1 1 Developmental Psychology Program Graduate Degree Requirements: Outline Revised 10/21/14 The doctoral program in developmental psychology is structured so that all requirements for the degree can be completed in five years. This entails satisfying all the requirements listed in the Psychology General Requirements Document and the Graduate Bulletin. This document represents a summary of the current requirements for students in the Developmental Program. Requirements might change, but will occur only with notice. REQUIRED DEVELOPMENTAL COURSEWORK In addition to general course requirements listed in the Departmental General Requirements Document and the University Graduate Bulletin, the Developmental Program Area requires the following courses: Concepts and Methods in Development (PSY 60200) Cognitive Development (PSY 60250) Socioemotional Development (PSY 60260) Developmental Psychopathology (PSY 60282) Students will also complete the 2-semester Quantitative Methods (PSY and PSY 60101) sequence during their first year of study. The program encourages students to complete a course from the following offerings: Psychological Measurement and Test Development (PSY 60121), or Psychological Assessment I (PSY 60320). However, Concepts and Methods in Development meets the department requirement for a psychological measurement or advanced methods course. The program encourages students to take additional quantitative courses during their residence, and to sign up for research, thesis and dissertation credits as applicable. The program also encourages completion of elective seminars offered in Developmental and other programs that complement or enhance student specializations. Recommended sequence and terminal program deadlines for non-course requirements For graduation in 5 years, the Developmental program recommends the following sequence: First-Year Project Completed at the end of the first year Master s Thesis Proposed and defended during the second or third year Preliminary Exam Completed during the third or fourth year Dissertation Proposed and defended during the fourth or fifth year
2 2 The program maintains the following recommended and terminal deadlines: First Year Project The program accepts the first-year project presentation terminal deadline imposed by the Department of Psychology: First week of classes in August of the student s second year. MA Thesis Defense Recommended deadline, MA Thesis defense April 10 th, third year This deadline is in time for May graduation* Terminal deadline, MA Thesis defense July 13 th, third year This deadline is in time for August graduation* Preliminary Examination Recommended deadline August, at the start of the 4 th year Terminal deadline January of the 4 th year Dissertation Defense Although the terminal deadline is graduation in August, the program recommends graduation in May. Recommended deadline, Dissertation defense April 10 th, fifth year This deadline is in time for May graduation* Terminal deadline, Dissertation defense July 13 th, fifth year The terminal deadline is in time for August graduation* *Note that the deadlines of 4/10 and 7/13 are Graduate School deadlines as of Students should check these deadlines with the Graduate School as they get closer to their defense meetings, to ensure they have not changed. Note also that preliminary checks by the Graduate School of the master s thesis and dissertation documents occur earlier than the defense deadlines. Students should consult the Graduate School for these formatting check deadlines. Students who miss a terminal deadline will automatically be considered not in good standing. Students not in good standing may lose their funding and/or may be asked to leave the program. For further discussion of good standing, see Evaluation Criteria, Funding, and Supplementary Evaluations, below. In rare circumstances, students may request an extension of a terminal deadline. Students should request an extension form from the program director and the request will be considered by the Developmental Faculty. Faculty will consider the student s progress in the program to date and the potential for the student to meet a new deadline, assuming that the request does not conflict with the Graduate School deadlines. ANNUAL EVALUATIONS OF STUDENT PROGRESS BY PROGRAM FACULTY The Developmental Program asks students to submit annual reports of accomplishments and activities. Such annual reporting is expected of faculty members and is often used for merit pay increases and recommendations for awards. Student annual reporting allows students to begin
3 3 such professional development practices and provides needed information to faculty for assessing student progress. Student annual reports are read by program faculty and feedback is provided through a program letter, and further information from the advisor. Primary annual evaluations of student progress are conducted by program faculty in the first part of May. In preparation, all students submit specific information according to their year in the program (see below) by the last week in April. Additional information about any student can be submitted by faculty who are inside and outside of the program who may have had direct contact with the student (e.g., supervising class work, teaching, or other activities). Annual Report: Developmental Program Students in Years 1, 2, & 3 Please your annual report and a copy of your Curriculum Vitae (CV) to the Developmental Psychology program director by the last week in April. The following form is an annual report of your activities and accomplishments during the past year (e.g., ). This report is used for a variety of reasons: to inform the developmental program faculty of your activities and achievements, to maintain a record of your progress through the requirements of the program, to supply a personal record for you. If you need any information regarding these questions, please feel free to contact the program director or any other developmental faculty member. Name: Major Advisor: Year Entered the Program: Please provide information regarding all items and where relevant list faculty most closely associated with each. 1. Papers o Published or in press (list coauthors and place of publication) o Submitted (list coauthors and place submitted) 2. Presentations o At conferences (list co-authors); did the department or university provide any financial support to enable you to attend? o At departmental meetings (e.g., lunch meetings). 3. Research projects underway (include supervisor) 4. Courses taken, by semester (e.g., Fall 2014, Spring 2015), grades received (if Spring grades are known at this time).
