Administrative Structure and Governance

All aspects of the graduate program will be the responsibility of the Assistant Dean for Graduate Studies, who will report directly to the Dean of Optometry.

Graduate Committee (GC)


Overall governance of the graduate program is through the Faculty Graduate Committee, of which the Assistant Dean for Graduate Studies serves as Chair. The Graduate Committee is appointed by the Faculty Council Executive Committee with the approval of the Dean of Optometry. The GC is comprised of a minimum of four faculty members who serve two-year terms. Requirements to be on the GC are the same as for a thesis committee chairperson (see below under Thesis Advisors). In addition, a graduate student representative is elected by the graduate student body for a one-year term and has voting rights on the GC. Further, the GC Chair (the Assistant Dean for Graduate Studies) has voting privileges.


The Graduate Committee oversees MS student admissions, MS course offerings, and approves faculty advisors and MS thesis projects. The GC, upon recommendation of the faculty advisor and graduate student, is responsible for forming the candidate’s thesis committee, which would in turn also become the thesis defense committee to review the finished thesis for scientific contribution and rigor. The thesis committee consists of the supervisor (i.e., the faculty advisor), and at least two other members with expertise in the candidate’s area of interest. If the thesis is found acceptable, and all course requirements are met, the GC would recommend to the Assistant Dean for Graduate Studies and the Dean of Optometry the awarding of the Master of Science in Vision Science degree.