The Supervisory Committee

The supervisory committee will generally consist of yourself and two or three other faculty members. Its role is to provide support to you and your student by broadening and deepening the range of expertise and experience available, and by offering advice about, and assessment of, your student’s work.
The supervisory committee is responsible for guiding the student in selecting any required courses, planning the research, and preparing the thesis.

Graduate students who establish their supervisory committees early in their programs and who meet with their committees regularly, tend to complete their degree programs successfully, and sooner than students who wait to establish their committees or meet with them infrequently. The student’s progress since the last committee and expectations for progress by the time of the next committee meeting should be clearly identified during the committee meeting and in the meeting report. This will assist you in determining the degree of intervention you may need to ensure that the student makes good progress through completion of their program.

Assembling the Committee

In general, a supervisory committee should be established as soon as you and the student agree on a thesis topic. Generally, the graduate student and supervisor together decide on an appropriate committee structure, based largely on the research interests and areas of expertise of individual professors. You should check UBC Policies and Procedures to ensure that potential members meet all UBC requirements.

The student, supervisor, or graduate advisor approach potential committee members to determine if they are available and interested in serving on a supervisory committee.