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Graduate Committee and Requirements

Doctoral programs require a minimum of four (4) graduate faculty members, including the graduate advisor (mentor) who serves as chair or co-chair of the committee. The Chair must be a member of the College of Design Ph.D. Faculty and one other member must be a College of Design faculty member. The primary function of the committee is to advise the student in all aspects of the educational program and to monitor and evaluate that student’s progress toward the degree. Thus, the committee must be very active throughout the student’s program of graduate training, beginning with helping the student prepare his or her Plan of Graduate Work. The committee should provide an intellectually stimulating foundation for the student’s professional and scholarly development and should be sensitive to any difficulties in the student’s progress, research performance or methodology requiring attention.

The committee certifies whether the student has met NC State’s standards for a graduate degree. Advising and guiding the student on how best to qualify for the requirements of a degree is a key part of this responsibility. The committee and the student are encouraged to meet in formal sessions at appropriate intervals to critically assess the student’s progress; such meetings may be requested by the student or by any member of the committee. However, the necessity of frequent personal contact between the student and committee members cannot be overemphasized. Committee members have the obligation to express to the student any concerns they may have regarding the student’s performance, to stipulate the level and quality of work expected, and to offer guidelines to aid in the fulfillment of those expectations. Don’t be shy, meet regularly with your mentor/chair and committee members. They are here to guide your progress and assist you in your intellectual development.  It is your responsibility to make sure that you meet often enough.