Why a D.Sc. (Doctor of Science)?

The D.Sc. at the University of South Alabama is a professional doctorate. It requires peer-reviewed, high quality research which culminates in a doctoral thesis. The thesis is publically defended before your committee and open to the broader community.

The required work emphasizes applied research and should:

  1. Provide a unique interdisciplinary doctoral program that meets the needs of industry in the area of systems engineering.
  2. Prepare graduates for leadership positions in applied research that require the use of systems engineering tools to solve complex engineering problems in local and regional industries.
  3. Capitalize on the opportunities that result from the interactions of a research university with unique clusters of industries in the marine and chemical fields with common research problems in systems engineering, and a shortage of employees with applied training at the doctoral level.

Therefore, it must make a significant contribution to the field of systems engineering, while being based in engineering practice rather than theory.

Unlike traditional doctoral programs, there will be significant involvement from industrial partners in providing doctoral candidates and in selecting topics of research study for doctoral dissertations.  Qualified engineers in local companies will be included on graduate committees of the doctoral students in those cases where the research topic is associated with an industry problem.  A common curriculum for all doctoral students in the program will avoid the traditional departmental barriers that exist in more traditional doctoral programs.