Choosing an Advisor
An advisor should be chosen during the first year of residence. An advisor must be a member of the Michigan Tech Graduate Faculty.
A student and professor should know about each other before choosing to work together. The student should be familiar with the research interests of the professor and what the potential advisor expects of graduate students. The professor should know the research interests and work habits of the student. They should be comfortable working with each other.
Choosing an advisor is an important decision. The advisor helps the PhD student decide what classes to take, what research topics to investigate, and in some cases what types of financial support are made available. The advisor is also instrumental in helping a student obtain a position after graduation.
Tips for Choosing an Advisor
While choosing an advisor is a common expression, beneficial advisor-student relationships are an important decision made by both the student and the professor. The right match often involves working with a professor who recommends the topic to a student or is otherwise familiar with the research and may have been planning to work in the area of interest in the near future. The student-advisor pairing relies on a mutually understood commitment to work productively together. Compatible communication and work styles are also important.
Together the student and advisor decide on an Advisory Committee composed of a minimum of four faculty, including the advisor. As is the case with the student-advisor pairing, all proposed committee members should carefully consider the time and resource commitments required for a succesful outcome. All University-associated committee members must also be members of the Michigan Tech Graduate Faculty. It is suggested that one committee member be selected from outside the University, a non-faculty member who provides additional research expertise. This member will not be involved until research is active and will have ad hoc faculty status limited to serving on the Advisory Committee of the PhD student. Requests for an affiliated faculty appointment are made using the recommendation form for graduate faculty appointment, accompanied by the proposed member’s résumé.
The Advisory Committee becomes official by having the advisor sign the Advisor and Committee Recommendation form. As this form must also be signed by the CSE Program Director and Graduate School, these two entities, in effect, approve the Advisory Committee.
Non-Michigan Tech Advisory Committee members are involved only in research-related activities and discussions. They are required to attend either remotely or in person the dissertation proposal and final oral examination and to vote on approval