Plan 1: Research Literacy Paper
Students selecting Plan 1 will demonstrate literacy in science, scientific writing, and oral communication by successfully completing 8 hours of core course requirements targeted at these goals. Students must demonstrate mastery of basic scientific and biological principles by successfully completing 28 hours of elective courses and passing an oral exam administered by an exam committee consisting of three graduate faculty. All candidates must maintain a minimum scholastic average of “B” (3.0) on all graduate courses completed and must give an oral presentation that summarizes scientific literature. The latter is typically accomplished in BIOL 5000 and BIOL 5735, but other venues deemed appropriate by the faculty advisor may suffice.
In their first semester, Plan 1 students will be assigned an advisor selected from the Biology Graduate Faculty with interests overlapping those of the student. This advisor will help the student chart and plan their coursework. The advisor will also form an exam committee in the students last semester that will administer the oral exam.
Plan 3: Thesis
Students selecting Plan 3 will demonstrate literacy in research, scientific writing, and oral communication by successfully completing 14 hours of core course requirements targeted at these goals. Additionally, students must submit a thesis based on an original, scientific investigation conducted under supervision of the student’s thesis committee chair and committee members. This research will refer specifically to that performed in connection with BIOL 5990. The graduate committee must approve the thesis prior to submission to the College of Graduate Studies. Students must demonstrate mastery of scientific and biological concepts by successfully completing 18 hours of elective courses, presenting and defending their thesis research in a public seminar, and passing an oral thesis defense exam administered by the thesis committee. All candidates must maintain a minimum scholastic average of “B” (3.0) on all graduate courses completed.
With approval of the thesis research mentor, students will develop a plan of study that outlines coursework and identifies two additional Biology Graduate Faculty to serve on the thesis committee by the end of their first semester. The committee will advise the student in research activities throughout their degree and administer the oral thesis defense upon approval of the thesis by the thesis committee chair.