Oral Exam

Qualifying (Orals) Exam Timeline and Policy & Procedures 17-18

General Information

Oral exams are generally held during the academic year (September through May). Although you may arrange to take them during the summer, please know that faculty members have no obligation to serve on summer oral exam committees. You must be registered during the semester in which you take your oral exam or, if you take the orals during the summer, you must be registered the semester before or after.

The orals committee, without exception, consists of four members, at least one of whom, but no more than two must be from outside the Department of Economics. All members of the committee must have Ph.D.s and be members of the Academic Senate. Faculty with joint appointments, without regard to the percent time of the appointment (including 0% FTE), are considered inside members and may also serve in the capacity of the chair. The chair of your oral exam committee, may not also serve as the chair of your dissertation committee. Department policy stipulates that the dissertation committee chair may not serve on the orals committee in any capacity.

Procedures

Paper work must be submitted at least three weeks prior to the date of the exam.

  1. Complete the Departmental Oral Qualifying Examination Application and obtain the signature of your dissertation advisor who will certify that you have an acceptable prospectus and are prepared to take the oral exam.
  2. Bring the Departmental Oral Qualifying Examination Application for approval of your oral exam committee members. Assuming the oral exam committee is approved have the Graduate Committee Chair sign the Departmental Oral Qualifying Examination.
  3. Go to your student file in Cal Central under "Submit a form," complete the Higher Degree Committees Form to apply for the qualifying exam, or modify your Committee:  How to use the Higher Degree Committees Form- opens in new window. List three fields of research; include your two fields and a non-departmental field along the lines of your outside committee member.
  4. Submit both the Departmental Oral Qualifying Examination Application and the Higher Degree Committees Form for Qualifying Exam to the Economics Graduate Office no less than three weeks prior to the date of your exam.
  5. Confirm the date and time of the exam with all committee members.
  6. Inform the Economics Graduate Office of the date and time of the exam once cofirmed.
  7. Reserve 506 Evans with the administrative assistant in 530 Evans Hall as soon as the date and time is confirmed. Reserve the room for 3 hours, although the exam, in most cases, will only last two hours.
  8. Provide copies of your prospectus to each of your committee members.
  9. Approximately one week prior to your exam remind all committee members of the date, time and place.
  10. No later than 24 hours prior to your exam submit a copy of the most up-to-date version of your prospectus, signed on the front cover by your dissertation advisor, to the Economics Graduate Office for your file.
  11. After passing the exam, go to your student file in Cal Central under "Submit a form" - Higher Degree Committees Form to apply for Doctoral (dissertation) candidacy. Graduate students who plan to use human subjects in their research must complete the CITI course and print out the certificate of completion prior to applying for advancement to candidacy. This certificate must be submitted with the advancement form. **If you are eligible for the Degree Completion Fellowship, be sure to turn this form in prior to June 30th of the year in which you pass your orals.