4 4 5. Techniques learned (e.g., programming, statistical techniques, analyses). 6. Requirements satisfied (e.g., first-year project, master s thesis proposal, master s thesis defense, prelim exams). 7. Teaching (TA, grader, tutoring, etc.). 8. Departmental, university, or other service of any type. 9A. Honors and Awards received including external research support from prizes, student competitions, or regular grant proposals. 9B. Note any external funds applied for that weren t funded. 10A. Next departmental and/or Graduate School milestone (e.g., MA defense, prelim exams) 10B. Target date, earliest possible and latest likely dates for satisfying next requirement (if target date does not meet a deadline, explain). Specify your current plans for satisfying this requirement. 11. Plans for summer not covered by preceding categories. 12. Plans for the upcoming academic year not covered by preceding categories. In particular, what courses do you plan to take next year? Also describe any other relevant plans beyond coursework. Annual Report: Developmental Program Students in Year 4 and Year 5 (who will not complete the Ph.D. requirements in current year) Please prepare a copy of your CV and a statement that describes (1) your program of research; (2) your teaching philosophy and experience; and (3) your service to the department, University, and community; and (4) your goals for the next 1-2 years. Please all materials to the program director by the last week in April. Annual Report: Developmental Program Degree-Seeking Students Students who will complete final degree requirements by August of current year Please a copy of your CV and placement information to the program director and to Judy Stewart by the last week in April. Evaluation of Annual Reports Faculty will gather all relevant materials described above and will evaluate progress based on the following expectations:
5 5 Year 1 Successful completion of all first year courses Progress on first year project Student meets or exceeds expectations in TA responsibilities, if required Involvement in research: Student is thoroughly engaged in research advisor s laboratory Student is performing lab tasks at a level that meets or exceeds what is typically expected of a first-year student as assessed by advisor Student is developing increasing proficiency with the techniques of data collection, management and analysis for the research in the advisor s lab Student is immersing him or herself in the literature base surrounding the research produced by the laboratory Student is showing increased research-related efficacy Student is taking on increased leadership responsibilities as expected by the advisor (e.g., supervising undergraduates, leading or co-leading meetings or other activities, trouble-shooting or problem-solving with the assistance of the advisor, but within the limits indicated by the advisor) Student should be showing some independence of thought regarding new research ideas or in critiques of research issues as they arise in the lab Student should be showing increasing initiative in activities related to the productivity of the lab Written and oral skills meet or exceed expectations Student is responsive to feedback about written work. Will complete revisions, shows ability to conceptualize abstract information and summarize knowledge in the field. Student begins co-authorship and submission of papers and presentations, if appropriate Work Habits: Student demonstrates a willingness to work Student is responsive to advisor feedback about work habits
6 6 Student strives to maintain good peer relations in the lab Professionalism: Student behaves in a manner consistent with openness to inquiry and the scientific enterprise Student demonstrates ethical behavior in interacting with or discussing undergraduates, graduate student peers, and faculty Student demonstrates understanding of the content of the APA Ethical Code of Conduct for research and should pass the online Human Subjects training certificate program (CITI) as part of orientation administered by the department. A copy of the CITI certificate should be placed in the student s department file. Student demonstrates respect for others by attending and by being punctual to classes, meetings, and departmental and program events; by informing relevant persons if absence is anticipated; by arriving prepared for classes and meetings, and by considering the needs of the group. Student demonstrates a professional demeanor in how s/he speaks to and treats others, in being a team player, contributing to the community and intellectual life of the department. Year 2 Successful completion of all second year courses Presentation of first year project Student meets expectations in TA responsibilities, if required Continuing and deepening of Involvement in Research as described above, with additional emphasis on co-authorship and submission of papers and presentations. Continuing Professionalism as described above Successful proposal of Master s Thesis project Year 3 Successful completion of all third year courses Student meets expectations in TA responsibilities, if required Continuing and deepening of Involvement in Research as described above, with additional emphasis on co-authorship and submission of papers and presentations. Continuing Professionalism as described above.
