Loyola University Chicago

The Graduate School

Graduate School Faculty Handbook

The Faculty of the Graduate School

The Faculty of the Graduate School is derived from the ranks of distinguished faculty members in the College of Arts and Sciences, the Schools of Education, Medicine, Nursing, and Social Work, as well as from the units reporting to the Graduate School. The Graduate School’s faculty was formed as a result of recommendations from accrediting bodies. Over the years, the definitions of Graduate Faculty status as well as the procedures for appointment have undergone changes, and further modifications of definitions and/or procedures are subject to review and recommendation by the Council of Graduate School Programs.

Description of Full and Associate Graduate Faculty Status, and Teaching/Research Affiliate

The Graduate School distinguishes between Full Graduate Faculty Status, Associate Graduate Faculty Status, and Teaching/Research Affiliate Status.

Full Graduate Faculty Status

  1. The faculty member is actively engaged in the kind of research that serves as a model for graduate students.
  2. The faculty member is actively involved with graduate students, in particular in teaching courses and directing dissertations or theses or serving on those committees.
  3. The faculty member performs the duties listed above in such a manner that the member’s department and the Graduate School have full confidence in the quality of the faculty member’s research activities and work with graduate students.
  4. If the faculty member becomes less involved in the first two areas listed above, the faculty member is considered for Associate Graduate Faculty status.
  5. While successful involvement in graduate student direction, dissertation load, number of boards, and frequency of course offerings do not automatically entail a reduction in teaching load, these considerations are to be taken into account when determining teaching loads.

Associate Graduate Faculty Status

  1. The faculty member is or has been involved in research activities, but either is in the initial stages of research or has become notably less active or productive in this regard.
  2. The faculty member has limited contact with graduate students, teaching few graduate courses, directing few (or, in some departments, no) theses and no dissertations, serving on few committees, and performing routine rather than specialized departmental graduate duties.
  3. When circumstances allow fuller participation in research and graduate education, as described under Full Graduate Faculty Status, the faculty member is eligible for consideration for full Graduate Faculty status.

Teaching/Research Affiliate Status

There are members of the university or part-time faculty who may be called upon to teach graduate courses periodically and/or they conduct research in a specialized area of interest to the graduate faculty and students. These individuals may not otherwise meet the criteria for appointment to the Graduate Faculty as a Full or Associate member. Thus, a designation of Teaching/Research Affiliate of the Graduate School was created. The Teaching/Research Affiliate designation may or may not carry a formal appointment to the Faculty of the Graduate School.

A Teaching/Research Affiliate for the Graduate School

  1. Holds the terminal degree in their respective discipline;
  2. Has recognized substantive expertise in a specific topic area;
  3. Will periodically teach graduate courses in programs under the jurisdiction of the Graduate School and/or conduct research in a specialized area of interest to the graduate faculty and students

Teaching/Research Affiliates of the Graduate School. may be called upon for committee membership if their expertise would contribute to the student's research and committee composition. This situation is dealt with separately at the time of thesis or dissertation committee formation.

Recommendations for Teaching/Research Affiliate to the Graduate School originate from the department or school in which the expertise is appropriate. Materials to be submitted include a recommendation from the dean of the College or School stating the role that they will have with the students and the individual's curriculum vitae.

Emeritus Appointments

The honor of emeritus or emerita status may be awarded by the Senior Academic Officer upon the recommendation of the departmental chairperson, if applicable, and the dean, to a full-time member of the regular faculty upon the faculty member's retirement from Loyola after having rendered distinguished service to Loyola for at least ten years. The title of Loyola Emeritus/Emerita is held indefinitely, unless the faculty member is emplpyed on a full-time basis at another educational institution. Additional information regarding the rights and responsibilities of Emeritus faculty is available in the Emeriti Statement of Privileges.

