific residency requirements.
  3. Continuous Registration: Students must register continuously (spring and fall semesters) from the time they pass the comprehensive exam until the thesis is accepted. Post-comprehensive Ph.D. students can maintain registration by registering for noncredit HORT 601. Note that the least expensive way for a student to work full-time on research and thesis preparation is to register for 601. Students should refer to the section on "Additional Specific Requirements" in GRADUATE DEGREE PROGRAMS BULLETIN for continuous registration requirements.
  4. Scholarship and Research Integrity: Each student is required to complete training in Scholarship and Research Integrity, preferably in the first year of study but definitely before the comprehensive exam. To meet this requirement, each student should complete the online course offered by the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative, which can be accessed here: http://citi.psu.edu , the four hour discussion-based workshop that will be offered each January by the College of Agricultural Sciences, and one additional hour of discussion that can be obtained in HORT 590.
  5. Minor Field: Ph.D. candidates in Horticulture may (but are not required to) have a minor field of study. The student, with approval of the Doctoral Advisory Committee, may elect a minor. A minor consists of no fewer than 15 credits, including those applied toward the M.S. degree, of integrated or articulated work in one field related to, but different from, that of the major. A minor program must meet the approval of the departments or committees responsible for both the major program and the minor field.
  6. English Competency Requirement: Students must demonstrate competency in use of the English language as described in "Language or English Communications" section in the Horticulture Graduate Guide.
  7. Publication of Papers Based on Thesis Research: The culmination of a student's graduate program should be the publication of thesis research. Responsibility for preparation of the manuscripts' first draft resides with the student, who should be first author. The first draft should be submitted to the student's research advisor within six (6) months after submission of an approved thesis to the Graduate School. If the first draft of the manuscript is not received within this time, the research advisor is free to write the manuscript and become senior author. Exceptions to this policy must be arranged with the student's research advisor prior to the six-month deadline. If the student prefers to have his/her research advisor prepare the manuscript with the advisor as senior author, this should be decided before the student leaves the University.