Examples of Tracking Systems

Annual meeting with Graduate Advisor/Director

In programs with relatively small numbers of students, the Graduate Advisor or Director is able to meet at least annually with each student. For example:

  • MD/PhD (14 students): the Program Director meets with each student annually to review progress and the student’s proposed curriculum.

Annual progress report by student

In many programs, students are required to submit an annual progress report.

  • Art History, Visual Art and Theory: students submit a report on the coursework, thesis progress, round-table date, awards, and advisory committee meetings. (FORM)
  • Community and Regional Planning: students report on progress of their thesis or project, expected dates for submission and presentation of the project, and graduation. The supervisor then states whether or not he/she agrees that the student is making significant progress. (FORM: Thesis) (FORM: Project)

Annual progress report by supervisor

In some programs, the student's supervisor is asked to submit an annual report of the student's progress. For example:

  • Civil Engineering: in mid-April the graduate secretary asks the professors to report whether or not each of their students is making satisfactory progress. (FORM)
  • Political Science: instructors report on any students they have taught, are supervising, or have supervised as a TA. The Graduate Advisor then sends a letter to each student in January. In May the faculty meet to discuss the progress of all students, after which the Graduate Advisor sends a second letter informing each student of his/her progress. (FORM)

Annual progress reports by both student and supervisor

Some programs require annual reports from both the student and the supervisor. For example:

  • Educational Studies: student fills out a form with information and comments about his/her progress. This is reviewed by the supervisor, who identifies whether or not the student is making satisfactory progress and adds comments if necessary. (FORM)
  • Nursing: the students complete an annual report and the Graduate Advisor meets with all supervisors twice a year to go through student progress and identify any concerns and decide on appropriate intervention if necessary. (FORM)
  • Psychology: students submit an online progress report each April and supervisors draft an evaluation letter which is reviewed by the coordinator of the student's program. These letters are edited and revised by the Graduate Advisor in light of students' progress, coursework, etc. Once approved by the Graduate Advisor, students receive these evaluation letters which note and commend progress and achievements and provide warnings and deadlines, as appropriate.
  • Social Work: the student submits an annual progress report. The supervisor reviews the student’s report and fills in the second part of the form in which he/she states whether on not the student is making satisfactory progress and lists any concerns he/she may have. (FORM)

Tracking student supervisory committee meetings

Supervisory committee meetings can be used successfully to track student progress, as long as the reporting forms are designed such that they expressly require the committee to assess progress. Examples include: