General Information and Best Practices for DGSs and DGAs

This general information and best practices guide was developed in large part from the 2009-10 annual DGS/DGA faculty retreat discussion. It also includes advice from the Graduate School and other offices on campus who work on graduate student needs. If there are suggestions or clarifications to the information presented here, please be in touch with the Graduate School.

Benefits and Personal Considerations for Both the DGS and DGA Roles

DGSs and DGAs will often be more experienced faculty within the graduate program. Many (but not all) programs provide some type of incentive for faculty serving in administrative roles, such as course release time or salary supplements (flat amount or percentage of salary). Such responsibilities are sometimes considered in performance reviews.

Establishing a percentage of time expected to devote to these responsibilities, as balanced with your own research and teaching, is common. The percentage of time will fluctuate depending on the time of year and students' needs.

If course releases are provided in your program, consider the best timing for the release depending on your own program's cycle of activities. For example, the fall may be busy with new students and checkpoint meetings and the spring may be busier with admissions activities.

Understand critical times for these responsibilities so that you can plan for some administratively-heavy weeks, especially near the beginning and end of semesters.

Directors of Graduate Studies

Role of a DGS

Best Practices

Directors of Graduate Admissions

Role of a DGA

Best Practices

Critical Milestones in an Academic Year
Timing Events or Key Deadlines
Early July Graduate admissions opens for the following academic year cycle
Mid August Graduate School and program Orientations
Late August Graduate School Breakfast meetings for Chairs, DGSs and DGAs
Late August Deadline for application for in-state residency for fall semester
September Deadline for submitting students for fall semester tuition benefits
September-February Deadlines for nominating enrolled students for various Graduate School fellowships and awards
October Application deadline for December graduation
Mid October No spring term applications accepted beyond this date (program dates may be earlier)
Mid fall Graduate School Retreat for DGSs and DGAs
Mid November Due date for submission of theses and dissertations for December graduation
November-February Bulk of the admission application activity and closing deadline dates
Mid December Mid-Year University Commencement Ceremony
Mid December Recommended application date for full consideration of Graduate School funding eligibility
January Deadline for submitting students for spring semester tuition benefits
Mid January Deadline for application for in-state residency for spring semester
January-April Critical period for admissions selection and recruitment
Late January Deadline for nominating applicants for Graduate School recruitment fellowships and assistantships
February Application deadline for May graduation
Mid March No summer term applications accepted beyond this date (program dates may be earlier)
April Graduate School's Annual Graduate Student Recognition Celebration
Mid April Submission deadline of theses and dissertations for May graduation
April 15 Council of Graduate Schools' deadline for applicants' acceptance of financial award offers (earlier deadlines cannot be imposed on applicants)
April-May Finalize entering cohort and funding offers
Early May Doctoral Hooding Ceremony; Spring University Commencement Ceremony
Mid June No fall term applications accepted beyond this date (program dates may be earlier)
July Application deadline for August graduation
Late July Submission deadline of theses and dissertations for August graduation