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Prior to First Semester

  • Identify a general area of study interest
  • Identify an academic and research advisor

First Semester

  • Take formal coursework. Credit load may vary depending on time commitments for teaching or research assistantships
  • Become familiar with nutrition facilities and programs
  • Develop a plan of study in conjunction with advisor
  • Identify an area of thesis research interest in conjunction with advisor
  • Identify members of the M.S. Thesis Committee
  • In conjunction with advisor determine opportunities for research and/or field experiences

Second Semester

  • Take formal coursework
  • Schedule M.S. Thesis committee meeting during the semester to:
    - Discuss and develop a specific Thesis topic and a plan of action for its completion
    - Discuss progress made in coursework and any courses the committee feels are necessary for the student to take
  • By the end of the second semester a detailed thesis research proposal should be written and submitted to the thesis committee.
  • Begin thesis research as early as appropriate

Third Semester

  • Take formal coursework
  • Continue thesis research. Determine journals and other media which would be most appropriate to publish findings of research

Fourth Semester

  • Continue formal coursework as required to complete plan of study
  • Complete thesis research and write thesis
  • Schedule public seminar and final oral defense of thesis with committee. This should be scheduled at least two weeks in advance
  • Prepare final draft (from thesis) of journal article(s), and as appropriate, other types of publications
  • Graduate


During the summer, students are expected to pursue thesis research and participate in Regional or National professional meetings as appropriate. Students are expected to attend GPN Colloquium and all seminars hosted by the Department of Nutritional Sciences.

Although the graduate program and admissions committee believes that research projects should commence no later than the second semester, it is appropriate to begin research earlier, particularly if a research project has already been identified by the advisor/research mentor.