7 7 Successful defense of Master s Thesis project, with submission of the project for publication. The terminal deadline for the defense is July 13th, third year. Progress toward the preliminary examination Year 4 Successful completion of fourth year courses, if any Student meets expectations in TA/IOR responsibilities, if required Continuing and deepening of Involvement in Research as described above, with additional emphasis on first-authorship and co-authorship of papers and presentations. Continuing Professionalism as described above Successful completion of the preliminary examination. The terminal deadline for the preliminary examination is January of the 4 th year. Progress on the dissertation proposal Year 5 Student meets or exceeds expectations in TA responsibilities or IOR responsibilities Continuing and deepening of Involvement in Research as described above, with additional emphasis on first-authorship and co-authorship of papers and presentations. Continuing Professionalism as described above Successful defense of the dissertation in time for May or August graduation. The terminal date is July 13 th, fifth year, which is the deadline for August graduation. Result of the Annual Evaluation The result of each annual evaluation will be a determination of whether each student is in good standing with respect to progress in coursework and research, teaching, and service. Program faculty will review each student s progress with respect to deadlines, as well as other qualitative information, and will collectively determine if the student will be considered to be in good standing. The program director will write a letter to the student, briefly stating whether the student is in good standing and whether funding will continue for the next year. The letter will also note student strengths as well as suggestions or recommendations related to areas of coursework, research, teaching, service and goals. Copies of the program summary will be
8 8 submitted to the advisor and department for inclusion in the student s department file. The student s advisor will supplement the program letter with more detailed feedback. The student will have an opportunity to respond to the written evaluation if he or she so chooses. Students not in good standing will have 30 days to appeal their status to the Graduate Curriculum Committee. To appeal, students should first meet with their advisor. If the matter remains unsettled, students may then write a letter to the program director. If students are still unsatisfied, they may appeal to the Graduate Committee. For students not in good standing, the letter written by the advisor must contain a specific plan agreed to by the program, advisor, and the student that specifies how the student can regain good standing. The plan would need to detail specific strategies and deadlines for completing any unmet requirements, along with a date for regaining good standing status, provided that the student has satisfied the stated requirements. The letter must also clearly state the consequences and the date they will occur should the student not meet the stated requirements. Generally, evidence of improvement must be demonstrated within three months of the determination of not in good standing. Any improvement plans, including outcomes and dates, must be approved by the program director and the graduate committee before the letter is sent to the student. A student not in good standing may have funding removed for part or all of a current or upcoming semester or year and might also be asked to leave the program and department. A date must be stated by which funding will be removed and the student asked to leave. Generally, funding would be stopped three months after the negative evaluation, if there is not enough evidence of improvement. The student may also be asked to leave the program at this time. In the early August following the annual evaluation, a supplementary evaluation will be conducted to gauge progress of students who have previously been determined to be not in good standing. Feedback letters written by the program director regarding progress toward goals will be sent to these students and copies placed in their department files. FUNDING Funding is guaranteed for the first through fifth years provided the student remains in good standing. A student not in good standing may have funding removed for part or all of a current or upcoming semester or year and might also be asked to leave the program and department. A date must be stated by which funding will be removed and the student asked to leave. Requests for department funding in a student s 6 th year will be considered for students in good standing who have been actively involved in research but who anticipate needing more time to complete the dissertation and produce publications. These requests will be first approved by the advisor and the program and then submitted for final approval to the Graduate Curriculum Committee. A compelling rationale as well as a detailed plan and timeline for completion must be included in the request. Requests are due to the Director of Graduate studies by December 1st of the 5th year of a student s program. Note that discussions between advisors and students about remaining in residence beyond the 5 th year should occur at the end of the 4 th year.
9 9 Furthermore, the program should be informed of potential 6 th year plans at the student s 4 th year evaluation meeting, when discussing student 4 th year progress. If funded by the department in their 6 th year, students typically will be expected to meet the April 11 th deadline for the defense, in time for graduation in May. If circumstances of the dissertation work require additional time into the summer (with completion of the terminal deadline of July 13 th for the defense, followed by graduation in August), continuance of funding into the summer will be considered. However, this summer contingency must be anticipated in the plan submitted the prior December. INVITATION TO THE PH.D. The program will also conduct a specific advancement to Ph.D. work evaluation of every student in the program within 4 weeks of a student s successful defense of the master s thesis or at the end of three academic years in the program. The evaluation will be based on prior annual evaluations, the master s project, the CV, grades, research, teaching, and service. The program will determine if the student should proceed with additional preparation for the Ph.D. or should terminate at the point of evaluation (which may include a master s degree). If there is at least a clear majority vote, the program director will complete a brief letter summarizing the faculty s judgment and the factors most relevant to this judgment. The original goes to the student and copies go to the advisor, and the student s department file. If there was not at least a clear majority vote then the case would be forwarded to the Graduate Committee for review before the student is permitted to proceed with work specific to the Ph.D. (e.g., prelim preparation). In such a case, all program faculty would prepare written justification for their votes. These justifications are provided to the Graduate Committee with other supporting documents (e.g., program standards and procedures, annual reports, transcript) prior to the meeting to review the case. Students may not proceed to doctoral work until the Graduate Committee reviews the case. PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION The doctoral preliminary examination is an exam in the major field of study, developmental psychology. Its purpose is to assess students knowledge of their area of specialization within psychology. The form indicating intention to take prelims is due 6 weeks before the prelim dates (see forms packet). There are three options for prelims: (a) a two day written exam; (b) writing a grant proposal to a major funding agency; and (c) a concept paper. Written examination Written exams are administered twice a year, on a Monday and Tuesday morning the week before classes begin in the fall and spring semesters. Exams last for four hours each day.
