The IEOR Department offers two Ph.D. programs in (1) Industrial Engineering; and (2) Operations Research. The requirements for the Ph.D. in industrial engineering and operations research are identical. Both programs require the student to complete the qualifying procedure and submit and defend a dissertation based on the candidate's original research, conducted under the supervision of the faculty. The dissertation work may be theoretical or computational or both.

The qualifying procedure consists of three components, including: (1) complete the four Ph.D. core courses during the first year with at most one grade of (B+) or better; (2) conduct research during the first summer, and give a talk based on this research at the beginning of the third semester; and (3) submit a research paper at the end of the third semester. Students in the doctoral programs are reviewed by the Ph.D. committee after each of the three components. A student who fails to complete component (1) may be asked to withdraw from the Ph.D. program at the end of the first year. A student who successfully completes component (1) will typically move on to conduct research during the first summer under the advisement by a faculty member in the Department. In the rare instance the Ph.D. committee is not satisfied with a student's performance in components (2) and (3), they may be asked to withdraw from the program at the end of the second year.

Doctoral students are also required to select a concentration for their studies and complete a certain amount of course work in one of the following fields: applied probability, mathematical programming, financial engineering, or supply chain management and logistics. Doctoral candidates must obtain a minimum of 60 points of formal course credit beyond the bachelor’s degree. A master’s degree from an accredited institution may be accepted as equivalent to 30 points. A minimum of 30 points beyond the master’s degree must be earned while in residence in the doctoral program. Detailed information regarding the requirements for the doctoral degree may be obtained in the Department office and on IEOR website.