Information for Current Graduate Students > Academic Progress > The Advisory Committee
Over the course of your program, you will run into research questions that require insight and input from experts outside your advisor's and your area of focus. Whether it is forming a complex experimental design, computer software expertise, or statistics, an advisory committee will be required.
Your advisory committee must be established and the Advisory Committee Appointment Form submitted to the Graduate Secretary no later than the mid-point of the student's registered second semester. The form can either be printed for you by the Graduate Secretary or can be accessed through the Office of Graduate Studies Forms page. The form is under "Graduate Records Forms & Documents".
Students are required to form an advisory committee consisting of at least two graduate faculty members (excluding the advisor), and of which the chair of the established committee is the advisor. Members of the committee are not required to be a faculty in the student's specific department. The student should consult and seek the advice of his/her advisor when establishing his/her advisory committee. What area of expertise will be required and go hand-in-hand with your research?
The University's Graduate Calendar features a list of responsibilities which an advisory committee should uphold.
Committee meetings should be organized fairly regularly or whenever the student has reached a significant time point in their research program (i.e. planning an experiment, disclosure of findings, etc.). The minimum number of committee meetings per semester is one.
At the Department of Animal Biosciences, your committee meetings can be done in any of the shared spaces that can be booked by the main office. For detailed information on booking rooms as well as other miscellaneous required equipment such as projectors or laptops, please see the Booking System page.
Some other tips:
- Your first advisory committee serves to acquaint your committee members with yourself and your research. It serves to help them familiarize with your proposed research, and it is usually held before the organization of your first trial/data collection. Your presentation should consist of your past research history (if any), findings from review of literature, your hypothesis and purported objectives, and your proposed experimental design if one exists. Your subsequent meetings should be held to continue where you left off as well as reflect on your progress and future plans.
- It might seem like a daunting task to attempt to disclose your proposed research to faculty members who are experts in their areas. However, remember that they are there to encourage you and give you the insight that they can provide for you. They understand and acknowledge that you are new in this realm and will do their best to guide you through your studies.
- Do not hesitate to book a time and meet with your advisory committee members individually should you have any specific questions about something in your research.
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