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This article in NSE

  1. Vol. 37 No. 1, p. 32-37
    Received: May 31, 2007

    * Corresponding author(s): mec@ifas.ufl.edu
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The Last Year of Your Graduate School Experience: Advice from a Major Professor

  1. Mary E. Collins *
  1. Soil and Water Science Dep., G-175 McCarty Hall, Univ. of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-0290


Most graduate students are unaware of the procedures and expectations during the last year of their graduate program and, especially, not from the faculty perspective. The timeline I describe in this article begins with what needs to be done almost a year before finishing and ends with what happens after you, the graduate student, pass the final defense exam. Recommendations include how to organize your thoughts before you start to write, how to work with your committee, as well as some dos and don'ts at your defense exam. Lastly, I discuss some of the emotional aspects of what you and your major professor might experience during this year. My advice is for Ph.D. students, but much of it is also applicable to Masters students.

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