Master’s Degree Defence

For the Master’s degree there is the requirement for defense of the thesis. The Examining Committee will consist of the candidate’s committee and is open to all students and Faculty. An external examiner is appointed to the Examination Committee. This examination may serve as the Preliminary Examination for candidates contemplating continuing on a PhD program and, in this case, would be more comprehensive in nature similar to the PhD Preliminary Examination.
Committee composition

The master’s thesis examination committee should be comprised of the supervisory committee plus an additional departmental examiner if needed (see below) and one person not involved in the thesis supervision. The departmental examiner and the “examiner not involved in supervision” may be the same person. (GPS require that the examination committee include, at minimum, the supervisor and one person not involved in the thesis supervision.)

Departmental examiner
All examination committees should include someone who can serve the function of the departmental examiner, i.e., who can help ensure that the exam conforms to IRES norms and expectations. The departmental examiner should be an IRES core faculty member or faculty associate. When the supervisory committee includes an IRES core or CA faculty member (i.e., almost all cases), no additional departmental examiner is needed. Otherwise, a departmental examiner is required. The supervisor should identify the most appropriate core or faculty associate member to serve as departmental examiner, based on the student’s research topic.

Examination chair
The chair of the master’s thesis defense (examination) should be a member of the examination committee who is also an IRES core or faculty associate member.
Extra-departmental member
GPS recommends that at least 1 member of the examining committee be from another graduate program.