Graduate Advising

Graduate Advising Model

Our Faculty Academic Advisors are assigned to all incoming graduate students in the School of HASS. These assignments are based on the interests indicated during the application process, and the availability of faculty. 


Doctorate Faculty Advisors: Once students have identified a dissertation area (typically in their second year), they are expected to discuss with potential faculty and the Graduate Program Director their preferences for a dissertation advisor, who will become the Chair of the Doctoral Committee. This faculty member will then serve as the Primary Advisor moving forward. Dissertation Chairs must be tenured or tenure-track faculty members from within the student's department. 


Graduate Program Directors in HASS

HASS Faculty Members who support the Graduate Programs and Students within their Departments.

Igor VamosElectronic Arts Ph.D.
Mei SiCritical Game Design M.S. & Ph.D.
Billur AksoyEconomics M.S., Applied Economics and Policy Ph.D.
Helen ZhouCommunication & Rhetoric Ph.D
Selmer BringsjordCognitive Science Ph.D
Nancy CampbellScience and Technology Studies M.S. & Ph.D.


Click here to view the HASS Graduate Program Handbooks



Support from the RPI Office of Graduate Education (OGE)

Office of Graduate Education
1516 Peoples Ave. Troy, NY 12180

(518) 276-6488,


"The mission of the Office of Graduate Education (OGE) is to support students in achieving professional success through the coordination and collaboration of efforts between advisors, mentors, departments, and academic schools."

  • Contact Information, Announcements, and Events
  • Graduate Program Directors and Administrators 
  • Ombuds (Confidential and Informal Assistance)
  • Student Services (Advisement and Thesis/Dissertation Support)
  • OGE Faculty and Staff (Support, Resources, and Advocacy)

Find additional support at OGE


Discover the Graduate Student Experience

"The Rensselaer graduate community includes co-terminal, master’s, and doctoral students. As researchers, teaching assistants, and leaders, graduate students are essential to the academic and social fabric of the campus."

  • Student Life and Community
  • Professional Development
  • Graduate Student Research
  • Events

Discover more

"The Office of Graduate Education supports graduate students in meeting degree milestones and submitting a thesis/dissertation."

  • Advisement and Plan of Study
  • Master's Student Academic Timeline
  • Doctoral Student Academic Timeline
  • Doctoral Student Yearly Review (DSYR)
  • Submit your Thesis / Dissertation

Start planning

Online Preparation Workshops for MS Thesis or PhD Dissertation.

Advisement and Plan of Study

  • Graduate Plan of Study
  • Change of Status
  • Grad Level Course for Undergrads
  • Fellowship Supplemental Support Request
  • Travel Request Form
  • Transfer Credit Approval Form

Co-Terminal Program

  • Plan of Study
  • Grad Level Course for Undergrads
  • 4th & 5th Year Planner (Co-Term)
  • Co-Term Process and Policies

Change of Status (Policy and Form)


  • Nomination of MS Thesis Committee
  • Record of MS Thesis and Oral Presentation
  • Nomination of Doctoral Committee
  • Declaration of Co-Contribution
  • RPI Publisher Permission Letter Template
  • Record of PhD Candidacy Examination Packet
  • Record of Dissertation Exam


  • The Rensselaer Handbook of Student Rights and Responsibilities
  • The Graduate Student Supplement to the Rensselaer Student Handbook of Rights & Responsibilities
  • TA Handbook

"Research and teaching assistantships and university, corporate, or national fellowships fund many of Rensselaer’s full-time graduate students."

  • Tuition and Assistantships
  • Graduate Student Relief Fund
  • Nationally Competitive Fellowships
  • Workshops and Advising
  • Supplemental Support Request
  • Meet the Fellows

Get Started

"Welcome to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. As you prepare for arrival please review the information below, as well as orientation link on the right hand side menu of this Web page. Please continue to watch the Office of Graduate Education website for additional announcements and information."

Discover the critical details before you arrive, and once you arrive.


Course Registration:

  • If you have developed a curriculum plan with your Faculty Advisor, you may register for courses now.
  • If you do not yet have a plan, there will be time to register right before the start of the semester in August. 


"Please note that the co-terminal program will change for students who joined RPI as undergraduates in Fall 2024 or later. The information presented on this page describes the current co-terminal program. If you are a new undergraduate student considering the co-terminal program, please email for information. 

Rensselaer's Co-Terminal Program provides undergraduates the opportunity to pursue graduate degrees while maintaining their undergraduate Rensselaer funding. Most Rensselaer master’s programs are available as part of the Co-Terminal Program, and participants follow the same curriculum as traditional master's students."

Discover application requirements and apply now.

Support from the Student Services Hub in HASS

We can offer guidance with: 

  • Course planning 
  • Academic progress review 
  • Form assistance/approvals 
  • Thesis/dissertation protocol 
  • Co-terminal program application assistance 


"The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (HASS) provides limited professional travel funding to graduate students in support of their research, for example for ethnographic research or for research presentation at an established conference or venue. This document outlines information regarding the required steps to apply for travel support and for requesting Institutional booking/reimbursement through Concur, Rensselaer’s expense management tool."

  • Travel Request Form (July 1st, 2024 - June 30th, 2025)
  • Guidelines & Instructions

If you have questions during this process, please email


Find the required form under "Advisement and Plan of Study..."


Office Hours: Weekdays, 9 am to 4 pm 

Drop-In Hours: Weekdays (2 to 4 pm)
Drop-Ins outside of these hours are accommodated when possible, but not guaranteed.

  • 5-to-10-minute conversations
  • Remote or in-person option
  • Perfect for quick updates, questions, support with forms, etc.
  • Sign-up Sheet (will be reviewed between 2 and 4 pm weekdays)


4307 Russell Sage Laboratory, RPI 



The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences
Russell Sage Laboratory (SAGE) 5304, 110 8th Street, Troy, NY 12180
(518) 276-6575

Back to top