2018-19 Academic Catalog

Graduate Committee

Committee Membership

Master's, Educational Specialist, and Doctor of Philosophy sections of this publication state Graduate Committee membership requirements for the respective degree. The student and committee will submit a completed committee request form to the Graduate School which must include the following information for each committee member.

  • Typed name
  • Level of Appointment (1 or 2)
  • Name of academic department that appointed the committee member to Graduate Faculty
  • Committee member's signature

The student and Graduate Coordinator are also required to sign the form.

If the student experiences a problem concerning committee membership, the student should follow the academic appeal procedure outlined in Graduate Student Academic Grievance Procedure (AOP 12.37) .

MSU Graduate Faculty Committee Members

MSU Graduate Faculty members are listed by college/department in this Catalog.

Non-Graduate Faculty Committee Members

For a thesis committee, three members are the minimum required and two of those must be members of the Graduate Faculty.  These may be either Level 1 or Level 2 Graduate Faculty.  For a doctoral committee, four members are the minimum required and three of those must be members of the Graduate Faculty.  At minimum, at least one of the doctoral committee must be Level 1 Graduate Faculty status in order to serve as the major professor and committee chair.  In all cases where the advisory committee consists of numbers above the minimum, greater than 50% of the committee members must be members of the Graduate Faculty.  

Non-Graduate Faculty committee members are expected to have a graduate degree or commensurate expertise in the field of study.  The decision whether or not a person who does not hold Level 1 or Level 2 status is qualified to serve on a thesis or dissertation committee will be determined by the department/college.

Non-Graduate Faculty committee members can serve as a co-thesis director of research with a Level 1 or Level 2 member of the Graduate Faculty or can serve as a co-dissertation director of the research along with a Level 1 member of the Graduate Faculty.  Non-Graduate Faculty committee members cannot serve as a major professor or committee chair.  If a non-Graduate Faculty committee member serves as co-thesis director or co-dissertation director, it is expected that the individual will have education and research expertise commensurate with Level 2 and Level 1 Graduate Faculty, respectively.

Membership Changes

Committee membership changes are submitted to the Graduate School on the graduate Change of Committee form. The new and departing committee member(s) and the student must sign the form. If, subsequent to the administration of the final or oral/written comprehensive examination, a student’s request to remove a member of the graduate committee is not met with the approval of that member, then the student must submit to the Dean of the Graduate School a written request containing suitable justification for removal of the committee member. The Dean of the Graduate School will then decide if removal is necessary and accordingly inform the student, the committee member, the major professor, and the Graduate Coordinator.