Formation of Doctoral Committee

A doctoral committee is formed in two steps, with the first prior to the comprehensive examination and the second at the point of defending a dissertation proposal. The student initiates the formulation of the doctoral committee, usually as part of the activities in the LTEC 760 advanced seminar. 

A doctoral committee requires five members as defined by the UHM Graduate Division.

  • The chair of the doctoral committee must be a full member of the graduate faculty in the LTEC PhD program. 
  • The majority of members must be from LTEC  (three of the five members, including the chair). 
  • In addition, as required by the Graduate Division, one member must be from UHM but outside the LTEC degree program and be a full graduate faculty at the UHM with approval to serve as a University Representative (UR). Note that full graduate faculty may or may not be approved to serve as a UR by the Graduate Division. This individual is referred to as the “University member” of the committee. The university member is not required for the comprehensive examination but must be on the committee during the proposal defense and dissertation defense. In general, your chair will help you select the university member.
    • Most students select four members from LTEC. However, in some cases, one member may be from a different field related to the dissertation topic, but such members must be approved by the Department and Graduate Division. Under some conditions, this person may be from outside the College or even external to the University, but all must meet Graduate Division requirements.

Step 1: As part of the work in the advanced seminar (LTEC 760), the student interviews several faculty members,identifies a potential chair in the LTEC faculty and contacts that person to make the request.  Once a faculty member has agreed to serve as chair, the student, in consultation with the chair, identifies minimally two (or maximum three) additional LTEC faculty members to be part of the comprehensive examination process.

Step 2: After successfully completing the comprehensive examination, the chair and student identify additional committee members needed for the proposal, which must include the University Representative as described above, and if the fifth person is outside of LTEC, that person as well. The faculty members outside of LTEC are part of the proposal defense process but not the comprehensive examination.