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Graduate Seminar

Graduate Seminar Policy Statement and Goals

The graduate seminar has the following goals:

  1. Provide all graduate students with a working knowledge of professional tools for research, technical typesetting, presentation, and computation.
    (For example, using Math Reviews & Science Citation Index, internet resources, TeX-based typesetting/word processing, Powerpoint (or equivalent) presentation software, Web publishing, MATLAB for computation and graphics, guidelines for mathematical/technical writing)
  2. Develop the ability in doctoral students to read mathematical literature in journals and books.
  3. Provide to doctoral students supervised experience in assembling research background on a topic or subject and developing and delivering a presentation.
  4. Expose graduate students to a broad range of subject areas within mathematics as reflected by the interests of their colleagues and faculty members.

To realize these goals, the following requirements will apply:

  1. Doctoral students will register for one credit of graduate seminar each semester they are in residence. Masters level students will register for one credit of graduate seminar when taking the professional tools seminar (see 2 below)
  2. All graduate students must take the one semester graduate seminar in professional tools, offered once yearly. (This will be for one credit hour, meeting once weekly.) Students who have already developed expertise in using one or more of the tools involved may, at the option of the instructor, arrange for an appropriate demonstration of that expertise in lieu of attendance at the corresponding lectures.
  3. Under the supervision of their dissertation supervisor (or another faculty member if the dissertation advisor has not yet been appointed) each doctoral student will be responsible for delivering three one-period talks during their program of study. One talk will be an expository talk in an area outside their main research interest (which could, for instance be based on material in a chapter of a book, or an article in a general interest journal such as the Monthly or the Intelligencer). One talk will be a general expository talk on basic results within their research area. (Survey papers may provide a good base for assembling the information for this talk.) One talk will be an advanced research talk in the area of their dissertation, which may contain their own work. (This talk may serve as the research prospectus presentation portion of the Ph.D. qualifying examination.) If any talk is not considered satisfactory by the supervisor, an additional presentation must be made. These talks may, if appropriate, be part of an ongoing seminar within the department. A student may substitute a presentation (of at least 20 minutes) at a conference, or a poster session at a conference or at the College’s research presentation session, for one of the required talks.
  4. Doctoral students will be expected to attend 10 mathematical presentations during the academic year. These may include visiting colloquia, faculty presentations, and seminar talks, but at least half should be presentations by other doctoral students. A record of attendance will be maintained for this purpose. (The number of talks required is reduced to 5 during the year that a student takes the professional tools seminar.)
  5. Special cases that require exceptions to the above, or questions of interpretation or procedure, will be resolved by the Graduate Director, consulting with the Graduate Committee as suitable. Any such decisions may be appealed to the Graduate Committee for final adjudication.
  6. Link to Graduate Seminar Activity Form: here

    Please send any questions or comments to gradprog@math.wvu.edu.