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Graduate Student Resources

Registering for Classes

  • Registration Hold– Your advisor should lift your registration hold each semester in the My Pack Portal. If your advisor is having trouble with this, Heather Austin, Student Services Coordinator, can lift your hold with your advisor’s permission.
  • Enrollment calendar – Register on time each semester. If you do not register on time, you will be charged a $100 late fee. If you have enrollment issues with a BAE course, please contact Heather Austin. She can do an override to put you in the class. If the course is in another department, they will have to do the override for you.  When you contact them, include your student ID #, the section number if there is more than one section, and check that you don’t have any time conflicts with the course you are asking them to add.
  • It is important to follow registration guidelines for Graduate Student Support Plan, University requirements for full time enrollment, and OIS requirements. Be sure you are registered correctly on census day, the 10th day of semester.  If you are supported by the GSSP, do not drop below full time status after census day. Audited courses do not count toward enrollment.

Degree Requirements

  • MBAE – 30 hours, at least 20 semester hours of which must at the 500-600 level, no 400-level BAE courses. Student must take 3 hours of advanced math (400 level) or statistics (500 level). Up to 3 hours of Special Topics (BAE 610) or Special Problems (BAE 620) will be allowed, but research hours (BAE 693 or BAE 695) will not be allowed. At least 60% of the hours shown on the Plan of Work must be BAE courses. Minors are not allowed.
  • MS – 30hours, no minor required, up to 6 hours of the 30 may be research hours, at least 24 hours should be graded coursework, 20 hours must be at the 500 level or above, no 400 level BAE courses, must have 2 hours of research methods (BAE 591 & BAE 592), must have 6 hours of advanced math (400 level) or statistics (500 level), BAE 699 and FE prep courses should not be on POW
  • PhD – 72 hours (18 hours from MS may be counted, 36 if MS was from NCSU with no break between degrees), minor is required, no limit for research hours, must have 6 hours of advanced math (400 level) or statistics (500 level) if not on MS transcript, must have 2 hours of research methods (BAE 791 and 792) unless you have taken BAE 591/592 previously. You must also satisfy the Information Delivery Requirement by showing at least 1 hour of BAE 885 Doctoral Supervised Teaching or an approved course; see the Grad Manual:
  • Plan of Work – All graduate students will submit a POW for approval by the Graduate School.  Masters students should submit by the end of the second semester.  PhD students should submit by the end of the third semester. Submit online via the MyPack Portal. It can take weeks to get all approvals so do not wait to submit until just before you plan to schedule your prelim or final exam. Be sure to allow extra time if you have transfer credit or committee members from outside the university.
    • Common problems with POW:
      • Turn in official copy of final transcripts to the Graduate School (if undergraduate degree is not from NC State)
      • Make sure all committee members are on the graduate faculty. Be sure your minor representative is on the graduate faculty in that program, especially for Water Resources and Biotech.
      • Must have full graduate faculty member as chair or co-chair on Ph.D. committee
      • Ph.D. committees need to have a Graduate School Rep from outside the department. This can be one of your committee members or someone designated by the Graduate School.

Preliminary Exam Expectation

The purpose of the preliminary exam is to determine if the student has identified a suitable problem, proposed a realistic approach to that problem, and has the tools and resources needed to complete the project.

The process is largely up to the advisor and the committee but must include a written exam from the entire committee and a public presentation of the proposal. The oral exam cannot be scheduled until the written exam has been satisfactorily completed; the request must be submitted at least 2 weeks prior to the proposed date. The student must ensure all committee members, including the Graduate School Representative, can attend at the date and time specified. More detailed information here.

Degree Timelines

TA* Three semesters assigned as Teaching Assistant; semesters may vary

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Employment and Funding

  • Graduate Student Support Plan – If you are supported by the GSSP, you should read the GSSP Student Handbook and familiarize yourself with the requirements to remain eligible.  There is also information about the Grad Student Health Insurance Plan at this link.
  • Assistantships – If you are on an assistantship, you will receive an email prompting you to electronically sign your employment contract.  The end date onyour Terms & Conditions contract serves as the notice of termination.  Your assistantship will automatically end without notice on that date. Contact Heather Austin 2 weeks before end date on T&C if continuing on assistantship.  If you are continuing beyond the end of the term specified in your offer letter, then your advisor must send Heather Austin a new end date via email and confirm the account number to pay your stipend.  If transitioning to an hourly position, go see Lacy Parrish 3-4 weeks before end date. Set up your direct deposit account in the Employee Self Service section of the portal.

Biweekly payroll schedule can be found here.

