2014-2015 Program Requirements for UCLA Graduate Degrees
Applicable only to students admitted during the 2014-2015 academic year.
School of Public Health
The Department of Epidemiology offers the Master of Science (M.S.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degrees in Epidemiology.
An adviser is appointed for each new master's student by the head of the respective department. Student and adviser together agree upon a study list for each academic quarter and any subsequent alterations must be approved by both the adviser and the Associate Dean of Student Affairs. Students are expected to meet with their advisers each quarter. A departmental guidance committee is established when the student has completed approximately half of the program for the master's degree. Members of the departmental guidance committee are nominated by the department chair after consultation with the student and the student's adviser.
An adviser is responsible for the student's academic progress. Progress is evaluated on an ongoing basis. At the end of each quarter, the Associate Dean of Student Affairs reviews academic listings of students and notifies them and the advisers when the cumulative grade-point average is below 3.0. Advisers review each case with their advisees and make recommendations to the Associate Dean of Student Affairs for continuance or dismissal. Students who wish to change advisers must file a petition which must be approved by the new adviser, the department chair, and the Associate Dean for Student Affairs.
Areas of Study
Students should consult the graduate adviser.
Foreign Language Requirement
Students must complete at least one year of graduate residence at the University of California and a minimum of 56 units: 38 units of core courses and 18 units of elective courses. At least 20 units must be in the 200 or 500 series. A maximum of one two-unit, approved Epidemiology seminar, and one 596 course (four units) may be applied toward the total course requirements. If the student intends to write a thesis, four units of Epidemiology 598 (thesis research) may also be applied to the 18-unit elective requirement.
Mandatory core courses are Epidemiology 200A (six units), 200B (six units), 200C (six units), 220 (four units); Biostatistics 100A (four units) or 110A, 100B (four units) or 110B; one additional statistics course (four units) in regression or multivariate methods that is approved by the department; and two units of an approved data-management course(s). Equivalent courses must be approved by the department. Each core course may be waived if a similar course has been taken elsewhere and the student passes the waiver examination. A waiver course does not reduce the unit requirements. Elective courses include all those offered by the department with the exception of those stated above.
All courses included for advancement to candidacy, except the approved Epidemiology seminar, must have a letter grade (not S/U). Students must maintain an average of no less than 3.0 (B) in all courses required or elected during graduate residence at the University of California. In addition, students must maintain an average of no less than 3.0 (B) in Epidemiology 200A-200B-200C and 220.
Comprehensive Examination Plan
If the comprehensive examination option is chosen, a guidance committee of three department faculty is appointed. An examination on the major area of study must be passed. If failed, the examination may be repeated once. In addition, the student must complete a research project with an article appropriate for publication.
Every master's degree thesis plan requires the completion of an approved thesis that demonstrates the student's ability to perform original, independent research.
If the thesis option is approved, a thesis committee of three faculty is appointed by the dean of the Graduate Division on recommendation of the department. The chair of the committee and at least one other member must hold academic appointments in the department. The committee approves the thesis prospectus before the student may file for advancement to candidacy. The thesis must be acceptable to the thesis committee.
From graduate admission to award of the degree, normal progress is from three to seven quarters. Upper time limit for completion of all requirements is seven quarters of enrollment, including quarters enrolled in previous graduate study at a UC campus prior to admission to the School of Public Health. Maximum time allowable from enrollment to graduation, including leaves of absence, is five years.
An academic adviser is assigned to each new student by the department chair. Student and adviser together agree upon a study list for each academic quarter; any subsequent alterations must be approved by the adviser. Courses to be taken must be approved by the adviser.
Major Fields or Subdisciplines
Consult the graduate adviser.
Foreign Language Requirement
Students must fulfill the course requirements for the M.S. degree in Epidemiology with an average of no less than 3.3 (B+) in Epidemiology 200A-200B-200C and 220. Equivalent courses taken at other institutions may be used to fulfill these requirements subject to approval by the department. Continuation in the doctoral program is contingent on satisfying the 3.3 (B+) average grade-point requirement in the four core courses. Students must also take Epidemiology M204 (four units) and one additional statistics course (four units) beyond the M.S. requirements, one course on pathobiology (four units), and at least three quarters of Epidemiology 292 (two units per quarter). The statistics and pathobiology courses must be approved by the department. In addition, students must take at least 12 units of graduate-level courses (excluding 500-level courses) outside the department. The 12 units must be selected with the approval of the academic adviser. Students with prior post-baccalaureate coursework may petition for substitution of part or all of the 12-unit requirement. Recommendation for the degree is based on the attainments of the candidate rather than on the completion of specific courses.
Teaching experience is recommended but not required for the doctoral degree.
Written and Oral Qualifying Examinations
Academic Senate regulations require all doctoral students to complete and pass University written and oral qualifying examinations prior to doctoral advancement to candidacy. Also, under Senate regulations the University oral qualifying examination is open only to the student and appointed members of the doctoral committee. In addition to University requirements, some graduate programs have other pre-candidacy examination requirements. What follows in this section is how students are required to fulfill all of these requirements for this doctoral program.
Before advancement to candidacy, students must pass the departmental written doctoral examination and the University Oral Qualifying Examination. Normally for the written doctoral examination no more than one reexamination is allowed. A doctoral committee, consisting of at least four faculty members who hold professorial appointments at UCLA, is nominated and submitted to the Graduate Division and, if approved, administers the oral qualifying examination after successful completion of the written examination. Two of the faculty must be tenured. Three of the four must hold appointments in the department; at least one must hold an appointment in another department at UCLA.
After completing the course requirements and passing both the written doctoral examination and the oral qualifying examination, the student may be advanced to candidacy and complete work on a dissertation in the principal field of study.
Advancement to Candidacy
Students are advanced to candidacy upon successful completion of the written and oral qualifying examinations.
Every doctoral degree program requires the completion of an approved dissertation that demonstrates the student's ability to perform original, independent research and constitutes a distinct contribution to knowledge in the principal field of study.
Final Oral Examination (Defense of the Dissertation)
Required of all students in the program.
Maximum allowable time for the attainment of the degree is 20 quarters of enrollment or eight years. This limitation includes quarters enrolled in previous graduate study at a UC campus prior to admission to the doctoral degree program and leaves of absence. However, the approved normative time-to-degree is eighteen quarters (six years).
Termination of Graduate Study and Appeal of Termination
A student who fails to meet the above requirements may be recommended for termination of graduate study. A graduate student may be disqualified from continuing in the graduate program for a variety of reasons. The most common is failure to maintain the minimum cumulative grade point average (3.00) required by the Academic Senate to remain in good standing (some programs require a higher grade point average). Other examples include failure of examinations, lack of timely progress toward the degree and poor performance in core courses. Probationary students (those with cumulative grade point averages below 3.00) are subject to immediate dismissal upon the recommendation of their department. University guidelines governing termination of graduate students, including the appeal procedure, are outlined in Standards and Procedures for Graduate Study at UCLA.
Special Departmental or Program Policy
In addition to the standard reasons outlined above, a student may be recommended for termination for failure to complete the required course work within seven quarters of matriculation.
In addition to the standard reasons outlined above, a student may be recommended for termination for failure to maintain a 3.00 grade point average for two consecutive quarters following matriculation into the doctoral program; a second failure of any written qualifying examination in the major or minor fields; a second failure of either oral examination; failure to receive a Satisfactory grade for two consecutive quarters in Epidemiology 599; or exceeding enrollment time limits.
A student may appeal a recommendation for termination first to the departmental chair, then to the Associate Dean of Student Affairs, then to the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and finally to the dean of the school.