Tier 2: Graduate Policy Committee Review
Each spring/summer, a departmental committee will review the record of every student who has either:
- Completed 2 years in the program without previous review, or
- Passed the Tier 1 exams on entrance to the program and elects the review at the end of the first year.
The student will:
- Provide to the graduate office a personal statement that describes the student's plan for further study and research, including a proposal for the area of research and a topic for a minor.
- Request an endorsement from his or her (interim) advisor or another faculty member. By endorsing a student, the faculty member agrees to guide the student to prepare for the Tier 3 exam.
The review committee will decide which students may continue toward Ph.D. candidacy. The committee's considerations will include:
- Performance on the Tier 1 exams.
- Performance in 500-level coursework.
- A faculty endorsement.
- Written personal statement by student.
- Student's performance of assistantship duties.
As indicated above, students can accelerate their progress in the program by passing the Tier I exams by January of their frst year and electing the Tier II review at the end of their first year. The review committee will treat this as favorable for their case. Students who do not recive a recommendation to continue will be encouraged to complete the M.A. degree.
In support of the Tier 2 review, grades in 500-level courses will be given and evaluated according to the following guidelines:
- A grade of A means that, based on the student's work in that course, the instructor believes the student will succeed in being admitted to Ph.D. candidacy.
- A grade of B means that the student's work in that course is satisfactory, but the instructor has reservations (based on that work) about the student's ability to be admitted to candidacy.
- Lower grades will indicate unsatisfactory work.
All students must maintain at least a B average in their coursework, in accordance with currently published departmental and university guidelines. As indicated above, students can accelerate their progress in the program by passing the Tier 1 exams on entrance into the program and electing to take the Tier 2 review at the end of their first year. The review committee will treat this as favorable for a student's case. Students who do not receive a recommendation to continue will be encouraged to complete the M.A. degree. If they have financial support at the time of review, they will be entitled to at least one additional semester of support in order to do so.