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ABE Graduate Student Timeline

  • Visit with your advisor and current graduate students for advice on courses to take in the first semester. Be sure to include ABE 694, the graduate seminar.
  • Register for courses in Banner and ill out Form 23 for research credits and have it signed by your advisor. Students on an assistantship generally register for 9-12 credits of coursework and an additional 3-9 credits of research (for a total of 15-18) during their first semester. Take the form to the Graduate Office (ABE 201) to have research credits entered before the first day of class.
  • Satisfy all admission conditions (such sending your final transcripts to the Graduate School) that are in your letter recommending admission.
  • Develop an initial Plan of Study. You can look at the examples available on the web to give you an idea of what is often done in your area. This will also be part of the ABE 694 orientation in the Fall semester. You will be able to change it in future semesters once you have more definite plans for thesis topic and committee members.
  • Check out Purdue’s writing program if you need help with your writing.
  • Visit with your advisor and current graduate students for advice on courses to take in the second semester.
  • Register for courses in Banner and fill out Form 23 for research credits for the second semester.
  • Form your advisory committee and hold a meeting to discuss your courses and thesis research.
  • Clarify your summer goals and plans before the term ends. Faculty may be less available over the summer.
  • Fill out Form 23 to register for at least 8 credits of research for the third semester.
  • Review your initial Plan of Study and make any changes to reflect your advisory committee’s ideas. Once again click “Submit” so that the changes are made in the system.
  • Fill out Form 23 to register for at least 8 credits of research for the next semester.
  • If you are a Ph.D. student, discuss your progress toward taking the Preliminary Exams with your major professor and advisory committee. You must be registered for at least two full semesters (summer counts as a semester) after successfully completing the Preliminary Exams before you can take your Final Exam. (i.e. if you pass the Prelim in the spring semester, you will not be eligible to graduate until the following spring semester.)
  • MS students – Sign up for ABE 696 in Spring of your second year of graduate work.
  • Ph.D. students – Sign up for ABE 697, in Spring of your second year of PhD studies, and ABE 696 your final spring semester.
  • Fill out Form 23 to register for at least 8 credits of research for the next semester.
  • Schedule the written preliminary exam, which usually consists of one or more questions from each committee member which are taken by the student over the course of one to two weeks. The ABE Department requires that each member of the committee participate in the written exam.
  • In preparation for the Oral Preliminary Exam, review your plan of study with your advisor and committee to ensure all degree and residency requirements are, or will be, met.
  • Schedule the Oral Preliminary Exam with your major professor and advisory committee, and the Graduate Office, at least two weeks prior to the proposed date of the exam. Ask the Graduate Coordinator to obtain a Form 8 for taking the Preliminary Exam. Provide time, date, and title.
  • Distribute copies of your proposal to your advisory committee at least two weeks before the oral preliminary exam.
  • You must complete two full semesters (summer counts as a semester) as a registered student between the semester you complete your oral preliminary exam and the semester you will defend. In other words, if your prelim is completed during the Fall semester you cannot graduate before the following Fall semester.
  • Sign up for ABE 696, the Graduate Research Seminar, and plan to present your research to your peers.
  • Notify the Graduate Coordinator that this is your final semester. Declare candidacy on the registration form when you register for your final semester.
  • Finalize your plan of study with your advisor and committee to ensure all degree and residency requirements are met. Make any changes in enough time to meet the deadline.
  • If you will complete your exam and thesis submittal near the beginning of the semester, you might be able to register as “Exam Only.” However, if your thesis is not submitted by the deadline you will need to register for one credit and pay the regular fees.
  • Schedule a deposit date with the Graduate School Thesis office. Deposit meeting slots are limited. The schedule near the end of the semester fills quickly, so do this early in the semester to guarantee a spot. If you are unable to schedule a time during the semester, your graduation will be pushed back by a semester.
  • Schedule your final oral exam with your major professor and advisory committee, and the Graduate Office, at least two weeks prior to the proposed date of the exam. Check Graduate School Deadlines. The final exam must be completed before the semester deadline (approximately one week before the last day of classes). We strongly recommend you do not wait until this late date.
  • Distribute copies of your thesis to your advisory committee at least two weeks before the oral exam. As a courtesy, try to provide copies three weeks before the oral exam to account for faculty schedules and commitments.
  • Take the Final Exam.
  • Deposit your thesis
  • Complete the exit survey as required by the Graduate School