Steps to a Graduate Degree

Getting into the INP program is the start of a great adventure. However, it's only the first of many steps. Below is a brief description of the major steps leading to a graduate degree in nutrition.

Selecting a Major Professor

The major emphasis in our graduate programs is on research conducted under the supervision of a member of INP. When you select your major professor you will need to match your interest to the research conducted by an INP faculty member. Upon admission, you can directly enter a professor's laboratory or you can choose to rotate through several laboratories during the first semester so that you can evaluate several different research programs. Regardless, you'll select a major professor by the end of your first year in the program.

Selecting a Graduate Committee

The graduate committee helps you and your major professor guide your training in the classroom and the laboratory. At the PhD level, it consists of your major professor and at least three other faculty members — at least one member must be from outside of the department of your major professor. At the MS level, the committee consists of your major professor and two additional faculty members. You'll select your graduate committee within the first semester for MS students and within the first year for PhD students.

Preliminary Exam

Upon completion of most of your coursework, PhD students will take a comprehensive oral and written preliminary exam that is prepared by their graduate committee. Only students who pass the preliminary exam may continue in the program.

Thesis/Dissertation Research

Research is at the core of our MS and PhD degrees. Even as you take courses, you'll be conducting research under the mentorship of your major professor. When you've completed your research project, you will write a thesis (MS candidates) or a dissertation (PhD candidates). Before you complete your degree, you will defend your thesis/dissertation in front of your graduate committee members.

Department of Nutrition Science, 700 W. State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2059 (765) 494-8228, Fax: (765) 494-0674

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