Skip to Main Content
Maxwell School
Maxwell / Department of Public Administration

Time to Complete 

It is impossible to specify the precise length of time needed to complete the Ph.D. program due to the many variables associated with completing the degree requirements.  Such variables include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Number of credits allowed for previous graduate study
  • Whether there are course deficiencies relative to the requirements for the Maxwell MPA degree 
  • The number of credit hours completed during each academic term
  • The time required to prepare for the qualifying exam and to complete a dissertation

In general however, a student who receives credit for 36 hours completed prior to entry into the Ph.D. program and who has no prerequisite course deficiencies will complete all coursework requirements within two academic years. The length of time necessary to complete the dissertation will vary but typically takes 1 to 2 years upon approval of the dissertation proposal.  Recent graduates have averaged 4.5 years to complete the Ph.D. program.