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Qualifying Exam Preparation Workshop


The Qualifying Exam is a major milestone in the career of any Ph.D. student, and as such it can inspire anxiety and concern. The Galois Group therefore holds a Workshop once per year to assist graduate students in preparing for the exam and help disseminate general information about the exam.

This Workshop should be of interest to anyone who has not yet passed their Qualifying Exam. Second and third year students preparing for their qualifying exam in the next year are especially encouraged to attend.

Qualifying Exam Resources

Organizer Responsibilities

The following is a list of responsibilities for the organizers of the Qualifying Exam Preparation Workshop. It should be updated each academic term as appropriate.

  • Decide upon scheduling details, including time, date, and location. The suggested timing is to hold the Workshop each year in early Winter quarter. (Consider holding it more often: is once per quarter too often? Based on feedback: consider running two separate workshops, one for GMAT and one for GGAM.)
  • If holding in Winter quarter, emails should go out to faculty and staff to plan the event by winter break.
  • Decide upon the exact format of the Workshop. The suggested format is to allocate about 15 minutes for a Department staff person to discuss the logistics of the qual and the role of staff support, and then 30-40 minutes for faculty perspectives and questions.
  • Email with the appropriate Mathematics Department staff person to reserve a room for the Workshop.
  • Ask two or more current faculty members to attend in order to given their perspective and to answer student questions. Faculty who have served on many Qualifying Exam Committees are preferred, and if might be advisable to give the faculty the List of Frequently Asked Questions about the Qualifying Exam file for use in their preparations.
  • If having a graduate student panel, email grad students. It is also a good idea to collect past qualifying exam proposals and syllabi to post to the wiki.
  • Ask a staff person from Student Services to send out an announcement email for the Workshop several times before the actual event, including the morning of. A model email has been prepared. Or you can do it yourself.
  • Ask the Galois Group for snack money, and purchase snacks appropriate to the expected turn out.
  • Update (as needed) the “Qualifying Exam Template” available via the Resources for Taking your Mathematics Ph.D. Qualifying Exam webpage.
  • Update (as needed) the list of past qualifying exam proposals and syllabi on the Members Only Resources webpage.
  • Consider having a printout of important dates/forms for attendees.
qualprep.txt · Last modified: 2024/02/15 19:38 by asimons