FORMING YOUR THESIS COMMITTEE

Students are expected to form their thesis committee during their 2nd year, after entering the mentor's lab. Thesis committee is formed only after consultation with the mentor. This is NOT a decision the student makes alone.

  • Committee must have a minimum of 5 members.
  • Mentor is traditionally the chair of the committee, except during the thesis proposal and final defense. However, another member can be chair. That decision is the student and mentor's.
  • 1 member of the thesis committee (Graduate School prefers 2 members) must be outside the student's research area of expertise.
  • If a student has a committee member who is either not UAB faculty (at another university) or who does not have UAB Graduate Faculty status (check here), student must:
    1- request a CV (via email) from the proposed committee member
    2- complete the Recommendation for Appointment to Graduate Faculty
    3- contact the Theme office to get a letter of recommendation from the Theme Director
  • Committee form must be filled out, printed out, and taken to the Theme office for signature and submission to the Graduate School.

COMMITTEE MEETINGS

Committee meetings must be held at least once a year until a student's fourth year in the program, at which time meetings must be every 6 months. Meetings can be held with more frequency, if needed or desired by the student and/or mentor.

The student and mentor (or chair, if different from the mentor) must provide minutes from every committee meeting using the GBS approved form (click here for form). Student completes a portion of the form; the mentor/chair finishes the minutes and makes sure the forms are returned to the Theme office either via email ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) or in person (Shelby 120c) within a week.