Food Systems Ph.D.

All students must meet the Requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy Degree

Overview

The PhD in Food Systems combines a comprehensive investigation of food systems and a commitment to developing methods for solving the current problems of the food system through a cohort intensive experience.  Every year, the food systems cohort will work together to address problems and devise potential solutions.  Students then move towards disciplinary depth and mastery by designing a course of study with a dissertation committee and developing a research proposal.  Students will also engage in independent research.

Specific Requirements

REQUIREMENTS FOR ADMISSION TO GRADUATE STUDIES FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY

There are two ways for a potential PhD candidate to pursue this program. First, a student with a BA/BS can apply to the PhD program. Second, a student can apply to the PhD after completing an MA or MS in an allied field, either at the University of Vermont or at another institution.

Minimum requirements include:

  • GPA of 3.00 or higher
  • Completion of the GRE with satisfactory results in the general (aptitude) portion.  If you have received a Master's Degree from an accredited institution, you may request to have the GRE waived. Contact the Program Coordinator for more information.
  • TOEFL or IELTS exam scores must be submitted if you are an international student.
  • Completion of a college-level statistics course. If this information is not clearly listed on a college transcript, you will need to provide additional documentation as evidence that you have fulfilled this requirement.
  • A letter of support from a Food Systems Faculty member who agrees to serve as primary advisor during enrollment in the PhD Program.

MINIMUM DEGREE REQUIREMENTS

75 credits, including a minimum of 30 hours of graded coursework and 20 credits of supervised dissertation research.

Required Courses:
FS 345Food Systems, Soc & Policy3
FS 340Food Systems, Science & Policy3
FS 351Professional Development Sem.1
or PSS 301 Professional Skills Colloquium
FS 355Ethics and the Food System3
FS 491Doctoral Dissertation Researchmiminum of 20 credits
EDLP 449Dissertation Writing Seminar3
Students must also take a minimum of 9 credits of methodology coursework in consultation with advisor that represent a variety of methodological and research design approaches, such as FS 335, CDAE 351, EDLP 459, and CSYS 302. Consult with advisor for complete list.
Students must also take FS 365 - Issues and Solutions Seminar two times during their course of study. This is a one credit seminar.

COMPREHENSIVE EXAMINATION

The comprehensive examination is a tool to evaluate the progress of each student and ensure that they are prepared to proceed toward the doctorate degree.

Phase 1 is an oral exam that tests the student’s ability to read, analyze and synthesize scholarly knowledge across disciplines as well as to design a research-based response to a specific food systems issue or problem.

Phase 2 includes two steps: a dissertation pre-proposal and proposal submission. The form, content and timeline will be explained to the student by their advisor and will follow guidelines set forth by the Project and Thesis committee, in collaboration with the student’s dissertation committee.

REQUIREMENTS FOR ADVANCEMENT TO CANDIDACY FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY

Maintain a 3.00 GPA in designated first and second year courses and successful completion of the comprehensive exam.