The final examination for PhD candidates, otherwise known as the dissertation defense (B exam), will be an oral examination of the dissertation.
In compliance with Graduate School rules and procedures, the B exam is to be scheduled at least seven calendar days in advance via the Schedule of Exam form. During the examination, graduate faculty other than the special committee may question the candidate. Determination of whether the student passes or fails and provisions for re-examination are the same as for the A exam.
A student must complete two semesters of registration between the A exam and the B exam; thus, the B exam will normally take place one to two years after the A exam. All requirements for the PhD degree, including filing the dissertation, are expected to be completed within five years after the student completes the required six total registered semesters, or seven years after the first registration in the Graduate School, whichever is sooner (see Time-to-Degree Limits policy).