The University of Southern California (USC) School of Architecture has announced a new degree program—doctor of philosophy in architecture—which students can enroll in starting this fall. The program will nominally have a three-year time frame and will focus on building sciences and technology with the intention of producing graduates that can lead research at architecture and engineering firms or go into university-level teaching. "We would expect that many, maybe even most, of the students would end up [teaching]," says Douglas Noble, associate dean of the School of Architecture and chair of the Ph.D. program. Noble began pursuing the idea of this program eight years ago, in part based on USC's now-defunct doctor of building sciences program that ran from 1965 to 1985. "The biggest part was financing," says Noble. "It's an expensive proposition for a university, so it was slow going." The first students are expected to graduate in 2011, though transfer students could graduate earlier. The doctor of philosophy in architecture degree can also serve as a continued study path for students already enrolled in USC's master's program in architecture. The focus will remain on building sciences and technology for the first few years, but may branch out to include areas of study in historic preservation or history and theory.