Dissertation Stanford University

In these cases, it is acceptable for the student to form a reading committee prior to the dissertation proposal hearing.The reading committee then serves as the proposal committee.

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In defining a dissertation topic, the student collaborates with her or his faculty advisor or dissertation advisor (if one is selected) in the choice of a topic for the dissertation.

The dissertation proposal is a comprehensive statement on the extent and nature of the student’s dissertation research interests.

The proposal hearing seeks to review the quality and feasibility of the proposal.

The Second-Year Review and the Proposal Hearing are separate milestones and may not occur as part of the same hearing or meeting.

At least one person serving on the proposal committee must be from the student’s area committee (CTE, DAPS, SHIPS).

All three members must be on the Academic Council; if the student desires the expertise of a non-Academic Council member, it may be possible to petition.After the hearing, a memorandum listing the changes to be made will be written and submitted with the signed proposal cover sheet and a copy of the proposal itself to the Doctoral Programs Officer.Review and approval of the dissertation proposal occurs normally during the third year.There is no commitment on the part of the student’s advisor to automatically serve as the dissertation chair.Based on the student’s interests and the dissertation topic, many students approach other GSE professors to serve as the dissertation advisor, if appropriate.A dissertation proposal committee is comprised of three academic council faculty members, one of whom will serve as the major dissertation advisor.Whether or not the student’s general program advisor serves on the dissertation proposal committee and later the reading committee will depend on the relevance of that faculty member’s expertise to the topic of the dissertation, and his/her availability.The Doctoral Dissertation Reading Committee form should be completed and given to the Doctoral Programs Officer to enter in the University student records system.Note: The proposal hearing committee and the reading committee do not have to be the same three faculty members.Students are urged to begin thinking about a dissertation topic early in their degree program.Concentrated work on a dissertation proposal normally begins after successful completion of the Second-Year Review, which often includes a “mini” proposal, an extended literature review, or a theoretical essay, plus advancement to doctoral candidacy.

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