Faculty who achieve emeritus status and who are full members of the graduate faculty can serve as readers on thesis and dissertation committees and also serve as chairs of committees for up to one year after achieving emeritus status, unless invited to continue serving as chair beyond one year by the faculty member’s department, as stated in the University Faculty Handbook. Emeriti professors may also serve on new thesis and dissertation committees after leaving the university; however, to serve as a chair of any committee, the department must invite the emeritus faculty member to serve as the chair of a committee. An invitation for an emeritus faculty member to continue to serve as the chair of a dissertation or thesis committee should be sent to the dean of the graduate school and should include a justification pointing out how the PhD or MA/MS student will best be served by the emeritus faculty continuing to serve as the chair of the committee.

Procedures for Appointment and Reappointment

Employing the procedures of their department or program, department chairs or directors of non-department-based graduate programs recommend prospective Full and Associate members of the Graduate Faculty to the dean of the Graduate School. Proposed Full members of the Graduate Faculty are to be recommended according to the following guidelines:

  1. The faculty member is either full-time in a regular tenure-track appointment or holds some continuing status while engaged full-time in teaching and research.
  2. The faculty member is actively engaged in a program of research that may serve as a model for graduate students.
  3. The faculty member expresses enthusiasm for work with graduate students and for the graduate program of which they are to be a part.
  4. The faculty member meets the specific guidelines by which the department or program applies these general guidelines to its particular subject.

The dean of the Graduate School reviews the proposed faculty in consultation with the department chair (or program director) during the summer preceding each new academic year. At other times, upon the formal recommendation of the department chair (or program director), and with the approval of the dean, faculty members may be added to the list of Graduate Faculty.

In academic units without a graduate program, faculty members who are qualified and are interested in working with graduate students are encouraged to seek working arrangements with existing graduate programs. In such cases, the chair of the graduate department, with the advice and consent of the chair of the faculty member’s home department, may appropriately propose that faculty member for the Graduate Faculty.

Proposed Associate members of the Graduate Faculty are considered in a similar fashion. Although those proposed as Associate members may not meet guidelines 1 or 2 (above), they will, in the chair’s judgment, possess special expertise that qualifies them to offer particular courses and to serve as members of thesis and dissertation committees.

Recommendations for faculty members to be Teaching/Research Affiliates of the Graduate School originate from the department or school in which the specific course to be taught is offered. Materials to be submitted include a recommendation from the dean of the college or School, the individual’s curriculum vita, and a copy of the course syllabus of the course in which the Teaching/Research Affiliate will be teaching. Recommendations for Teaching/Research Affiliate status must be submitted in the semester (or summer) preceding the scheduled course offering. Individuals who are designated as Teaching Affiliate must have this designation renewed each time the course in question is offered, unless the individual teaches the class more than once each academic year. If this is the case, the Teaching/Research Affiliate is renewed annually.

In the event that the dean of the Graduate School and chair of the graduate department are unable to agree on the inclusion of a faculty member as either a Full or Associate member, of the Graduate Faculty, or Teaching/Research Affiliate of the Graduate School, the question will be put before the officers of the Council of Graduate School Programs for resolution.


The Scholar: Loyola’s ideal is that its faculty maintains a balance among the responsibilities of teaching, research, and service. Although all faculty are expected to aim at this ideal, Graduate Faculty are expected to model this balance, not only to other faculty, but especially to graduate students, at least some of whom will enter academic life. Because members of the Graduate Faculty are held to this ideal, Loyola does not define Graduate Faculty simply in terms of published and/or funded research. Scholarly publication is, of course, required, but so are excellent teaching and positive contributions to the maintenance of an academic community. This description applies directly to full members of the Graduate Faculty and to a modified degree to associate members in recognition of their limited responsibilities to the graduate program.

