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Quick Reference Chart for Membership on Dissertation Committees

Quick Reference Chart for Membership on Dissertation Committees
RoleSole ChairCo-chairCognate *Member
Full, Associate, or Assistant Professor with earned Doctorate and Rackham affiliation.YesYesYesYes
Research Professors or Research Associate Professors with earned Doctorate and Rackham affiliation.With Special Membership & Supporting InformationYesNoYes
Full, Associate, or Assistant Professor without earned Doctorate but with Rackham affiliation. Must be approved on a case by case basis by the Director of OARD or designee.With Special Membership & Supporting InformationWith Special Membership & Supporting InformationWith Special Membership & Supporting InformationWith Special Membership & Supporting Information
Clinical Professor with earned DoctorateNoWith Regular MemberNoYes
Instructor or Lecturer with earned Doctorate. No Rackham affiliation required.NoWith Regular MemberNoYes
Adjunct Professor with earned DoctorateNoWith Special Membership & Supporting InformationNoWith Special Membership & Supporting Information
Research Scientists, Associate Research Scientists, Assistant Research Scientists, Research Assistant Professors or Research Investigators, all with earned DoctorateNoWith Special Membership & Supporting InformationNoWith Special Membership & Supporting Information
Retired/Emeritus ProfessorWith Special Membership & Supporting InformationYesWith Special Membership & Supporting InformationYes
Non-University of Michigan with or without earned DoctorateNoWith Special Membership & Supporting InformationNoWith Special Membership & Supporting Information
University of Michigan Non-Regular Faculty with or without earned DoctorateNoWith Special Membership & Supporting InformationNoWith Special Membership & Supporting Information
Committee Member no longer employed at University of MichiganNoWith Regular MemberNoYes

In cases where the Chair is not employed by the University of Michigan, it is necessary to have a Co-Chair that is at University of Michigan.

* Professors with less than a 50% appointment must have special approval from the Director of OARD or designee to serve as cognate.

  • A committee must have a minimum of four members.
  • Of the four, three members must be from a Rackham Doctoral Program.
  • Of the four, two members must be from the student’s home department or program.
  • Of the four, one member must have a 50% appointment in a Rackham doctoral program, other than the student’s home department/program (except IDP programs).
  • Three members must have an appointment as professor, associate professor, or assistant professor with an earned Doctorate.

University faculty who were approved to serve as sole Chair or Cognate member but who are no longer affiliated with the University may not continue to serve as the sole Chair or Cognate member. The faculty member may serve as a Co-Chair or as a regular member based upon the eligibility guidelines for dissertation committee service.

Download a PDF version of this chart.

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