Qualifying Exams and Policy Concerning Satisfactory Progress
Passing the qualifying examination is required to become a Ph.D. candidate. Admission to the graduate program does NOT guarantee admission to the Ph.D. program.
The qualifying exam consists of two written components: an Algebra Examination and an Analysis Examination. Candidates will be deemed to have passed the written part of the qualifying examination only after passing BOTH the Algebra and Analysis components. Students also have to pass all Year 1 courses. The exams will be based upon Year 1 classes as described here. The Analysis exams will be based upon Math 8420-8421, and the Algebra exams will be based upon Math 8410-8411. For sample questions, please contact the teachers of these courses.
Syllabuses: Algebra I & II Syllabus, Real Analysis I & II Syllabus
Both exams are offered twice yearly: in May soon after the end of the Spring Semester, and retakes in August just before the start of the Fall Semester.
Students with a master’s degree in mathematics will be allowed two academic years from admission to the graduate program to pass both components. Students without a master’s degree in mathematics will be allowed three years from admission to the graduate program to pass both components. Exceptions can be made with the recommendation of the Director of Graduate Studies and the approval of a majority of the Doctoral Faculty. For purposes of eligibility, an exam is considered to be part of the semester immediately preceding it.
Satisfactory progress towards the degree: Before passing the qualifying exams, a student who is continuously enrolled in 9 credit hours of approved courses and with a B average or better is deemed to be making satisfactory progress. After passing the qualifying exams, a student with continuous enrollment in 6 credit hours of approved courses, with a B average or better and a supporting letter from his or her advisor is deemed to be making satisfactory progress. (Note: The Coordinating Board of Higher Education considers 9 hours to be full-time graduate student standing in the Fall and Winter semesters, and fewer hours to be part-time standing. Some students may need to maintain 9 hour full-time status to remain eligible for certain graduate fellowships, or deferral of repayment for certain undergraduate student loans, or discounts on certain insurance policies.)
(Note: after passing the comprehensive exams, only two credit hours of approved courses are required for satisfactory progress: https://gradschool.missouri.edu/admissions/eligibility-process/.)
Previous Exams (since May 2016)
Studying these exams have limited value, since the style of the exams may change from year to year. It is strongly recommended that you contact the teachers of the preparation course for the year you want to take it, and get their study guide.