Supervision and Milestones on the Way to your PhD in the BIGSSS-departs Program

Supervision and PhD Milestones

In their first prorgam year, fellows participate in a field-specific proposal workshop, a class of about 5-10 students. By the end of the first semester they turn in and defend the finalized dissertation proposal publicly. Members of the dissertation committee are present and evaluate the proposal. The Supervisory Agreement will be signed upon the approved proposal. In consultation with their Academic Coordinator and the Director of Studies, fellows finalize their dissertation committee by the end of their first year. The majority of the members are members of BIGSSS faculty. One member of their dissertation committee is neither a member of the University of Bremen nor Constructor University.

From the second program year onward, the committee closely supervises the fellow's dissertation progress. In an annual Progress Assessment Colloquium (PAC), supervisors discuss with the PhD fellow the project's progress over the past year, potential questions, issues and demands related to the project as well as plans for academic activities such as research stays, conference participations, workshop organizations etc.

At the end of the third program year, about six months prior to graduation, PhD fellows meet with their dissertation committee in a Dissertation Completion Meeting (DCM) and set up a detailed work and time plan for the completion of the remaining chapters of the thesis, develop a plan for publishing the dissertation, discuss career and employment plans after graduation, and identify potential funding sources for any additional months the fellow may need to complete the dissertation.

A condensed overview over the mandatory milestones in the BIGSSS-departs PhD program can be found in the grey bow on the left (desktop version) or bottom (mobile version) of this page.


BIGSSS' Director of Studies and Academic Coordinators

At BIGSSS, the academic progress of PhD fellows is not only continually supervised by the respective dissertation committee, but also by the Director of Studies who supports you in your choice of committee members and the composition of your demand-tailored curriculum.

Furthermore, the respective Academic Coordinator advises you when planning fieldwork stays, conference participations and accessing research facililities such as software or databases.