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Committee Meetings


Committee Meetings to Monitor Graduate Student Training Progress

          An annual meeting of each student with their committee is required to ensure satisfactory training progress and timely graduation.

  • For PhD students the first of these meetings usually will be the oral component of the qualifying exam.
  • For MS students the first meeting must take place in the Fall term of their second year.

Subsequent meetings must occur within 12 months of the preceding meeting. Students must accomplish this requirement to be permitted to register for the next semester after that 12-month period.  Plan for committee meetings well in advance to avoid conflicts with exams, scientific meetings, etc.

          Any one of the following four options will suffice for the annual progress evaluation. For all options, at least three of the PhD committee members or two of the three MS committee members must be present. We strongly encourage use of all committee members whenever possible.

Option 1. A traditional committee meeting with committee members present physically or by conference call where the student presents their research plan and progress.

Option 2. Presentation of a public departmental seminar in academic semester 5, 6, 7, or 8 will count as the committee meeting for that year (year 3 or 4).

Option 3. Presentation at a regularly-scheduled lab group meeting of one of the committee members other than the mentor.

Option 4. One-on-one meetings between the student and each committee member.

The format chosen each year is determined by consultation between the mentor and student, and agreed upon by the individual committee member(s).



        After each meeting a signed Committee Meeting Form will be given to the Graduate Program Associate to be added to the student record. The form notes the meeting format used, the committee members present, and their evaluation of his/her progress. At this time the student must also file an updated CV using UGA Elements and provide an electronic copy to the Graduate Program Associate.


General Evaluation Criteria

          The majority of the committee members present at an annual meeting (but not less than 2 members for an MS student) must deem the 12-month progress to be satisfactory. Satisfactory progress means that the student is actively engaged in taking and analyzing data and is making and implementing judicious choices in troubleshooting his/her project, regardless of whether a specific experimental result has been obtained. Faculty may also recognize outstanding progress by a student as commendable.


Remedial Action

          If the majority finds progress unsatisfactory, the committee must devise a 6-month plan of action to remedy deficiencies and record that plan on the form. The plan should explicitly state the deficiencies in the annual progress and make specific recommendations to remedy the situation. Within 6 months, the student must present to the committee (using any above meeting format) evidence of satisfactory progress, as stated on the form. The decision of the committee must immediately be reported by the major professor to the GAC and the Department Head.

          If progress is deemed satisfactory at the 6-month meeting, the committee will decide whether the student should meet again in 6-months for his/her regularly scheduled annual meeting or have a meeting again in 12 months (now six months offset from the original cycle.  In either case, students will then have a 12-month meeting cycle again as long as progress is satisfactory.  

          If a majority of the committee still finds progress unsatisfactory at the 6-month meeting, the student will be precluded from registering for classes in the next academic term; i.e. they will be dropped from the graduate program.

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