Feb 25, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Information Science PhD

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Our doctoral program in information science will give you the opportunity to develop sophisticated quantitative and qualitative research skills to equip you to delve into the complex information problems facing humanity and contemporary organizations. As human interaction and cultural expression continue to be facilitated digitally, the workings of digital technologies, their impact and their uses need to be understood. Our doctoral degree in information science will provide the opportunity to study these issues in depth. The information field is changing rapidly, and offering myriad opportunities for future scholars of information science.

Program Coursework

Master’s Degree (30-36 credits)

Upon acceptance into the doctoral program, you are allowed to transfer credits from your master’s degree program.

Core Courses (14-18 credits)

Electives in Discipline (9 credits)

Specialization will occur through elective courses and, where appropriate, independent study elective courses.

Qualifying Requirements

You will work with your advisor to assemble a dissertation committee conforming to UB graduate guidelines. The committee composition must reflect the intellectual diversity of the Department of Information Science, and must be approved by the director of the PhD program. The committee may include one external member.

You will decide on a research topic and produce a short research proposal (dissertation prospectus) that includes the research questions to be pursued; a short literature review; a description of one or more possible theoretical frameworks that will inform the research; and a summary of the methods expected to be applied. Your research proposal is expected to be approximately 20 pages in length.

You will pass an oral examination on the background knowledge required to conduct the research in your proposal. The committee will provide a written list of topics to be covered in the examination. This requirement must be met no later than the end of the fourth semester in the program (for full-time students). Upon successful completion of the oral examination, you may file for candidacy.

Dissertation (12-18 credits)

The final dissertation will be a refinement and expansion of the your dissertation prospectus. Your final dissertation must be completed by the end of the sixth semester in the program (for full-time students). You will defend your fully publication-ready dissertation at a public defense that will include an oral examination by your PhD committee.

Total Credit Hours: 72

3.0 Degree GPA required


Instruction Method

  • Online (100 percent of the degree requirements can be fulfilled online)

Full/Part Time Options

  • Full Time
  • Part Time

Credits Required

  • 72 Hours


  • 4 to 5 Years

Application Fee

  • $50

Special Requirements

  • You must have a bachelor’s and master’s degree.

Program Contact

Renad Aref
366 Baldy Hall
Buffalo, NY 14260
Email: gseinfo@buffalo.edu
Phone: 716-645-2110

SED Statement

This program is officially registered with the New York State Education Department (SED).

Online programs/courses may require students to come to campus on occasion. Time-to-degree and number of credit hours may vary based on full/part time status, degree, track and/or certification option chosen. Time-to-degree is based on calendar year(s). Contact the department for details.

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