10 10 Students are typically asked to write on two questions (one required question and one of two optional questions) during each day of this exam. A preliminary exam committee will grade the exams. Students use an ID number so that they remain anonymous to the graders. The committee will consist of at least two faculty members from the developmental program. Students will be notified within three weeks after the test date regarding their performance. The readers assign a score to each exam question, using the following six point scale: 6 - Excellent performance, highest pass 5 - Good performance, high pass 4 - Average performance, pass Cut off point, minimal pass 3 - Below average performance, "high fail" 2 - Poor performance, fail 1 - Very poor performance, low fail The average of the two examiners' scores across all questions serves as the overall exam grade. If a student receives an overall grade exceeding 3.5 and receives an average score of at least 3.5 on 3 of the 4 questions contained in the exam, he or she passes the written prelims. Faculty will write comments highlighting strengths and weaknesses in students answers. Students will also be told of a pass or not pass decision. The comments and decision are to be included with the letter summarizing students performance. Students who fail more than one question on the exams will fail the preliminary exam, even if their overall average was higher than 3.5. Thus, a student may fail by receiving an overall average lower than 3.5 or receiving failing scores on more than one question. Students who fail preliminary exams may request to see the scores they received, averaged across readers (but not averaged across components of the exam). This, we believe will enable students to identify particular strengths and weaknesses as well as how far below a minimal pass (i.e., 3.5) their performance was. A student who fails the written preliminary examination may take it once more. Grant writing option: Criteria and Guidelines Overview of process
11 11 The student who wishes to use this prelim option must: Give a prospectus to the Program Faculty by May 1 (for August prelims) and by Sept. 1 (for January prelims). The faculty must approve the prospectus for the student to proceed. These are the only two possible dates, to coincide with other prelim times. The student can have no feedback on the writing of the prospectus. First draft is handed in. The option to revise (with feedback) is given to everyone. But anyone may decline to revise. If the student decides not to revise, she or he can take the standard written prelim exam. (If switching to the written prelim, the student will have only one attempt to pass this written exam). Second draft is handed in. The student either passes or fails. The student may not select another prelim option. The failure is final. Qualifications and specific procedures The student may choose to write a major grant, essentially proposing the planned doctoral research project. The grant must be approved by the advisor. The intention is that the grant will then later be submitted for review to a major funding agency, such as NIMH, NICHD, IES (Institute for Education Sciences), NSF, or foundations such as the Spencer Foundation, and William T. Grant Foundation. The justification for this option for prelims includes: (a) the student will learn skills that are important preparation for becoming a faculty member, (2) completing this option will further promote the independence of the student as an investigator, and (3) working on this option will advance the student s capacity to think as a reviewer would think in evaluating advanced professional products. The student should consult relevant grant application criteria, and follow the recommendations for submitting an application. At the same time, as applications often involve many elements (e.g., training plans, applicant background, sponsor and institutional environment), the prelim will focus on the preparation of a research proposal by the student and an evaluation of this proposal by the faculty. The evaluation of proposals will consider the following criteria, which are commonly evaluated for NIH and other actual grant applications: (1) Significance: Does this study address an important problem? If the aims of the application are achieved, how will scientific knowledge be advanced? What will be the effect of this study on the concepts and methods that drive the field? (2) Approach: Are the conceptual framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed, well-integrated, and appropriate to the aims of the project? Does the applicant acknowledge potential problem areas and consider alternative tactics? (3) Innovation: Does the project employ novel concepts, approaches, or methods? Are the aims original and innovative? Does the project challenge existing paradigms or develop new methodologies or technologies?
