Every PhD student must select a thesis advisor by the end of the third semester who the student will work with primarily on dissertation research. The thesis advisor must be a faculty member in the IEOR department.
The thesis proposal is an important step towards a successful dissertation, that defines the scope of the research questions being examined in the thesis; the current contributions towards addressing those and future directions to explore.
- Context. The purpose of the Thesis Proposal is to cement the progress of PhD students toward the eventual Doctoral Dissertation. It additionally helps students develop writing and presentation skills.
- Structure. The Thesis Proposal is a compulsory step. It normally takes place during the third academic year, and no later than by the end of the seventh semester.
A student presenting a Thesis Proposal will prepare a journal-quality document describing ongoing research and potential extensions, and will deliver a talk describing the work. A partial PhD thesis committee made up of three faculty from the IEOR Department will be convened for the purpose of reviewing this document, and the talk. This committee, under normal circumstances, will serve at the eventual Thesis Defense. The thesis proposal should describe work that has reached a perceptible level of maturity, and make a convincing case that the work will in due course lead to a dissertation. An unsatisfactory proposal will merit a review of the student's performance by the advisor, the Director of PhD program and the Department Chair.
- Timing. The committee should be convened, and the proposal scheduled no later than the end of the 7th semester of PhD. When scheduling the proposal students should contact the IEOR Department office and the Director of PhD program.
After the defense, the completed Dissertation Prospectus Committee Report, signed and approved by the committee members, must be submitted to the IEOR department.
More information about the dissertation prospectus can be found on the GSAS website.