Specific Responsibilities: Full members of the Graduate Faculty have the following responsibilities:

  1. Maintain an acceptable level of scholarly productivity. While the specifics of how this responsibility is to be carried out differ from one program to another, all Graduate Faculty members are expected to be active in discovering and disseminating knowledge.
  2. Teach graduate courses. Teaching graduate courses at an appropriately advanced level, being available to students in order to pursue ideas brought up in courses, and participating in developing and updating graduate courses are activities essential to the concept of Graduate Faculty.
  3. Direct graduate student research. As a direct result of scholarly productivity and strong teaching, an individual is in a position to carry out the major responsibility of a member of the Graduate Faculty—to act as mentor, and to supervise and direct graduate student research.
  4. Serve on examination committees.

Since associate members of the Graduate Faculty are either new to the University or have commitments to other programs, their responsibilities to the graduate programs are limited:

  1. Associate Members may be available to teach graduate courses.
  2. Associate Members may serve on thesis and dissertation committees.
  3. Associate Members may serve on examination committees.

Supervising Teaching and Research Assistants

Graduate Research Assistant Evaluation


Graduate Teaching Assistant Evaluation


 Guidelines for Mentoring Teaching and Research Assistants

Privileges of Membership on the Graduate Faculty

Members of the Graduate School’s faculty have the following privileges:

  1. Recognition of professional accomplishments. The modeling of scholarship, mentioned above, is formally recognized and affirmed by appointment to the rank of full or associate member of the Graduate Faculty as appropriate. Moreover, this affirmation is renewed every two years, as described above.
  2. Opportunity to mentor graduate students. Mentoring is both a responsibility and a privilege. The future of the various professions to which we send our advanced-degree students depends upon their preparation and their attitude towards their professional responsibilities; faculty mentors are expected to be models for students with respect to a professional attitude towards the acquisition, communication, and application of knowledge.
  3. Courses. In addition to the general responsibility that the faculty have for the graduate curriculum, members of Graduate Faculty have the opportunity for more specialized, higher level teaching to advanced students. Such courses are often occasions for collaborative research efforts.
  4. Chair thesis and dissertation committees. One of the defining characteristics of full members of the Graduate Faculty is the direction of graduate student research through a thesis and/or dissertation. Any full member of the Graduate Faculty is available to direct a dissertation or thesis in any area in which the faculty member has recognized competence. This extends to students who may have matriculated in other departments.
  5. Academic work load. The time and effort spent in working with graduate students are taken into account by chairs and deans in determining academic work load, promotion, and salary increases.

Dissertation and Thesis Committees

  1. Thesis and dissertation committees have official standing only upon appointment by the Dean. When departments appoint an advisor who may eventually become the director of the student’s thesis or dissertation, that advisor must be a member of the Graduate Faculty. Faculty who are not Graduate Faculty may serve as general program advisors, but may not direct student research; any exceptions to this policy must be approved by the Dean.
  2. Associate Graduate Faculty, faculty from other universities, and faculty from departments without graduate programs may be recommended to serve as thesis or dissertation readers. In some departments, Associate Graduate Faculty may direct theses. In the case of an individual who is not Graduate Faculty or Associate Graduate Faculty (whether from Loyola or from outside Loyola), that individual’s curriculum vitae must accompany the recommendation to the Dean.
  3. The minimum number of voting members on a committee is as follows: two for a thesis and three for a dissertation. The practice of Health Sciences departments is to have three and five respectively. In specific cases, other programs may wish to recommend one or two additional members for the committee. In those cases where a committee exceeds the minimum number, the additional members may be added as “non-voting.” Each case will be handled separately. For a thesis committee of two members or a dissertation committee of either three or four members, a vote of “pass” must be unanimous.

For a thesis committee of three members or a dissertation committee of five members, there may be one dissenting vote.

In those cases where a department wishes to recommend more than three persons for a thesis committee or more than five persons for a dissertation committee, these additional persons may be added as non-voting members.

Since all official members of a committee are to be present at the final oral defense, non-Loyola scholars who can reasonably be foreseen not to be able to attend the final defense should be included on the committee as extra, non-voting members.

