Major Professor

Upon acceptance into the program, the student will be assigned an advisor (major professor). Any questions may be addressed to the advisor or to the Graduate Program Director of the Department of Biological Sciences. In extraordinary circumstances, a student may change major professors. To request an advisor change, the student must seek formal approval from the Graduate Committee. The student must obtain the permission from both current and prospective advisors and submit a Change of Advisor form to the Graduate Program Director for approval. If approved by the Graduate Committee, the Graduate School will then be notified of the change.

The M.S. Advisory Committee

  1. The Composition and Function of the Committee

The M.S. Advisory Committee (hereafter called the Committee) plays a major role in the development of a student’s program. The Committee must consist of at least three (3) members, including the major professor. At least one (1) committee member must be a voting member of the Department of Biological Sciences. The advisor, major professor or committee chair must be a member of the UWM Graduate Faculty, or in special cases, UWM Category B Research Academic Staff, holding the title of Scientist and recommended by the department or programmatic unit. The Graduate Program Director must approve any non-UWM Committee members. The potential non-UWM Committee member must submit a cover letter and Curriculum Vitae to the Graduate Program Director. Teaching Assistant support will be given on a priority basis to graduate students under the direction of voting members of the Biological Sciences Faculty.

While the major professor has primary responsibility for a student’s program, the M.S. Advisory Committee will meet with the student to construct a formal plan of required and advised course work. The Committee is also responsible for approval of the student’s thesis research proposal. The Committee will administer the preliminary oral examination, reviews the thesis and administers the final thesis defense. The Committee shall meet at least once per year (more often, if necessary) to monitor the student’s research and academic progress and must submit the Annual Progress Report document once a year signed by the student and M.S. Advisory Committee members. The student’s eligibility for financial aid is contingent upon the filing of this document with the Graduate Program Director by June 1 each year (see above.)

  1. Procedure for Establishing the Committee

Shortly after beginning the first semester, the student and the advisor begin preparing a plan for the complete program of graduate study. The Committee must be established by the end of the first year of enrollment. Consult the proposed Committee members and obtain their consent to serve.