Doctor of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering

The principal objectives of the Ph.D. program are to provide students an opportunity to reach a thorough understanding of the scientific and engineering principles underlying their fields of interest, to develop the ability to apply these principles creatively to engineering problems, and to develop research skills.

General Requirements

At least one 6000 or 7000-level course in thermal sciences and one in solid mechanics areas are required. All courses taken for graduate credit in this program shall be selected from those listed in the Graduate Bulletin and the choices are subject to the approval of the advisors.

Curriculum Requirements

Courses Credits
Minimum total semester hours of graduate credit above the baccalaureate level including at least one
Thermal/Fluid course at 7000 level or above and one Solid Mechanics course at 7000 level or above
72 hours
Minimum semester hours of research and dissertation (including master's degree thesis) 24 hours
Minimum semester hours of graduate course work and independent study distributed as follows: 42 hours
  • Minimum semester hours in Mechanical Engineering
  • Minimum semester hours outside Mechanical Engineering including 6 semester hours of 6000-level or 7000-level Mathematics
  • Maximum semester hours of independent study

24 hours
12 hours
6 hours

Maximum semester hours of 6000-level courses 15 hours

Students may be required to complete prerequisite undergraduate courses without graduate credit, resulting in a program of more than 72 semester hours. Not more than 12 hours of transfer credit beyond the master's degree from an accredited institution may be counted toward the course requirements and must be approved by the mechanical engineering graduate coordinator.

Other Requirements

     Language and Residence. There is no foreign language requirement for the Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering. At least two consecutive semesters in residence at The University of Tulsa as a full-time student are required.

    Advisory Committee. Students in the Ph.D. program will be advised initially by the mechanical engineering graduate coordinator. The student should select a general research area and a research advisor or co-advisors for the dissertation within two semesters following enrollment in the program. The advisor or co-advisors, after consultation with the student, recommend the other members of the advisory committee to the Graduate Dean. The advisory committee must have at least four graduate faculty members, two of whom must be from outside the discipline of concentration, and one of whom may be a qualified expert in the research area from outside the university. The student must present a research proposal for approval by the advisory committee before completion of the second year of study. The advisory committee approves the rest of the student's course work, reviews progress, approves program changes and the dissertation topic, recommends the student for candidacy upon completion of requirements, and administers the final dissertation oral examination.

    Qualifying Examinations. A student must take a qualifying examination during the semester after completing nine hours toward the Ph.D. degree. If the student fails the examination, it can be taken a second time in the following semester. Examinations are given each year during the fall and spring semesters and are administered by the mechanical engineering graduate program advisor. The Mechanical Engineering graduate faculty determine whether a student passes or fails the qualifying examinations.

    Candidacy. A student must apply for candidacy after a minimum of 45 hours of course work have been successfully completed, the qualifying examination has been passed, and the research proposal has been approved.

    Dissertation. Each candidate must write a dissertation on the results of his/her research. The dissertation must demonstrate the candidate's abilities to independently investigate the area of interest and must contribute to some field of science or engineering. The dissertation must follow the Graduate School's recommended procedures for submission to the student's advisory committee, and before final typing or reproduction must be presented to the full advisory committee for examination and review. The dissertation must be microfilmed and published in Dissertation Abstracts. The dissertation is graded on a pass-fail basis.

    Final Oral Examination. Each candidate must pass a final oral examination before the advisory committee. The examination will consist of a public defense of the dissertation, the general field of the dissertation, and other parts of the program selected by the committee. The advisory committee recommends the candidate to the Graduate Dean for the Ph.D. degree upon successful completion of the final oral examination and acceptance of the dissertation. Passing grades must be obtained in all the dissertation hours to fulfill degree requirements.