Students must have a prospectus (dissertation proposal) approved by their committee no later than the end of the fourth year of study, which falls on the last date of the 16th quarter. Any student not meeting this milestone will be considered “not in good standing” and therefore will be placed on probation. A petition may be approved by The Graduate School (TGS) under certain circumstances, such as medical or family leave.
The prospectus must be approved by a faculty committee. A minimum of three individuals must serve on the prospectus committee. At least two members of this committee, including the chair, must be members of the Northwestern University Graduate Faculty.
The student must submit the Ph.D. Prospectus form through TGS Forms in CAESAR. The program must approve this form online before TGS enters the final approval. Students are notified via email by TGS of approval of their Prospectus form.