Rolling to a PhD

The Department of Fisheries and Wildlife offers thesis programs leading to MS and PhD degrees in both Fisheries and Wildlife sciences.

Students completing their MS degree in the Fisheries and Wildlife Department at Oregon State University can continue for a PhD; students can also switch into a PhD program without completing a Master's degree first. Changing programs always requires the approval of the student's graduate committee and the FWCS Graduate Committee, and both paths to the PhD are treated as a new application. Students will be asked for an updated CV and statement of purpose that explains their desire to transition to a doctoral program. If the Master's is not completed, students are expected to have completed similiar level work (e.g. - Undergradaute Honors Thesis, publication as primary author, or successful NSF GRFP award).

The Major Professor should provide evidence that the student is prepared to tackle the doctorate by providing a letter requesting the program change with details on the work already accomplished, their confidence the student will finish in a reasonable period of time, and that there is a funding plan in place for 2 additional years. This letter of request should include an explanation of why the master's will not be completed first if that is the case.

If the student is entering a PhD program without first completing their Master's degree, the student should be prepared to complete a second research review based on the PhD proposal even if they have previously completed a research review while in their Master's program. They also should be aware of the OSU Graduate School's requirement for PhD students submit their Program of Study by their 5th term. The graduate school will count all previous enrolled terms, including summer term, in that count and will block registration if the program is not completed.

To begin the process the Major Professor should contact the FWCS Graduate Program Coordinator.