Graduate Program Guidelines, Department of Comparative Biosciences, College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

College of Veterinary Medicine at Illinois

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Graduate Program Guidelines

Purpose and Objectives

The objective of our graduate training program is to provide advanced training in research in selected areas of Physiology, Pharmacology, Toxicology, or Morphology. Each student's program is individually tailored to meet this objective. To this end, the department requires only a minimum of core courses, thus allowing the greatest possible flexibility in program design for each student to meet his or her goals. It is expected that students will earn the MS degree within two to three years, or the PhD degree within four to five years, after entering the respective program. Students may earn the PhD degree without earning the MS degree.

Policy for Satifactory Progress

1. A recommendation of satisfactory progress would be based on the usual tenure of two to three years for completion of the MS degree and four to five years for the PhD degree. -- In keeping with this policy, maximum limits for financial support will be typically three years for the MS degree and typically five years for the PhD degree.

2. For both MS and PhD candidates, guidelines for satisfactory progress include:

a. Satisfactory progress in the student's graduate program as determined by the student's major advisor an/or research advisor.

b. Maintenance of a grade point average of at least 3.0 ("B" average).

c. Absence of a "D" or "F" grade during the student's tenure in the graduate program at the University of Illinois.

3. Additional guidelines for PhD candidates include:

a. International Students must complete all ESL language requirements before taking the preliminary examination.

b. At least twelve (12) months must elapse between completion of the preliminary examination and the taking of the thesis examination.

Review of Academic Progress

The Graduate Studies Committee will meet annually during the spring semester for the purpose of a formal review of academic progress of all graduate students in the Department.

The Graduate Studies Committee will forward a recommendation for each student of satisfactory, marginal or unsatisfactory progress to the Department Head, major advisor, research advisor, and Advisory Committee.

The format for the Graduate Studies Committee recommendation is defined in Appendix B of this document (see also Attachment B1, B2 and B3 of this document). If progress is determined to be marginal or unsatisfactory, recommendations of conditions under which the student will be permitted to continue, or for a termination date if the student is not allowed to continue, will be made by the Graduate Studies Committee.

The Department Head may agree or disagree with the Committee, and following consultations with the Graduate Studies Committee and the Major advisor and/or research advisor, the Department Head's decision will be final.

The student, his or her major advisor and/or research advisor, Advisory Committee, and the Graduate Studies Committee will be informed in writing of the Department Head's decision.

Students have the right of appeal within 30 days following notification of the decision of the Graduate Studies Committee (see Section XI in A Handbook for Graduate Students and Advisors, and Section 6 "Graduate College Student Grievance Guidelines" in this document).

Major Advisor Responsibilites

The primary responsibility of the major advisor is to guide the training of the individual student. To do this most effectively, the advisor must have a clear idea of the goals of the student. This requires open communication between the student and the advisor. To this end, the advisor must:

1. Be available to the student.

2. Assist in the selection of the Advisory Committee and, when appropriate, a research advisor.

3. Assist in the design of the program of study.

4. Assist in the selection of an appropriate research topic.

5. Evaluate on a semester basis the student's progress and submit a report to the Graduate Studies Committee and a copy to the student.

Responsibilities of the Research Advisor

Guide the research progress of the student, in consultation with the major advisor.

Responsibilites of the Advisory Committee

1. Assist in the design of the program of study.

2.Meet with the student, as a Committee, at least annually (more frequent contacts are recommended). The individual members of the Committee should also be available for consultation with the student as required.

In this document, "Handbook" refers to A Handbook for Graduate Students and Advisors produced for the Graduate College by the Office of the Associate Chancellor for Public Affairs. The Handbook can be obtained from either the Department office, or from the Graduate Records Office, B3 North Coble Hall.