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Doctoral Committee

As a doctoral student you will have a committee of faculty members that guides your doctoral experience. This committee usually is appointed during the first year after you are admitted for doctoral study. Until committee members are appointed, the chairperson of your department or a delegated representative will be your program advisor.

Committee members are appointed by the dean of the Graduate School with input from departmental program directors. The committee includes four or five members (approved for regular graduate faculty status), depending on your program of study.

All committees have two members from your major area and an at-large member from a field or department not already represented on the committee. If your program does not have a cognate, a fourth committee member will come from an appropriate area related to your program of study. If your program has a cognate, your committee will include a representative for each cognate in your program of study.

If you are pursuing the doctor of education degree in science education, your committee will have five members: two representing the subject area, one from Teachers College, a teacher education faculty member, and an at-large member appointed by the dean of the Graduate School.

If you are pursuing the doctor of arts degree, you will have a five-member committee with at least two members representing your area of primary emphasis, one representing the area of secondary emphasis, one or two representing the School of Music at-large, and one appointed by the dean of the Graduate School to represent the university.

The committee chairperson will represent your primary area of study and must meet the criteria for Dissertation Chair Endorsement in the department of your major. Please see specific degree program requirements for detailed policies about the appointment of doctoral committees.

Committee members work with you to determine your plan of study and guide your dissertation. If you studying full time, you’ll need to have your plan of study on file in your program area’s department office and the Graduate School within one year of your committee formation. If you are studying part time, you’ll need to have your plan of study on file in your program area’s department office and the Graduate School within two years. If you do not meet this deadline, you may not be allowed to continue to register for courses.

At each stage of your doctoral study the committee will work with the Graduate School to determine when you are qualified to continue your studies.