All students are required to apply at least 12 credit hours and no more than 24 credit hours of dissertation credit to their degree programs. Most students will apply 24 credit hours of dissertation credit to their degrees, but students who take extra elective courses will see a reduction in the total number of dissertation hours that can be applied to their degrees. A student can take more than the required number of dissertation hours, but can only apply the number of credit hours indicated in the Program of Study.

Dissertation credit includes Dissertation Proposal Research credit (ECON 998) and Dissertation Research credit (ECON 999). Students may take any combination of ECON 998 and ECON 999 to complete the required dissertation credit hours, but all students must take at least 3 credit hours of ECON 999. A student cannot both propose and defend a dissertation during the same semester.

Students who have completed their course work and are enrolled in dissertation credit only are considered full-time with a course load of 6 credit hours.