PhD in Computer Science

The doctoral program is designed to provide the highest level of academic scholarship and research in the disciplines of computer science, software engineering and cybersecurity. The goal is to produce qualified professionals for research and teaching positions in the academic world, as well as equivalent positions in industry and government.

Admission Requirements

Each potential candidate must meet the general admission requirements and follow the process for applying presented in the Academic Overview section.

To qualify for admission to the doctoral program in computer science, a candidate must demonstrate the potential for success in this program. A student may do so by one of the following means:

  • Successful completion of a bachelor of science degree in computer science from an accredited institution, with a GPA of at least 3.5.
  • Successful completion of a master of science degree in computer science or a related field from another accredited institution, with a GPA of at least 3.5.

Also required are three letters from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic and research ability recommending doctoral study. Applicants are strongly encouraged to be aware of the research interests of faculty in the School of Computing. Scores from the GRE General Test are required, and the Subject Test in Computer Science is recommended.

Degree Requirements

The degree of doctor of philosophy is conferred in recognition of both breadth of scientific competence in computer science and technical research capabilities, as demonstrated by producing an acceptable dissertation. The required work consists of advanced studies in preparation for specialized research, and completion of an original research program resulting in a significant contribution to the body of knowledge in the subject investigated. Each student must qualify for admission, complete an approved program of study, pass a comprehensive examination, complete a program of significant original research and defend a dissertation concerning the research. Each candidate is expected to publish major portions of the dissertation in refereed conferences and journals, and is strongly encouraged to teach while pursuing the degree.

See the FIT catalog for information on the PhD in Computer Science.


Forms and Information for PhD students: