The culmination of the Ph.D. program is the dissertation. As such, it must attest to a high degree of scholarly competence. The dissertation must report, in an accepted scholarly style, an original investigation of a problem of significance in the student's area of research focus. The student, through broad reading, coursework, and consultation with faculty, identifies a dissertation topic and prepares a formal statement on a proposed dissertation problem.
The student should approach a faculty member to discuss possible service as the dissertation committee chair. The chair must be a full-time faculty member in the Department. In consultation with the chair, the student selects two additional members of the dissertation committee. At least one of the additional committee members must be a regular or adjunct faculty member of the Department. Exceptions to these requirements must be approved by the Department faculty and conform to any other School of Education and University requirements. Inclusion of other university faculty or of experts from institutions other than universities may be appropriate in some cases. A completed form, Appointment of Dissertation Committee, must be filed with the School of Education Academic Council.
Under the guidance of the dissertation committee, the student works to develop a dissertation proposal. The proposal must define the problem and present a study design that includes careful attention to theoretical constructs, analytical frameworks, and appropriate research methods.
When the dissertation committee and the student determine that the proposal is ready for review, the student provides one copy of the proposal to the Curriculum Committee chair who assigns a faculty member to serve as a reader. The reader may not be member of the student's dissertation committee.
The dissertation committee and reader review the dissertation proposal in an open hearing at which the student responds to questions and comments of the reader and committee members. Following the hearing, the committee reviews suggestions and comments discussed during the hearing. If there is approval of the proposal by the dissertation committee, one copy of the proposal, a one-page abstract, and a completed form, Approval of the Dissertation Proposal, must be filed with the EAPS Department secretary and the SOE Academic Council.
Prior to engaging in any research involving human participants, a student's research plans must be approved by the U-Albany Institutional Review Board (IRB). Federal, state, and university regulations require prior approval of all plans for research involving human participants. The IRB must review and approve all research involving human participants (including class projects and dissertations) prior to conducting research. The U-Albany Office for Research contains further information and requirements.
After the dissertation committee determines that the dissertation is ready to be presented at a public hearing, the student schedules with the Department a dissertation defense hearing. Notice of the dissertation defense hearing is posted by the Department at least one week prior to the examination. Acceptance of the dissertation occurs by a unanimous (100%) vote of the dissertation committee in favor of approval.
Final copies of the dissertation must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies in accordance with the requirements of that office. >>CLOSE