  1. Committee members are allowed one week to vote on a thesis or dissertation outline/proposal. Published deadlines must be observed by the student with respect to having an approved outline, including Institutional Review Board (IRB) as necessary, on file in the Graduate School in order to be eligible for a particular graduation. Although the student is ultimately responsible for meeting these deadlines, faculty are urged to cooperate by responding in a timely fashion.
  2. Committee members are allowed four weeks to read and vote upon a completed thesis or dissertation. The Graduate School publishes an unyielding deadline for submitting final copies of the thesis or dissertation prior to graduation. Circulation of the readers’ copy to committee members and scheduling the oral defense arranged with this deadline in mind are the joint responsibility of the student and committee. Failure to meet this deadline will make the student ineligible for that graduation. Committee members’ votes on the readers’ copy (submitted by the members), together with an announcement of the scheduled final defense, an abstract of the thesis or dissertation, and a vita of the candidate (all submitted by the candidate) are to be in the Graduate School office ten (10) days before the anticipated date of the defense. The defense itself must be scheduled at least five (5) days before the deadline to submit the final, approved copy to the Graduate School.
  3. Those programs that offer a masters degree without a thesis have an alternate form of a final project. The structure and assessment of that project varies from program to program. One model constitutes a committee of at least two advisors from within the program (and other, perhaps, from outside) to assess the project.

Council of Graduate School Programs

The primary function of the Council of Graduate School Programs is to discuss and formulate the aims, purposes, and quality standards for master's and doctoral programs under the auspices of the Graduate School at Loyola University Chicago. The Council has jurisdiction over all academic matters delegated and makes policy recommendations in such areas as: recruitment, admissions and retention, curriculum, qualifying exams or projects, theses and dissertations, and overall objectives related to student life and performance. The Council also serves in an advisory role to the Dean of the Graduate School. The actions of the Council shall be reviewed by the Dean of the Graduate School.

Graduate Program Directors

Graduate Program Directors (GPDs) are central to the success of Loyola University Chicago’s graduate programs. They serve as unique liaisons among the graduate student body, the graduate faculty, and the Graduate School administration. GPDs are responsible to their department or program chair and to the Dean of the Graduate School. They possess the authority to speak for the department or program on any matter relating to graduate programs. The work of the GPD includes leadership, recruitment and admission, scholarship promotion, mentoring, administration, and planning.

Appointment and Evaluation

  • Each unit offering one or more graduate programs should have one member of the graduate faculty overseeing each program. It may be that in departments with more than one degree program that there will be more than one GPD or that there will be one GPD assisted by a departmental director who serves without a Graduate School appointment.
  • Ordinarily, the Chair of the Department will recommend the appointment of the GPD to the Dean of the Graduate School. These appointments are reaffirmed annually.
  • The Graduate Program Director must be one who understands graduate education and the objectives of the department’s programs and who is able to express that understanding in Council decisions and in the monitoring of graduate student progress.
  • The appointment as GPD requires attention to the graduate program over the course of the summer.
  • Appointment of the GPD is made by the Graduate Dean upon the recommendation of the department or program chair.
  • The GPD appointment is usually for a term of 3 years, although the GPD may be removed at any time within the term.
  • Renewal is based on annual evaluations submitted by the department/program chair and the Dean of the Graduate School.

Council of Graduate School Programs

  • The Graduate Program Director represents his/her unit on the Council of Graduate School Programs.
  • If a department has multiple programs, the Department Chair will designate one director to represent the department on the Council.
  • All programs must have a representative at each Council meeting. If a GPD cannot attend a meeting, another member of the unit’s graduate faculty or one of the unit’s other GPDs must attend.

Resources for Graduate Program Directors

In order to attract and retain capable faculty who will pursue the above responsibilities, certain resources must be provided. The level of resources made available to a GPD varies by the size and complexity of the graduate program. Resources for service as a GPD may include an administrative stipend, a reduction in other responsibilities (teaching or service), and/or the assignment of an assistant to help operate of program.

