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Class and Degree Requirements

Program Requirements:
  1. An admitted doctoral student is strongly encouraged to identify a mentor by the end of the first semester in the program and must have a mentor by the end of their second semester in the program. The GPD  will function as a mentor to first year doctoral students unless they have already designated a faculty mentor and approve the student’s courses.
  2. At the end of every academic year, students must participate in the HCC PhD Annual Review. 
  3. After completing three offerings of the HCC 810 reading seminar but before the end of the student’s sixth semester of studies, the student must complete the Comprehensive Exam.
  4. Ph.D. students who have successfully completed 30 graduate credits at UMBC, are eligible to earn an MS in HCC from UMBC.
  5. UMBC Graduate School policy requires that PhD students reach candidacy (propose dissertation) by their 5th year. After reaching candidacy, PhD students must graduate within 4 years.
  6. Doctoral students are expected to attend all research seminars, doctoral proposals and dissertation defenses, and any colloquia with guest speakers as part of their learning experience.
Ph.D. Course Requirements (45 credit hours):
Required Foundation courses (9 credit hours):
  • HCC 810 Reading Seminar: to be completed as a series of three one-credit seminars during the first three semesters of the student’s doctoral studies.
  • Two Methodology Courses: Most students would take IS 804 (Advanced Quantitative Methods for IS Research: Statistical Learning) and IS 805 (Advanced Field Research Methods), but other courses may be approved by their advisor as appropriate.
Required Core courses (12 credit hours):
  • HCC 629 – Fundamentals of Human-Centered Computing (Offered Fall and Spring)
  • HCC 710 – Graphic Design for Interactive Systems (Offered in Fall)
    • Prerequisite or Corequisite: HCC 629
  • HCC 729 – Human-Centered Design (Offered in Spring)
    • Prerequisite or Corequisite: HCC 629 and HCC 636
  • HCC 760  – Human-Computer Interaction (Offered in Fall)
    • Prerequisite of HCC 629 waived for PhD students
    • Recommended in first semester.
Advanced Required Core courses (24 credit hours):
Doctoral Dissertation research (recommendations for GRAD 601, HCC 899, 898)
  • After PhD students have taken all of their required coursework, the following options are available to them to fulfill their registration needs until graduation.
  • GRAD 601 – Graduate School Assistantship (5 credits)
    • Students who are funded by the university (i.e. GA) must sign up for this course for 5 credit hours per semester. This is a non-tuition class.
    • International students can also sign up for 5 credits of GRAD 601 to maintain full-time status.
  • HCC 898 – Pre-Candidacy Doctoral Dissertation Research (variable credit hours)
    • Students who are pre-proposal (candidacy) should enroll in this course to indicate research hours.
    • We recommend pre-candidacy students to sign up for 3 credits of 898 after they have completed their coursework.
  • HCC 899 – Doctoral Dissertation Research (variable credit hours)
    • After candidacy, students must enroll for at least 2 semesters of 899 and continue to enroll in 899 each semester until their dissertation defense.