Schumer lab:Grad program

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Here is some information compiled to help make the degree progress process as smooth as possible!

  • A Stanford requirement is that you take 3 units with 4 faculty. One of those sets of units will be your first year seminar class with Marc, another will be units you take for research credit with Molly. Since you have to teach twice, it is super important that you make sure to record these units with **other** faculty that are not Marc or Molly
  • This is not an issue if you are also taking additional courses

Yearly requirements

  • Make sure to complete your IDP with Molly each year and submit it on GST
  • Make sure you are signing up for research credits as needed to accumulate 135 units by your fourth year. Talk to Student Services about your plan for this

First year

  • First year committee meeting
  • First year paper
  • First year talk


For EcoEvo you are expected to prepare the following:

  • 40-50 minute presentation of your dissertation plan and preliminary results. Be prepared to be stopped for questions, the whole presentation with questions will take about two hours.

Schedule at least one practice with Molly and at least one practice with the lab

  • A written document describing your plan for each chapter. This should include 3-4 chapters, each expected to result in a publication.

Plan to have this written document completed >1 month before your qualifying exam. Molly will give you multiple rounds of comments. You should also schedule one-on-one meetings with each member of your committee ~2 weeks before your qualifying exam and send them this document a few days before. This way you will be able to incorporate their feedback before your exam.

There are example qualifying exam proposals and presentations in Box, check them out:


Other important info

  • One you advance to candidacy you have a 6 year window to graduate
  • This can include up to 8 quarters on leave

Reading committee & Defense

  • Your reading committee must include four faculty (including Molly)
  • You can have external people (non-University) on your reading committee, but you need to fill out a form that you can get from the Student Services office and send in the external member's CV
  • For your actual defense you will need a 5th person outside of the department. This is often difficult to arrange so start thinking about and asking people it early!
  • People in Biology frequently ask faculty in Genetics but it can be any non-Biology department