The First Meeting with the Director of Graduate Studies
Upon entering the graduate program, each student must communicate with the Director of Graduate Studies, who will assist him or her in planning the first semester of work.
Selecting and Meeting with the Advisory Committee
At the beginning of the second semester, each student must, in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies, first select and then meet with an Advisory Committee, consisting of three faculty members who match the student's individual needs and interests. This committee will aid the student by suggesting courses and areas of study which will foster his or her interests and remedy any deficiencies in his or her background, and it will guide the student's work until his or her admission to Ph.D. candidacy. Students may, with the approval of the Director of Graduate Studies, make changes to their Advisory Committee.
Developing an Area Requirements Plan
In consultation with the Advisory Committee, first year students must develop a plan on how to meet the area requirements. This plan must be submitted before the Graduate Committee holds its annual review of progress in late February; thus first year students should request a meeting of his or her Advisory Committee during January or February. To reflect any changes in their interests, students may from time to time, in consultation with their Advisory Committee, modify the Area Requirements Plan.
As soon as possible after the Advisory Committee has approved a student’s tentative Area Requirements Plan, the student should give the Director of Graduate Studies a copy of it. The Director will review the plan to make sure that it is consistent with the formal guidelines and general expectations of the department. If questions arise, the Director might consult with the Advisory Committee about possible changes. Any subsequent changes to the plan should be similarly submitted and reviewed as promptly as possible.
During January or February of the second year of graduate studies, each student will again meet with the Advisory Committee to review the student’s course grades and written work. In order to evaluate the student’s progress during his or her first year and first semester of the second year, the Advisory Committee may consult with other faculty members who have worked closely with the student.