This is going to sound really nitpicky (it is, but so is much of academia), but I’ve noticed some confusion among graduate students in our department as to what constitutes a Ph.D Student and what constitutes a Ph.D Candidate. I’m sure this owes more to our department’s opacity in procedural matters than anything else.
The main reason I want to point this out is to help others avoid accidentally misrepresenting their place in the program, especially to someone on the outside, such as a job search committee or colleague at a conference. So:
One is only a Candidate (or ABD) once they are course complete, exams are taken, and the prospectus is finished. All three conditions must be met for the Candidate title to be applicable, as well as approval from Graduate Studies/your advisor for the change in status.
Again, I want to reiterate that I’m not trying to be overly retentive about this, but thought it worth mentioning. This isn’t just a nomenclatural difference, as some grants, such as those from NSF, require Candidacy status to even think about applying for money.
Hope everyone’s having a good summer.