for Atmospheric Sciences Graduate Students
(Adopted: 29 August 2003) (Amended most recently April 18, 2007, highlighted in red)
1 Complete the general university degree requirements and the Master's Degree requirements as described in the catalog (UAF catalog section for ATM). These requirements entail at least 30 credits. The student must file a Graduate Study Plan with the Graduate School. Annually, the student must complete a committee meeting and submit the Report of Committee Form to the Graduate school. There is no written comprehensive examination.
2 (Classes) Four core classes are required. The core consists of: Fundamentals (601), Atmospheric Chemistry (606), Cloud Physics (615), Radiation (613), Dynamics (645). ATM 601 is required to be taken by all students, leaving 3 out of the remaining 4 (606, 615, 613, and 645) to fulfill the MS core requirements. Further class work is encouraged and will be guided by the student's committee. One credit classes can not count towards Advancement to Candidacy.
3 (Comprehensives) Near the completion of their degree, the student gives an oral defense on their thesis work. They will have a public defense of their thesis work followed by an examination session with their committee. In this examination session, the committee will examine their thesis research as well as their general knowledge in atmospheric sciences. This examination session acts as their comprehensive exam for the M.S. degree.
4 (Thesis) The student will write a thesis and make a public presentation summarizing his/her findings. The student's thesis must be approved by the students advisory committee, and further needs the approval of the academic department chair, and the dean of the college.
1. Complete the general university degree requirements and the PhD Degree requirements as described in the catalog (UAF catalog section for ATM). These requirements entail at least 18 credits. The student must file a Graduate Study Plan with the Graduate School. Annually, the student must complete a committee meeting and submit the Report of Graduate Student Advisory Committee Form to the Graduate school.
2. (Classes) The core classes are required. The core consists of: Fundamentals (601), Atmospheric Chemistry (606), Cloud Physics (615), Radiation (613), Dynamics (645). Further class work is encouraged and will be guided by the student's committee. One credit classes can not count towards Advancement to Candidacy.
3. (Comprehensives) The comprehensive examination process begins with the written examinations (section 3.1). The student must pass the written examinations to stand for the oral presentation of the research proposal (section 3.2). Completion of both written and oral sections advances the student to Ph.D. candidacy. Re-examination is considered in section 3.3.
3.1 (Written Examinations) The student will take written comprehensive examinations on four subjects. The subjects are based upon the material in an academic course that the student has completed. The professor who regularly teaches this class (with some possible exceptions) will write the question for the examination with subject material limited to the syllabus of the course. This same professor will grade the examination question he/she wrote. The student must take the ATM 601 comprehensive examination test plus two other subjects in core topics (of their choice), plus one other examination on a class of the student's choosing (subject to the approval of the committee Chair). The professor writing the exam assigns a grading structure to their exam. For overall written comprehensive examination grading, the professor's scores are converted to grades of unsatisfactory, marginal, satisfactory, and excellent. The professor's grading structure must be written on their examination (for example, below 50% is unsatisfactory, below 70% is marginal, 70% to 90% is satisfactory, and above 90% is excellent). For a student to pass their written comprehensive examinations, they must have no unsatisfactory exams and maximally one marginal exam. Written comprehensive exams are offered once per year, in June.
3.2 (Oral Examination) The student must give an oral presentation of their thesis research plan. This presentation must demonstrate to the committee that the student has a viable research project and background knowledge sufficient to pursue a PhD degree. For the oral thesis proposal it is recommended that the student prepare a brief document (5-10 pages maximum) for their committee that outlines their research plans, states the overall goals (hypothesis), and presents a proposed road map to accomplish these goals. This document will not be graded and is intended to help the student better formulate and organize their research plan. The student's committee attends along with an outside examiner (as described in the catalog) and grades this presentation. The grades are pass, conditional pass, and fail. In the case of a conditional pass, the committee will describe the areas that must be remedied, and if the student completes these requirements, their grade is converted to pass. In the case of failure of the oral examination, the student may be re-examined once.
3.3 (Failure of Comprehensive Examinations) The student will be allowed to re-attempt the written comprehensive examinations only once. If a student has scored unsatisfactory or marginal in two or fewer subjects, the student only has to re-take these one or two examination subject tests. If a student scores unsatisfactory or marginal in more than two subjects, they must re-take the whole suite of four subject tests. If a student is in the end unable to pass their comprehensive exams, they are shifted into the M.S. program, where they must then satisfy the degree requirements of the M.S. program to get an M.S. degree.
4. (Thesis) The student will write a thesis and make a public presentation summarizing his/her findings. The student's thesis must be approved by the students advisory committee, and further needs the approval of the department chair, and the dean of the college.
5. Transfer Students
5. 1 Masters and Ph. D. transfer students will be required to take the Atmospheric Sciences core courses, unless the same or equivalent courses were already successfully taken, as determined by the student's advisory committee chair and the department chair.
5. 2 Students entering the Ph. D. program after passing the comprehensive examination at another department of the UA system or University will be evaluated by the advisory committee to determine if any parts of the Atmospheric Sciences comprehensive exam need to be taken or retaken.
Ammendments( Adopted: 1 April 2004)
1. Comprehensive Examinations will be offered during or around the first week in June of each summer, depending on faculty availability.
3. It is permitted for a faculty member outside Atmospheric Science to prepare and grade test questions.
4. It is policy that neither the test questions nor the student's test question answers will be kept by the student, but rather will be returned to the faculty. Of course, the student may go over the test in the presence of the faculty member responsible for the questions in each case.
Amendment (Adopted: 18 November 2005)
1. If a class was taught by a visiting professor, affiliated faculty or sabbatical replacement faculty, comps will be written by the tenure-track faculty whose expertise is the closest to the subject of the class.