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Doctoral Program Assessment

The Graduate School carried out an assessment of Ohio State’s doctoral programs over the 2007-2008 academic year. This assessment continues to provide a baseline for efforts across Ohio State that focus on creating high-quality graduate degree programs and excellent experiences for our graduate students.

The assessment was undertaken in partnership with the college deans. The doctoral programs were classified by indicators of quality from high quality to disinvestment or elimination.

Three premises guided the assessment:

  • High-quality doctoral programs are required for Ohio State to reach the top ranks of public research universities;

  • Admitting and producing students of the highest quality is the most important priority for PhD programs; and

  • The PhD is a distinctive degree. Its purpose is to prepare students to carry out independent research or scholarship in academic or other positions that require such skills and abilities.

Doctoral Program Assessment and Plan (Graduate School, April 2008)

Results from doctoral assessment

Doctoral assessment update 2008-2010 (June 2010)

Year 2: 2009-2010

In 2009-10, the Graduate School reports that yields are up of students awarded Graduate School fellowships with enhanced stipends (from programs designated as high-quality or strong). Significant merging has occurred among departments and graduate programs in Arts and Sciences (especially the former College of Biological Sciences), the College of Engineering, the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, and the College of Veterinary Medicine. A program council has been established to move ahead with the recommendations made by the task forces on the environmental sciences and life sciences. The Graduate School is developing a tool to assist graduate programs with regular collection of doctoral placement information.

Year 1: 2008-2009

On the university-level, recruitment of high-quality graduate students was bolstered by increasing stipends by $3,000 for four years for Graduate School fellowship winners in programs designated as high-quality and strong. The task forces for life sciences and environmental sciences were established.

College-level actions included the following:all graduate programs in the reassess/restructure category were evaluated by their home colleges; the College of Nursing’s Doctor of Nursing Practice was approved by the Board of Regents in spring 2008; and action was taken on all the programs recommended for disinvestment or elimination. Specifically, Comprehensive Vocational Education has been deactivated; the Rehabilitation Services track has been closed; the Technology Education track has been closed ; Soil Science has been converted to a track in Environment and Natural Resources ; and Welding Engineering has joined Materials Science and Engineering.

Related documents

Members, Doctoral Assessment Review Committee

Ohio State Doctoral Assessment Effort Featured in the Chronicle of Higher Education