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Students are required to prepare and defend a dissertation proposal based on their proposed research. The students will present a formal written dissertation proposal that includes details of the research questions, theoretical framework, a literature review, the methods and measures chosen to answer the research questions and details of how the collected data will be analyzed. The proposal will be presented and defended in an oral hearing before the dissertation committee, and revised as necessary prior to beginning work. If appropriate, Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval to conduct the research will be secured. On satisfactory completion of the dissertation proposal and completion of 30 graduate credits at Stony Brook University, a recommendation for advancement towards candidacy will be forwarded to the graduate school.

Independent Research: 18 credits minimally to include at least 12 credits in CSM 699: Dissertation Research on Campus. Students who have Breadth and depth requirements wavied will have a commensurate increase in their independent research credits.