Developing Your Research Portfolio

The primary purpose of our program is to train students to produce world-class research and to help students develop publishable and influential research papers. A student’s success on the job market as well as in his or her first few years as a professor is strongly influenced by the number of solid research projects (and/or publications) that the student has developed as a doctoral student. 

We therefore strongly encourage students to get involved in research from the very beginning of the program. For students in their first two years, the most important research projects are the first-year and second-year papers. For more senior doctoral students, the most important research project is their dissertation.

However, just as faculty members are typically working on several research projects at the same time, students are also expected to develop a portfolio of research projects beyond the required papers. Students can certainly pursue these projects independently or with fellow doctoral students, but they frequently do so in partnership with faculty whom they have identified as having a knowledge base or a skill set that is relevant to the project.