Graduate students earn a Ph.D. through independent research in collaboration with one or more faculty members. A modest amount of graded coursework ensures a thorough grounding in the fundamentals of the chosen field, as well as breadth of knowledge in the chemical sciences. The median time to complete all requirements for the Ph.D. is about five years. Students are required to pass oral examinations in their area of specialization. There are no pre-entrance or qualifying exams.