USC is a major research university that provides a wide range of academic programs.
Faculty with similar areas of knowledge and interest are grouped together to form schools (such as the Keck School of Medicine, the USC Thornton School of Music and the USC Viterbi School of Engineering) and academic departments within the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts & Sciences (such as Biology, English and Sociology). Certain areas of study are based on broad areas of interdisciplinary knowledge and draw faculty from several departments.The faculty in each department and school determines the rationale underlying its curricula, the type and content of courses it offers, and the requirements for master's and doctoral degrees.USC awards Master of Arts, Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees, as well as doctoral and master’s degrees in professional fields. Graduate students are encouraged to select their degree objectives based on the career or further study they wish to pursue. For a list of all graduate degrees currently awarded at USC, alphabetized by school, click here.
- Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
- Professional Doctorates
- Master's Degrees
- Dual Degree Programs
- Progressive Master's Degree
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
The PhD degree represents original contribution to current knowledge in a specific field. While the Graduate School confers all PhD degrees, prospective students are advised to contact their program of interest for course and research requirements. A list of current PhD degrees offered can be found here listed by School.
Please note that professional doctoral degrees—which prepare students for leadership and practice in the health professions, the arts, education, law and public welfare—follow policies established by their respective schools.
Examples of professional doctorates not conferred by the Graduate School include:
- Doctor of Dental Surgery
- Doctor of Education
- Doctor of Medicine
- Doctor of Musical Arts
- Doctor of Pharmacy
- Doctor of Public Administration
- Juris Doctor
Master of Arts (M.A.) degrees are granted in the arts, humanities and social sciences, while Master of Science (M.S.) degree programs are granted in the natural sciences and professional fields. At USC, most of the M.A. degrees and many of the M.S. degrees are conferred by the Graduate School. Generally, master's degrees for proficiency in professional fields are conferred by the professional school.
A list of current master's degrees offered can be found here organized by School.
Dual Degree Programs
The array of innovative dual degree programs at USC represents the university's commitment to rigorous and vibrant graduate and professional education. Programs such as the Juris Doctor/Doctor of Pharmacy and Master of Science, and Gerontology/Master of Business Administration, offer students the opportunity to work with faculty from two or more departments or schools. Please contact your program of interest for dual degree information.
Progressive Master's Degree
The progressive master's degree enables superior USC undergraduates with at least a 3.0 GPA to begin work on a master's degree while completing requirements for the bachelor's degree. The degrees should be in similar fields of study, in the same or different department(s).
For additional information and application instructions, click here