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FGS will inform the guests of the attendance regulations when they have been approved. At the beginning of the oral exam the neutral chair will inform all in attendance of the regulations:
In the master’s thesis route, the supervisor chairs the oral examinations for the proposal and the final thesis. The entire oral examination, including the presentation by the student and the period of questioning should normally not be longer than 1.5 hours.
The chair for the master’s proposal and thesis oral examinations is there to ensure that policies and procedures are correctly followed during and after the oral examination, guard against perceived conflict of interest or undue influence, uphold the integrity and fairness of the process and maintain the timing of the meeting.
In the doctoral program, a neutral chair is selected by the FGS for both the candidacy and final dissertation oral examinations. The entire oral examination, including the presentation by the student and the period of questioning should not normally be longer than two hours. The neutral chair is not a member of the examination committee. The nature of their background, being from outside the academic unit of the student who is undergoing the oral examination, allows an objective observation of the proceedings. They do not read the dissertation, participate in the discussion about the dissertation, or vote.
The role of the neutral chair is to:
The Order of the Proceedings for the Oral Examinations for the Chair or Neutral Chair. (In this section the title ‘chair’ will denote the individual chairing the examination for the master’s or doctoral programs.)
A script is provided by FGS for the chair to follow to ensure all oral exams follow consistent procedures. Below is an outline of the process. Before the oral examination officially begins, the chair verifies that:
The chair welcomes all of those in attendance and may congratulate the student on arriving at this milestone in their program.
The chair impresses upon the student and the examiners that this is a formal examination. The chair then proceeds to provide information on the order of the proceedings as outlined below:
For the master’s oral examinations, the supervisor and the committee completes the Master’s Thesis Proposal Oral Examination Report for the proposal or the Master’s Thesis Oral Examination Final Report for the final thesis oral examination.
For the candidacy oral examination, the supervisor is responsible for ensuring the committee members indicate their adjudication decision and comments on the form Final Report of Candidacy Oral Examination and Proposal and that the form is submitted to the FGS as soon after the oral examination as possible.
For the final dissertation oral examination, the supervisor and the examination committee complete the Dissertation and Oral Examination Final Report. It is the supervisor’s responsibility to ensure that all committee members indicate their decision on the form and that the form is submitted to the FGS as soon as possible. The Neutral Chair must complete the Report of the Neutral Chair and submit it to FGS as soon after the oral examination as possible.
Updated November 08, 2019 by Student & Academic Services