Qualifying Exam FAQ
Q: When is the qualifying exam offered?
A: The AE qualifying exam is offered twice per year - the week before classes begin in January and around the beginning of classes in August.
Q: When do I have to take the Qualifying Exam?
A: Students in the direct PhD program must take the Qualifying Exam no later than the third offering after matriculation. Students in the regular PhD program must take the Qualifying Exam no later than the second offering after matriculation. Example: a student who matriculates in Fall 2021, must take the exam on or before Fall 2022 (if regular PhD program) or Spring 2023 (if direct PhD program). You may take the exam earlier, if desired, with advisor permission.
Q: How do I sign up to take the Qualifying Exam?
A: An email with information about the qualifying exam will be sent to all graduate students in early fall for the January offering and in spring for the August offering. Students interested in taking the qualifying exam will need to reply to the email and include a list of all coursework taken since the B.S. degree.
Q: Are copies of old exams available for study purposes?
A: Yes. They are located in the main department office. You may take the file containing old exams for your area (AFMCP, ACDS or SMM) and make copies of those exams which you want to study from.
Q: Can I learn who else is taking the exam so that we can study together?
A: Unfortunately, no. The names of students taking the qualifying exam cannot be released, even to the faculty, until after the exam.
Q: Are calculators/tables/lists of equations/etc. permitted?
A: You will receive a letter from the Chair of the Qualifying Exam in your area which will detail what is acceptable.
Q: When will I learn the results of the exam?
A: The department tries to notify all students of the results no later than two weeks after the exam.