Administrative Responsibilities of Graduate Program Directors


  • Thinks about the program creatively, practically, and holistically.
  • Speaks for the department or program on any matter relating to graduate programs.
  • Initiates ideas for program development in light of disciplinary standards.
  • Develops and enforces procedures to maintain quality.
  • Remains consistent with departmental and university objectives.
  • Represents the program both within and outside the university.
  • Creates a supportive environment for graduate students.
  • Fosters a sense of community among the graduate students in his or her program.


  • Insures that all promotional materials (print and web) are current.
  • Identifies strong candidates via correspondence, programs such as the McNair Scholars, and face-to-face meetings with prospects.
  • Responds to inquires from prospective applicants.
  • Follows-up and nurtures prospects via email, telephone, and sponsorship of campus visits.
  • Develops and institutes a diversity recruitment plan.
  • Cultivates an inclusive and diverse graduate student body.


  • Works closely with Graduate and Professional Enrollment Management (GPEM) during the admissions process.
  • Works with GPEM to keep all admissions-related publicity and materials up-to-date.
  • Brings completed applications to department admissions committee or to the various individuals in the department who engage in the admission process.
  • Follows Graduate School directives regarding enrollment targets and diversity.
  • Submits admission recommendations to GPEM.
  • Extends financial offers to accepted applicants.
  • Prepares award forms for applicants offered aid and submit completed applications to the Graduate School for evaluation and action in accordance with establish dates.
  • Sets up a departmental orientation for new students each fall.
  • Assigns a veteran graduate student as a mentor for each new student.

Management of Graduate Assistants

  • Assigns duties to graduate assistants (scheduling of teaching, research, other duties) at least two months before the beginning of the academic year.
  • Provides departmental training programs for assistants.
  • Ensures that assistants attend the appropriate assistant workshops (teaching/research).
  • Ensures that assistants serving as teachers of record attend the Teaching Effectiveness Seminar.
  • Provides mentors for all assistants serving as teachers of record.
  • Assesses the work performance of graduate assistants.

Promotion of Scholarship

  • Serves as an example of scholarship through publishing and participation in other scholarly activities.
  • Serves on thesis/dissertation committees.
  • Provides information about grants suitable for graduate students and encourage graduate students to take part in grant workshops and Graduate School grant-related programs.
  • Encourages graduate student participation in professional meetings.
  • Assists in securing funding for graduate student professional travel.


  • Oversees the establishment of the annual curricular structure.
  • Enhances the program by monitoring and improving applicant academic quality.
  • Monitors time to degree.
  • Keeps program information—policies and curricular information—current on the website and in a program handbook.
  • Provides sufficient oversight to insure that all students are properly supervised at both the coursework level and at the dissertation stage.
  • Prepares written annual assessments of student progress for each student and place the assessment in the student’s file.
  • Manages the graduate budget.


  • Provides orientation (both academic and social) for incoming students.
  • Serves as a resource for academic advisement, especially before the major professor assumes this role.
  • Oversees the constitution of student’s advisory committee
  • Provides information regarding internships/practicum arrangements.
  • Oversees administration of the examination process.
  • Oversees the program’s dissertation/thesis process.
  • Provides information regarding employment opportunities following graduation.
  • Serves as an advocate of graduate students, individually and collectively, within the program, assuring fairness of treatment.
  • Serves as faculty mentor for the program graduate student association.


  • Files an annual report with the Graduate School with a data and comments section on each of the following topics:
    • Quality and profile of students admitted that year.
    • Amount, sufficiency, and competitiveness of financial awards to students in the program.
    • Current status of all students in the program.
    • Placement of graduates.
    • Plans for program development.
    • Resource needs
    • Recommendations
  • Prepares reports as requested by the Graduate School.

Updated November 4, 2019