Two Year General Timeline for MS Degree

First Semester

  • Settle in
  • Start taking core courses
  • Attend department meetings
  • Attend department seminars
  • Attend listening sessions with Department Chair and DGS
  • Attend luncheons with DGS and GFA
  • Attend “Meet and Greets” with department faculty
  • Think about who will be on your Special Committee (talk with faculty!)
  • Join department committees as the graduate student representative
  • Begin Researching external fellowship opportunities for the following year

Second Semester

  • Finish taking core courses
  • Must form Special Committee (at least two members for Master's)
  • Start thinking about a Master’s thesis topic
  • Continue attending department meetings, seminars, listening sessions, etc.
  • Apply for department/Cornell/external funding for the summer and the following year

Third Semester

  • Select a Master’s thesis topic with your Special Committee and start researching it
  • Start taking major and minor area courses
  • Continue socialization within department and with your outside research area(s)
  • Apply for external fellowships to fund field research next year

Fourth Semester / Summer

  • Continuing taking major and minor area courses
  • Continue with in-depth research and begin writing your Master’s thesis
  • Continue socialization within department and with your outside research area(s)
  • Apply for department/Cornell funding for the summer and the following year (if you are not doing field research)
  • Start discussing a date for your Master’s thesis defense with your Special Committee
  • Finish writing thesis and sit for defense!
  • Submit thesis for degree conferral