Nine credits in a secondary area of study that supports the student’s program and extends her or his research interest is required. In addition, students are required to take 6 credits of electives in nursing or other disciplines, which supports the student’s dissertation or career goals. These 6 credits can be used to complete a minor or program certificate, gain more substantive knowledge, take additional research methods courses, or take courses in higher education.
Because of the rich resources of this campus, courses are available in such fields as psychology, sociology, anthropology, epidemiology, health policy and health administration, exercise physiology, nutrition and physiology. If a minor is declared, it must be approved by the School of Nursing and the minor program and must involve at least 15 credits. The choice of a minor will be determined with advisors from the major field and minor department with the requirements of the Graduate School in mind. A secondary area of study is an alternative to the minor and can be a cluster of 9 credits from one or more departments. Minors and secondary areas of study are approved by the advisory committee and the Director of the PhD and Post-Doctoral Programs in the School of Nursing. In addition, students may choose to complete a program certificate in a specialty area. Courses for a program certificate must be approved by the program offering the certificate.
Procedures for setting up a minor or secondary area of study are outlined below. The student is required to seek advice on the choice of the secondary area of study, minor, or program certificate, with her or his advisor in the School of Nursing. For the minor, the student is required to submit an approved Minor Declaration Form (see Graduate School Handbook) to the Graduate School:
- Verify with the Director of the PhD and Post-Doctoral Programs that the minor has been established. If the minor is not established, the Director of the PhD and Post-Doctoral Programs and the student’s advisor will attend to the administrative activities to attempt to establish the minor.
- Contact (with help from the School of Nursing advisor) the Director of Graduate Studies in the minor school or department to identify an appropriate advisor in the minor for the student.
- Meet with the minor advisor and prepare an academic program for minor studies.
- Obtain approval of the academic program for minor studies from the School of Nursing advisor.
- Submit the approved program to the Director of the PhD and Post-Doctoral Programs in the School of Nursing for preparation as a formal document. The Director of the PhD and Post-Doctoral Programs in the School of Nursing must approve the program and sign the Minor Declaration Form before submitting for approval and signature by the Director of Graduate Studies in the school or department of the minor.
For a secondary area of study, the student is required to:
- Identify (with help from the School of Nursing advisor) one faculty member from one department in the secondary area courses to serve on the dissertation committee.
- Ask the faculty member to serve as the “outside member” of the dissertation committee. If faculty in other departments or schools have questions about expectations for the outside committee member, the student may ask her or his advisor or the Director of the PhD and Post-Doctoral Programs in Nursing to explain the nature of the commitment.
- Complete the School of Nursing Plan of Study form with her or his advisor to identify the three secondary area courses. All courses in the secondary area must be at the graduate level (i.e. courses numbered 600 or above), preferably doctoral level. The course number, title and course description are to be submitted as the academic program for the secondary area.
If there is any change in the academic program, it is the student’s responsibility to notify the Director of the PhD and Post-Doctoral Programs before seeking candidacy.