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Policies

The College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA) Office of Graduate Education serves as a point of contact for LSA policies and procedures.  

The Office of Graduate Education helps administer and assist LSA graduate programs with the following policies and procedures:

Continuous Enrollment Policy

A Continuous Enrollment Policy for students in Rackham Ph.D. programs became effective Fall Term 2010.  The policy requires that all doctoral students register each Fall and Winter semester until they have completed their degree, unless they are taking an official leave of absence. 

Spring/Summer registration is required only for students who are taking or auditing courses, taking preliminary examinations, or defending the dissertation; the same activities that require a spring/summer registration under current practice.

The College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA) supported this change in enrollment policy because of the many benefits it provides to students, including keeping students engaged with faculty advisors and dissertation committees, increasing the number of doctoral degree completions, and offering year-round access to services for graduate students.

Graduate students should work with their home department or program if they have questions regarding this policy.

Graduate Students Teaching as Instructor of Record

The College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA) accepts applications to allow graduate students to teach as instructors of record in established courses, or courses of their own design, at the 300/400 level across the College.

For more information, please visit the page under TEACHING on this site.

LSA Responsible Conduct of Research and Scholarship

The Responsible Conduct of Research and Scholarship (RCRS) is part of the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts’ and the University of Michigan’s commitment to fostering and upholding the highest ethical standards in the conduct of research and scholarship as well as following all federal and state guidelines regarding RCRS training.

For more information, please visit the subpage on this site.

LSA Transitional Funding Support Program

About

The LSA Transitional Funding Support Program was created to reduce and mitigate the power imbalance in the trainee-mentor relationship. It provides immediate financial support for Master’s and PhD trainees who are dependent upon a faculty adviser for funding (i.e. GSRA), so that a trainee can exit a harassing or abusive relationship and transition to a new advisor without losing continuity in financial support.

LSA is committed to creating a climate that is free of sexual and gender-based harassment. Harassment, abuse, and other forms of extreme harm also can and do occur in situations where the trainee is not directly funded by a research advisor. In these cases, the trainee should seek support from their department to find a new research advisor. Regardless of the trainee’s funding situation, all departments are expected to assist graduate students who choose to change faculty advisors, whether to exit a harassing situation or for any other reason, and should communicate to trainees the departmental process for changing research advisers. 

LSA Transitional Funding Support Program

  1. LSA guarantees one semester of transitional funding to any Master’s or PhD trainee, leaving a harassing, abusive, or harmful trainee-advisor relationship. Additional transitional funding, including summer funding, may be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  2. LSA trainees who receive funding (e.g. GSRA) from a faculty advisor to conduct scholarship as part of their degree completion are eligible. Trainees from other colleges and schools working with LSA faculty should seek support from their home unit.
  3. Transitional funding is intended to support the trainees’ continued progress to degree, while conforming to the normal graduate funding model within the unit. A trainee who would normally expect to receive a departmental fellowship or GSI during the transition period would do so. Self-funded Master’s students who are not directly dependent on a faculty adviser for funding as part of their degree completion are not eligible for transitional funding.
  4. The transitional funding can be used to support the trainees’ search for a new advisor or to support work with a new advisor that doesn’t currently have funding.
  5. Master’s and PhD trainees who receive transitional funding should be granted academic accommodations as appropriate, including flexibility around times to degree and other academic milestones.  

 

Process for Requesting LSA Transitional Funding Support

Transitional support can be requested at any time. Master's and PhD trainees should contact LSA’s Manager of Graduate Education (MGE), Paula Hathaway (ptrail@umich.edu), who will serve as an advocate for trainees.

  • The MGE will review the trainee’s specific situation and provide them with information about their options. The meeting will be treated with discretion and no proof of a harassing or abusing relationship will be necessary for transitional support. The meeting does not constitute a formal report of harassment nor is it an opportunity to seek counseling and conflict resolution. Any type of harassment, including racial, and sexual and gender based harassment, should be reported to the Equity, Civil Rights and Title IX Office (ECRT). Counseling and other types of support should be sought through Rackham’s Resolution Office and/or Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).
  • The MGE and divisional AD will then work with department leadership to facilitate the trainees’ smooth transition between advisors, including management of the trainees’ ongoing research projects. UM prohibits retaliation against any student, staff or faculty member who makes a good faith report. The AD and chair will let the faculty adviser know that retaliation of any kind will not be tolerated and will check in with the trainee to confirm that no retaliative actions have occurred. Retaliation of any kind against a trainee will not be tolerated and should be immediately reported to the divisional AD. 

Questions?

Contact Paula Hathaway, Manager of Graduate Education: ptrail@umich.edu

Ten-Term Rule

In order to strongly encourage, if not compel, departments to organize their graduate programs so that a decently prepared entering graduate student can complete the Ph.D. degree in a reasonable time, the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA) instituted a policy stating that the College will provide no more than ten terms (5 years) of funding.

The rule applies to any graduate student support that comes from College General Funds. That primarily means GSI support, GSRA support in the museums, and Regents' fellowship support. It does not include Block grant funds from Rackham, GSRA positions on externally-funded grants, terms of support on externally-funded fellowships, training grants, or Rackham Regents fellowships.

A term of support from any LSA unit is included toward the 10 terms.

For more information or questions on this policy, graduate students should connect with their home department/program.