12 12 Evaluation will focus on a brief overall evaluation of the merits of the proposal. Evaluation of these criteria will take into account that the application is for an F31 (predoc), F32 (postdoc) or other student initiated project, rather than a R01 (investigator initiated project). At the same time, a defensible approach to the proposal along these lines is expected. The advisor is encouraged to further help with the proposal after the prelim has been passed, for purposes of submission to funding agencies. The goal of the grant can be predoctoral support (while writing dissertation) or postdoctoral support. The key criterion is that the proposal represents a credible effort towards obtaining funding. Two faculty members (who are not the candidate s advisor) will evaluate the grant independently and assign a score, as for other prelim tests. These faculty members will evaluate the grant proposal using the same 6 pt. scale as used for the written exam option. The average of the two examiners' scores serves as the overall exam grade. If a student receives an overall grade exceeding 3.5, he or she passes the prelims. Students will be told of a pass or not pass decision. Faculty will also write comments highlighting strengths and weaknesses in the grant proposal. Such can be used to improve a failing grant, and also will be valuable towards improving the document for submission to a funding agency. These comments are to be included with the letter summarizing the student s performance. If the student passes, he or she is encouraged to submit the proposal to a funding agency. If the student fails, he or she has two options: (1) revise, using provided committee feedback, and then resubmit the grant to the same prelim committee, or (2) take the written prelims. In either option, the student will have only one opportunity to pass (i.e., only one revision of the grant, or only one attempt at written prelims). If the student does not pass the grant re-write or written prelim option, the failure is final. Note that advisors and others may not assist students in preparing their grant revision for the prelim committee. If a student elects to revise the grant, the revision is due within one month of receiving the firstround decision and feedback. Students must receive the permission of their advisors to pursue this option. This is a demanding option, and advisors are encouraged to select students that are appropriate for this option. Paper Option The developmental program provides a paper option for satisfying the candidacy examination requirement of the Doctor of Philosophy degree.
13 13 The paper option is an opportunity for students to demonstrate mastery of a significant developmental literature. The paper will normally take the form of a literature review such are published typically in Psychological Bulletin, Developmental Review, Human Development and similar periodicals devoted to review, analysis and critique of developmental theory and research. The paper option for the candidacy examination is intended to assess the student s ability to examine critically a significant developmental question in light of the extant literature. As such the paper option is an ecologically valid indicator of proficiency as a developmental scientist and member of an academic discipline. The topic of the candidacy paper should be broader than the dissertation topic. Students should approach the task as an opportunity to make a contribution to the literature (and promising candidacy examinations should be submitted for publication after feedback from the examination committee). Hence, this is a demanding option that requires the permission of the student s advisor. Advisors are encouraged to select students for whom writing an expansive scholarly paper is a suitable option. Procedure A student wishing to pursue the paper option will first secure the approval of his or her advisor. The student will then form a preliminary examination committee that will include the advisor, as chair, and two additional members of the regular faculty. It is normally expected, but is not mandatory, that the prelim examination committee will serve also as the dissertation committee. The student will present a topic of investigation to the prelim examination committee, along with a minimum reading list that specifies the literature to be read for the preliminary examination. Of course, the full extent of a literature cannot be specified completely in advance of a review; but the purpose for submitting a reading list is to assure that the topic selected is of sufficient breadth and maturity to warrant the critical examination of a literature review. The topic and reading list requires the approval of the preliminary examination committee. Upon approval of the topic, the student will have 12 weeks to submit the paper to the examination committee. The evaluation of the paper will be guided by criteria typically used to appraise articles submitted for publication in a scholarly journal. Two faculty members (who are not the candidate s advisor) will evaluate the paper independently and assign a score, as for other prelim tests.
14 14 These faculty members will evaluate the paper using the same 6 pt. scale as used for the written exam option. The average of the two examiners' scores serves as the overall exam grade. The minimum passing score is the overall rating of 3.5. Faculty will write comments highlighting strengths and weaknesses of the paper, along with suggestions towards improving the document so that it is suitable for re-submission to the committee and/or eventual submission for publication. The comments and decision are to be included with the letter summarizing students performance. Students who do not receive an average grade of 3.5 or above (and hence do not pass the examination) will be given an opportunity to revise and resubmit the paper. Students are expected to use the committee reviews as a foundation for their revision for the committee. If the student chooses, he or she may instead opt to take written prelims at this point. In either case, the student will have only one opportunity to pass (i.e., one revision of the paper or one attempt at the written prelim exam). If the student does not pass the revision of the paper, or the single attempt at the written prelim, the failure is final. Revised prelim papers are due within four weeks of receipt of the feedback letter (or as specified in the letter). Students who are successful in completing the paper option are encouraged to submit their paper for publication, using committee feedback where applicable.
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