Charge to the Special Committee on Graduate Education

The Special Committee on Graduate Education (SCGE) was jointly appointed by the Office of Academic Affairs and the Faculty Consultative Committee (FCC).

Four issues emerged as major topics in the 2013 survey of graduate students, faculty, and staff who work with graduate students and through reports from Senate committee chairs. Thus, the SCGE has been organized into four subcommittees, each of which will make recommendations on one particular set of issues: 1) graduate student financing, 2) the facilitation of the graduate student experience, 3) graduate program enrollment management, and 4) the visibility and quality of graduate education. We are asking each subcommittee to provide responses to these concerns and, as appropriate, to make specific recommendations that will help strengthen the Graduate School for the future. The whole committee may also decide that there are additional issues it would like to address.

The SCGE will mainly focus on programs offering Ph.D. research degrees, particularly those that the National Research Council has identified as central to its assessment of graduate education in the United States. There are, however, additional graduate education issues that deserve attention and that may be highlighted by the work of this committee.

Below are listed some specific questions that might be addressed by each subcommittee. All four subcommittees are also asked to consider two additional questions that will be addressed by the committee as a whole:

Because the University of Minnesota is engaged in strategic planning and the future of graduate education is clearly essential in this process, and because it would be ideal to be able to implement suggested improvements as soon as possible, perhaps in time for the next graduate student recruitment cycle, the SCGE, reflecting on the work of the whole and the work of the specific subcommittees, is asked to report back to the Provost and the FCC by December 1, 2013.

Subcommittee Queries - Initial Suggestions

(The subcommittees may choose to focus their efforts somewhat differently, and it is also the case that some of these questions could be taken up by more than one subcommittee.)

A) Graduate student financing.

B) Facilitation of the graduate student experience and ensuring program quality.

C) Graduate Program Enrollment Management.

D) Oversight of, and Advocacy for, the Visibility and Quality of Graduate Education.