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Ph.D. Degree Milestones

The following are milestones that should be used as a guide to the successful completion of a doctoral program for a student entering post-BS degree. Please also refer to sample timeline charts for other cases (MD/PhD or PhD post-MS degree):

Charts showing sample timeline and milestones: PhD (post-BS); PhD (post-MS); PhD (MD/PhD).

Prior to First Registration

  • Meet with faculty advisor and Graduate Programs office for advice on possible courses to take in the first semester.
  • Register for courses through myPurdue.

During First Semester

  • Satisfy Graduate School admission conditions as outlined in your admission letter.

During First Two Semesters

  • Complete two Critical Literature Analysis(CLA) / BME seminar courses, one in the first fall semester and one in the first spring semester. These courses will help prepare you for writing the Qualifying Literature Assessment (QLA), which will be due in August of your second year. The CLA and BME Seminar courses are linked in myPurdue so you will need to register for both at the same time. PhD students are required to successfully complete four CLA / BME Seminar courses as part of your degree requirements. Two of these should be completed in the first year and the other two may be taken later in your degree program. The expectation is that at least one of these will be in an area outside of your research.

During Second Fall Semester

  • Submit documents for Phase I (QLA) of the PQP by deadline (Tuesday prior to start of classes for your second year) and successfully pass no later than early spring semester of your second year.
  • Complete Phase II (POS) of the Ph.D. Qualifying Process (PQP) by November 15 of your second year. Be mindful of the PhD curriculum requirements when planning your coursework.

Before Completion of 3rd year

Prior to Final Semester

  • Review your plan of study to ensure that all degree requirements are met.
  • Discuss your future plans with your faculty advisor and the BME Graduate Program Coordinator.
  • Review instructions on scheduling the final exam to see if you have any questions in advance of final semester.
  • Review Purdue graduation deadlines to see if you have any questions in advance of final semester.  

During Final Semester