The Robotics PhD program of study comprises a minimum of 108 credits, including at least 48 credits of coursework and 36 credits of Thesis (ROB 603). The balance may either constitute additional coursework and/or thesis credits or come from other sources such as research, reading and conference, etc. At least 50% of the course credits should represent stand-alone graduate courses (500 level or above). The remaining credits may include the 500 component of 400/500-level courses. Of the coursework credits, 16 must come from approved “core” courses.
The intent of the Robotics core is to ensure each program of study both specializes in robotics, and contains sufficient breadth. To that end, the four-course core comprises one introductory course, one hands-on robotics course, one autonomy course, and one fundamental control/dynamics course:
Timeline of a PhD in Robotics
The major milestones in completing a PhD in robotics at Oregon State are listed below. For more information about these milestones, please contact the graduate advisor (Lynn Paul).
Selecting a major professor
Your major professor will serve as your primary advisor throughout your graduate program. While we assign all incoming MIME graduate students an interim advisor, it is your responsibility to select your major professor and assemble your committee as soon as possible. Your PhD program of study, which must be filed with the Graduate School prior to the sixth term of enrollment, requires your committee's approval.
The purpose of the PhD qualifying exam is to assess students’ research skills (their ability to analyze, interpret, and communicate fundamental scientific, mathematical, and engineering concepts) for the purpose of determining their aptitude for the PhD program. The examination also includes a diagnostic function to highlight potential weaknesses in the students’ background that can be addressed through additional coursework or independent study.
Qualifying exam format
The qualifying exam consists of:
Qualifying exam timeline
The qualifying exam is conducted every Winter term. Students entering the program with an MS degree must take the qualifying exam in their second year in graduate school. Students entering the program with a BS degree must take the qualifying exam in their third year in graduate school.
Program of Study meeting
After passing the qualifying examination and establishing a PhD committee, students must convene a program meeting at which all committee members (including the Graduate Council Representative) are present. The purpose of this meeting is for you to present your program of study. At this meeting you will also present an approximate timeline for PhD requirement completion (coursework completion, preliminary exam, and final oral exam).
The preliminary examination evaluates a PhD candidate's research methodology, experimental plan, and interpretation of preliminary results (if appropriate). The purpose of the exam is to allow the committee to aid the candidate in planning and implementing the highest quality thesis.
Preliminary exam format
The preliminary exam consists of:
Preliminary exam timeline
The preliminary exam must be scheduled through the Graduate School using their Exam Scheduling Form, and exam takers must be formally enrolled (for a minimum of 3 credits) during the term in which the exam takes place.
Final Oral Examination
After completing all required coursework and thesis credits and submitting the pretext pages of your thesis to the Graduate School, you must schedule your final oral examination through the Graduate School using their Exam Scheduling Form. Also, you must be formally enrolled (for a minimum of 3 credits) during the term in which the exam takes place.
For the most recent university guidelines and requirements, please consult the Graduate School.