If you are supported by an assistantship, you are discouraged from seeking employment outside of the department that may delay the completion of your thesis or dissertation. If you choose to work outside of the department, you must get the approval of your advisor and notify the Director of Graduate Programs (John Classen) and/or the Grad Services Coordinator (Heather Austin).  Be aware that there are negative tax implications for you and your funding source if implications for you and your funding source if outside employment is more than 9 hours per week; such requests will not be approved.

  • Fellowships – Primary and Supplemental Fellowships are distributed by the University Cashier’s office.  You will need to enter direct deposit information through the Student Section of the portal.  The employee system and the student system do not share direct deposit information. You will be able to view the scheduled disbursements of your fellowships in the Financial Aid section of the portal.  It may take a few days after the disbursement is released for you to see the funds in your account because bank processing times vary.
  • Expenses not covered by GSSP – If your tuition, health insurance, and/or fees are paid by the department or another sponsor, be sure to check your account about 4 weeks into the semester to make sure you don’t have a balance.  If the department pays any of these expenses for you, let Heather Austin know when you have a bill.
  • North Carolina Residency for tuition purposes – Students who are eligible to apply for NC residency are expected to do so at the end of the first year.  Tuition remission payments from the GSSP for students who are eligible to become residents of North Carolina for tuition purposes will be discontinued after their first year for those who do not perform sufficient and timely residentiary acts and complete a good faith residency reclassification application prior to the posted deadline. This means you will be expected to pay the difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition.

Visit here for more information.

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Campus Services

  • Disability Services Office – Students are encouraged to initiate contact with the DSO as early in their academic career as possible so that the DSO can provide accommodations.  Types of disabilities can include neurobiological and developmental disorders, chronic medical conditions, cognitive disorders, mental health disorders, impaired ability to hear or see, physical mobility conditions, brain injury, and temporary medical conditions. Services are provided for conditions as they arise as well and are not limited to pre-existing conditions.
  • Counseling Center – The counseling staff is there to address academic, social and emotional concerns.
  • Diversity – NC State and BAE are committed to creating a welcoming and inclusive environment. Programs and resources are available through the Office for Institutional
    Equity and Diversity. Two of interest include the University Diversity Mini-Grant Programand the Student diversity site:
  • Writing Guides and Assistance – The NCSU Online Writing Lab and Grammar Hotline is no longer actively managed due to budget cuts, however the site ( has some useful links. The Elements of Style by William Strunk is one of the best guides and has been around for a long. It can be found here ( and on the site above.The Graduate School offers Thesis and Dissertation Support Services ( Several workshops and seminars are offered from “Forming an Advisory Committee” to “Planning Your Dissertation Defense. The director is Meagan Kittle Autry and she can be reached at or 919.515.2737.
  • Professional Development Initiative – The Graduate School provides many programs and workshops for students to develop skills in leadership, communication, problem solving, conflict management, critical thinking, and teamwork. The department can send one student to a joint professional development program for PhD students offered by CALS and the College of Science. Nominations are made in the spring for the program that is held during fall break.
    Libraries: More than just books and articles – NCSU Libraries, D.H. Hill and the Hunt Library, offer services and support to students in a variety of ways. Not only can they help you find the reference that seems to be missing or help with the various databases to search literature, the librarians are there to help with literature reviews, citation management, data visualization, North Carolina rules and regulations, and data management. They can help with data management plans for proposals as well. One helpful resources you might need early in your graduate career describes the process of a literature review ( Another resource was put together for Textiles and Engineering but these links have not been verified (
    ).The best resource is personal contact. Start with Dr. Mohan Ramaswamy at or 919.513.3157. He is very friendly and ready to help.

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International Students

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Examinations and Theses & Dissertations

Oral Exams

  • Request Forms can be found here. Forms should be turned in to Heather Austin 3 weeks before the exam date. She will help you with a room reservation.

MS defense – Provide Heather with your thesis title when you schedule the defense (title can be tentative).
PhD prelims –You may only schedule your oral prelim after you have passed your written examinations.
PhD finals – must allow at least 4 months between prelim and final

Electronic Theses & Dissertations

Read the ETD guide before writing and refer to the guide regularly. The guide explains in detail the formatting requirements and the submission process. attention to the deadlines for defense and ETD submission, especially the registration required column. If you are defending in the summer, you must be registered in the summer. Most students take BAE 696 (masters) or BAE 896 (PhD) in the 10 week summer session. Please note that the GSSP does not pay summer tuition.

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Office Space

  • Office Space
    • MS students are provided an office for 2 years. PhD students are provided an office for 4-5 years. If you need your office space for longer, you may request an extension.  Extensions are allowed if we do not need the space for an incoming student. Please turn in all keys to Lacy Parrish before you leave.

Other Resources

  • Graduate School Administrative Handbook