The Doctor of Philosophy with a major in plant, soil and environmental sciences and concentrations in crop sciences, horticulture, plant breeding, plant molecular genetics, and weed science is offered under a multi-departmental doctoral program. Two departments participate – Plant Sciences and the soils faculty in Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science. Another concentration within the plant, soil and environmental sciences major is environmental and soil sciences.
Students must select a formal concentration as a focus of study. We recognize that modern research approaches in plant sciences often overlap. Students may specialize in one or more approaches, including plant biotechnology, molecular biology, breeding, genetics, physiology, ecology, culture and management. Research approaches may be applied to model plant systems, public horticulture, turfgrass, weeds, or woody ornamental plants, as well as fruit, vegetable, cereal, grain, or fiber crops.
Plant Molecular Genetics
- Applicants to the PhD program normally will have completed a M.S. degree with thesis before beginning the doctoral program.
- To the Office of Graduate Admissions submit an online application (with non-refundable application fee), official transcripts, and scores from the general portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and TOEFL or IELTS, if applicable.
- The online application procedure will direct the applicant to submit
- an updated resume or CV,
- a short statement of professional goals including reasons for applying to Plant Sciences,
- answers to a professional bio-sketch self-assessment, and
- contact information for three evaluators who will provide letters of reference
- References should be capable of assessing the applicant’s suitability for graduate work in plant sciences.
- Final admission is contingent upon the applicant contacting and obtaining a commitment from a graduate research faculty member to serve as his/her graduate mentor (major professor).
- Students must be fully committed to their graduate program, are expected to participate in departmental activities, including seminars, outreach functions, and professional development activities, and assume full responsibility for knowledge and compliance with rules and regulations of the Graduate Council and Department.
- Retention and continuing access to graduate assistantship and stipend support may be dependent on the student maintaining a 3.00 cumulative grade point average in graduate courses taken at UT and completing other milestones in a timely manner (e.g., forming a committee, completion of coursework, submitting a research proposal, making progress in project or research objectives, and dissertation preparation).
- Dismissal: In addition to failure to meet UT Graduate School expectations leading to academic probation, other reasons for dismissal include
- failure to make adequate progress towards other degree requirements (e.g., research project, dissertation preparation),
- academic dishonesty (e.g., plagiarism, falsification of data), or
- other forms of gross misconduct as identified by the Office of Equity and Diversity, Human Resources, Dean of Students’ Office, Hilltopics, or Graduate Council.
- Dismissal will be accomplished by written notice to the student with a copy to the Graduate School.
Credit Hours Required
- 72 graduate credit hours beyond the Bachelor’s
- 48 graduate credit hours beyond the Master’s
Additional Course Requirements
- An understanding of research ethics is also required. This departmentally-enforced requirement may be achieved through either:
- Coursework (e.g., PLSC 525 /ANSC 525 /CEM 525 ; BCMB 614 ; PSYC 660 ) or
- Knowledge gained via online (CITI RCR) training, as evidenced by presenting a valid CITI RCR certificate to the Graduate Director upon submission of the Application to Candidacy form.
- CITI RCR training should be completed by the end of the third academic semester.
- For research involving human subjects, CITI IRB certification may also be required.
- Students undertaking laboratory research and projects involving chemical use/exposure should complete online Chemical Safety Training by the end of their first or second academic semester.