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Graduation Requirements

M.S. Graduation Requirements

Performance Requirements

No credits that are reported with a grade lower than C are acceptable. To qualify for graduation, the student must have a grade-point average of at least 3.0 based on all courses acceptable for graduate credit for which the student has received a grade from WVU.

Program Requirements

A plan of study must be jointly prepared and approved by the student and all members of the student's advisory and examining committee (AEC), the department chair, and the dean or dean's designee. The plan must meet the following requirements:

  • The program study leading to a masters thesis must contain a minimum of 24 hours of coursework and 6 hours of research (PNGE 697).
  • The program study leading to a comprehensive problem report must contain a minimum of 30 hours of coursework and 3 hours of research (PNGE 697).

Students who do not hold a baccalaureate degree in petroleum & natural gas engineering are required to take a set of undergraduate petroleum & natural gas engineering courses above and beyond the coursework requirements.


All students are required to pass a final oral examination, administered by their AEC, covering both the thesis or problem report (depending on the program selected) and related course material.

Ph.D. Graduation Requirements

Performance Requirements

To remain in good standing, the student must have a grade of B or better for all the courses scheduled in his/her Ph.D. course of study.

Program Requirements

In addition to the University and Engineering Ph.D. Program requirements, the PNGE Ph.D. students must satisfy the followings requirements:

  • A minimum of 54 hours of course work and 30 hours of independent research above and beyond a bachelor's degree; or 30 hours of course work and 24 hours of independent research beyond a M.S. degree.
  • Successful completion of a qualifying examination
  • Successful completion of a candidacy examination
  • An approved dissertation.


The following are the Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering requirements for Ph.D. candidacy:

  • Completion of all the coursework.
  • Successful completion of Qualifying Exam.
  • Successful completion of Candidacy Exam.

Qualifying Exam

This is a written exam to evaluate the student's fundamental and advanced petroleum and natural gas engineering knowledge. The student can take the qualifying exam anytime during their graduate studies but must pass the exam no later than one semester after completion of the required courses. A student who wishes to take the exam must apply prior to the deadline announced by the Graduate Coordinator each semester. The exam is prepared and graded by a team of PNGE faculty that is chaired by the PNGE Graduate Coordinator. The student will be informed in writing by the Graduate Coordinator of the results of the exam. When a student fails the examination, he/she may appeal to Department through the Graduate Coordinator for re-examination. The exam can only be repeated once.

Candidacy Exam

The Candidacy Exam is an oral exam designed to examine the student's overall ability to engage in high-level research. Only the Ph.D. students who have passed the qualifying exam can participate in candidacy exam. The student must pass the candidacy exam no later than one year after completion of the all the course work. The student must prepare and submit a written proposal outlining of the proposed Ph.D. research work to all AEC member at least three weeks prior to the scheduled exam. The student will defend the proposal during an oral exam given by the AEC. The students cannot be considered as having passed the candidacy exam if there is more than one committee member disapproving. The student will be informed in writing by the Graduate Coordinator of the results of the exam. When a student fails, he/she may appeal to AEC through the Graduate Coordinator for re-examination. The candidacy exam can only be repeated once.

Final Exam

At the completion of the dissertation research, the candidate must prepare a dissertation and defend it orally before AEC. The candidate must arrange through his/her major advisor to have a formal defense of the dissertation. The time and location of the exam will be announced by the Graduate Coordinator. No more than one member may disapprove the dissertation, for the student to pass. The dissertation must be prepared in accordance with the guidelines set forth by the University as described in the Graduate Catalog and Statler College Ph.D. Program Guidelines.