Doctor of Philosophy Program Guide: Exam Committee

  • The appointment of the Ph.D. Exam Committee Chair is made at the time of admission to the doctoral program.
  • Ideally, the full committee should be constituted before completion of Ph.D. coursework, but must be set up officially through MyGradProgram, including the GSR, at least three months before requesting the scheduling of Ph.D. exams.
  • Within the next few weeks, the student should make an appointment with the Graduate Director to discuss the exams and, if not yet in place, the formation of the Supervisory Committee.

The Ph.D. Examination Committee, consisting of at least four members (a chair, two regular members, and a Graduate School Representative), advises students on remaining coursework, supervises and approves the Ph.D. exam reading lists, directs and mentors students on reading for Ph.D. exams, constructs questions for the written exams, evaluates the written exams, and administers the oral General Examination.

The Ph.D. Exam Committee is officially approved by the Director of Graduate Studies. After securing the agreement of all committee members, students present the names of committee members to the English Graduate Office for official notification to the Graduate School through MyGradProgram. Additional information regarding the Ph.D. Committee can be found in Graduate School Memorandum #13.

  • The committee consists of at least four members: a single chair belonging to the graduate faculty in English; two or three other graduate faculty (at least one in English); and the Graduate School Representative, a member of the graduate faculty outside of the English Department.
  • At least two members of the Ph.D. exam committee (excluding GSR) must be from the Department of English and all committee members should be consulted regarding the addition of a non-English faculty member.
  • Students must secure the agreement of faculty, including the GSR, to serve on their Ph.D. exam committee. Faculty reserve the right not to serve on a Ph.D. exam committee.