Who is responsible for advising on my course requirements?
- Your research advisor is ultimately responsible. The advisor and your supervisory committee must be consulted.
What are the course requirements?
- There are three core courses (Integrative Biology, Scientific Communication and Statistics) for 9 credits. There are three electives for 9 credits plus a 3 course requirement for a journal club/seminar. Your advisor/supervisory committee may recommend you to take additional courses.
Who decides on electives?
- Your research advisor along with your supervisory committee.
Can I take Directed Independent Study (DIS) credit?
No, DIS credits are not acceptable to the program, instead, you can take advanced research credit (BSC 7978).
My supervisory/dissertation committee is asking me to take more courses than the 18 credits + the journal club/seminar. What should I do?
- Your committee is in the best position to advice on your needs to take the additional course. Their recommendations are final.
The electives and the core courses are not offered in all semesters. How can I plan for my coursework?
- The program depends on other departments for the electives. You can plan ahead by consulting with the respective faculty who teach the courses. Currently the Integrative Biology I core courses are offered once a year by Biology. The Statistics course is also offered at least once a year by three different departments (Biology/Math/Psychology).
Two of the courses I want to take are offered at the same time. What can I do?
- Consult your advisor to clarify the order in which you should take courses.
Can I skip some of the courses and go for the candidacy exam?
- No . You must complete all the core courses and the electives before advancing to candidacy.
Does this mean no exceptions can be made?
- Under special circumstances exceptions are possible; but formal advancement to candidacy will be delayed until core requirements are met. Apply in writing to the program assistant.
Is journal club/seminar a requirement before the candidacy exam?
- No. You can take the journal club/seminar course (three courses) any time before graduation. Note that the course name must include seminar or journal club.
The Journal club/seminar requirement is based on courses rather than credits. Why?
- Different departments offer these courses as 1-2 credit courses. These credits can not be broken into parts to meet your needs.
When should I form my committees?
- The supervisory committee must be in place before the end of first semester because you need the committee’s input on your course selection. Those who are on rotation or whose major advisor is not yet identified, should plan to do it within two months of advisor choice. The dissertation committee must be in place by the end of the second year prior to taking the candidacy exam.
Who should be on these two committees?
- Three members of the program faculty including your advisor should be on the supervisory committee. Four members of the program faculty including your advisor should be on the dissertation committee. Same three members of the supervisory committee can be in the dissertation committee. The dissertation committee must have at least one member who is outside your immediate area of research. At least one member of both these committees must have trained a Ph.D. student.
Who is responsible for selecting members of my committee? Can I have an input?
- Your advisor is primarily responsible. However, you can recommend members to your advisor.
I want to change members of my supervisory/dissertation committee. Can I do this?
- Yes, only if your advisor agrees.
I want to change my advisor, Is it possible?
- Yes. First start discussions with your advisor. Then identify a new advisor and clarify whether he/she has interest and research support. Keep in mind that once you have moved to a new advisor, a new supervisory/dissertation committee has to be constituted. You may have to take additional courses if your new advisor recommends. In addition be prepared for some loss of time when you start a new project. The program assistant must be informed in writing when changing advisors.
My advisor wants me to do research and I don’t have time to take the courses in the beginning. What should I do?
- Completion of course work is a requirement before advancing to candidacy. Your research cannot take place at the expense of the coursework. Plan accordingly.
My contract provides only for academic year support. Who is responsible for my summer salary?
- Your advisor is responsible for your summer support. Consult your advisor in January to understand what your options are. There are limited TA positions available for summer in the Biology Dept. A request must come from your advisor to the program assistant (Biology students) or to the Chair of the Biomed Graduate Committee (Biomed students).
Who should I contact for my continued TA support?
- Only your research advisor can request for TA support. For Biomed students the advisor submits the TA request to the chair of the Biomed Graduate Committee. For Biology students the advisor submits the request to the Ph.D. program assistant.
Is there a deadline for this continued TA support request?
- Yes. For Fall by May 15, Spring by Oct 15 and Summer by April 1.
Can I move from RA to TA and vice versa?
- Yes. But your advisor must indicate to the program assistant by the deadline above. Otherwise you may not be able to do so.
What are the annual paperwork requirements for me to complete?
- Two. A milestone requirement (beginning fall semester) and a research progress report (before the end of fall semester). You are responsible for updating the milestone form which is kept in your folder. You can update more than once a year. Both you and your advisor are responsible for the research progress report, which starts from the end of second year. Original signatures are necessary for these two forms.
I am going to be out of town/country when these deadlines fall. What should I do?
- You are responsible for meeting the deadline. Plan in advance.
How flexible is the program going to be to meet my needs?
-The program will make every attempt to be flexible. However, certain guidelines must be followed.
I want to take a break for few months and then come back to the program. Is it possible?
- Yes, but only if your advisor and the committee agree. A specific plan must be provided by your sponsor to the program assistant and must be included in your milestones report. Keep in mind, in order to maintain continuous enrollment, you must register for at least one credit during at least two out of the three semesters during an academic year (fall, spring, summer).
I am admitted to Candidacy. What are the paperwork requirements?
- The chair of your Dissertation Committee informs the program assistant by E-Mail
- Update the milestone check list
- Complete the FAU Admission to Candidacy Form 8
- Complete the Research Compliance and Safety Form 12
- Complete the memorandum to the College of Science , Associate Dean, student services
- Once these forms are completed, submitted and approved you are admitted to Candidacy. You can now register for Dissertation credits.
- Within one month of Admission to Candidacy, submit your research progress report.
After a few years into the program, I realize that I may not be able to complete the degree. What can I do?
- If you meet the requirements for Master’s Program within the participating units you may qualify for MS Degree. Consult the individual departments for guidelines and requirements.
I am located off-site. I have very limited contact with the Boca campus. What should I do?
The program is aware of this problem. An annual meeting is being planned. Consider attending seminars/journal clubs/symposiums offered at the main campus.
My work may involve intellectual property. Does FAU have a patent policy?
- Yes. See http://www.fau.edu/research/techtransfer/index.php for details on policy.
I don't seem to be getting some of the E-Mails from the program. Why?
-The FAU server considers some E-Mail systems as SPAM. Use FAU E-Mail address only.
Where can I get additional information on graduate admissions and policy guidelines?
Can I transfer my Master’s credits into the Ph.D. program?
- Yes . Doctoral programs may accept a maximum of 36 credits earned elsewhere in an approved graduate program. A maximum of 6 graduate credits earned from another institution in a nondegree-seeking status may be transferred. Your advisor/supervisory committee must agree. The core courses/journal club/seminar courses must be still taken. See FAU academic policies and graduation procedure (link currently unavailable) for details.
Does FAU have a graduate student association?
- Yes. Contact Graduate Student Association (GSA), in the Office of Agency for Graduate Concerns or Email email@example.com.
How can I get funding to present research at conferences and/or professional meetings?
Where can I get help on housing needs?
See http://www.fauoffcampus.com/ or http://www.fau.edu/housing/.
Who should I contact in the program for my questions?
- Direct all your queries through E-Mail only to the Program Assistant (Michelle Cavallo - firstname.lastname@example.org).