Graduate Advising

This page is under development.  Please bear with us as we add/organize content that is specific to the department.  Many topics of general importance (i.e. to all departments rather than specific to our department) may be covered elsewhere.

Our graduate programs are overseen jointly by the Directors of Graduate Studies, currently Jay Emerson and Yihong Wu. Jay and Yihong advise the Masters’ and early-year PhD students; later-year PhD students tend to consult primarily with their dissertation advisor(s) but are always welcome to seek input from Jay, Yihong, or any of our faculty.  Though we are growing in size, we are committed to maintaining the small-department family atmosphere that has supportive of our students, faculty, and staff since the days of founding Chair and Director of Graduate Studies, Frank Anscombe. Over the years, our students have benefitted in particular from the guidance provided by our department staff, following the example set by founding Business Manager Barbara Amato.

Topics that could appear here but might go elsewhere on our site:

  • Funding
  • Timeline to degree and the structure of our program
  • Qualifying process and program structure
  • Advisors, mentors, and resouces (some links here)
  • Some important “deadlines” (for us all to keep track of)
  • Choosing an advisor
  • MA en route
  • What is a thesis/prospectus guidelines
  • Advisor/departmental check-ins
  • Dissertation committees and readers
  • Extra financial support
  • Dissertation submission (with links)

Topics that should be linked to GSAS pages (in my opinion):

  • Medical resources (including mental health)
  • Work life balance?
  • Conflict and mediation: external resources, faculty handbook, Title IX, …

GSAS academic calendar 2023-24

Other things I’m trying to document/organize

  • Changes between the MS and MA programs: use the “Departmental Transfer Form” found at
  • MS program summer internships (register for 695, Spring semester; talk with me for approval of the plan; then submit a short summary at the beginning of the Fall semester after the internship is complete).  If you don’t get an internship, let me know ASAP and we’ll try to take this off your transcript.
  • MA/MS/PhD students taking courses with an undergraduate-only number.  Likely for some mathematics courses.  Get permission in advance from the DGS (confirmation/documentation with Allegra and Claudia for graduate credit).

Placeholder for sample 1st-semester course selection, August 2023

Example 1.  Fall: 541, 542, 565, 627 (0.5 credit) BIS 620.  Spring (tentative): 551, 563, 661, 664, 628 (0.5 credit).

Example 2. Fall: 541, 565, 580, 627 (0.5 credit) BIS 620.  Spring (tentative); 542, 562, 566, 661, 628 (0.5 credit).

Example 3.