The Graduate School
LYNN W. JELINSKI
JOHN M. LARKIN
MARLENE C. LeBLANC
CONCEPTS AND PURPOSE
The primary purpose of the Graduate School is to provide students with opportunities for advanced study and specialization, to instruct students in methods of independent investigation, and to foster the spirit of scholarship and research. The LSU Graduate School may be considered the state center of academic research and advanced studies as it carries on a more extended and comprehensive program than any other educational institution in the state.
The Graduate School administers more than 130 graduate degree programs offered at LSU. The school was established because the University recognized its obligation to provide an environment for research and free inquiry and to make the results of these activities available to the public.
As a major center of graduate education, LSU adds a vital dimension to the education of undergraduates. Few institutions of higher learning (no others in Louisiana and fewer than two percent nationally) can offer undergraduates the opportunity to work with professors engaged to the depth and extent of the faculty at LSU, not just in passing on information, but also in testing accepted ideas and in discovering new knowledge.
Doctoral research programs are the essential defining feature of a university; without them, the institution would more properly be called a college. LSU's status as one of the top 70 research universities in the nation, its classification as a Research University I by the Carnegie Foundation, depends chiefly on two criteria held to be prime indicators that an institution is a major center for the creation of new knowledge. These criteria are outside funding for research and the number of new Ph.D.s produced each year. Doctoral education, the training of future generations of scholars, keeps LSU—and helps to keep Louisiana and the nation—on the leading edge of discovery.
LSU offers doctoral programs in 54 major fields of study. These programs offer opportunities for advanced training and research in all areas of the sciences, social sciences, and humanities. Master's degree programs are offered in 75 major fields. These range from Master of Fine Arts degrees in creative writing, studio art, and theatre to professional degree programs in social work, in business administration, and in library and information science.
Students seeking the professional degree, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M.), offered through the School of Veterinary Medicine, study and work in one of the most advanced and well-equipped schools of veterinary medicine in the United States. The School of Veterinary Medicine also offers master's and doctoral degrees through the Graduate School.
Additional information about the degree programs listed below may be found in the Graduate Bulletin, which may be obtained from the LSU Graduate School, 114 David Boyd Hall, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70803, or accessed through the LSU home page, http://www.lsu.edu.
Additional information about specific graduate and professional programs is published in catalogs, bulletins, and brochures that may be obtained from the department or school at addresses listed in this catalog.
HISTORY AND ORGANIZATION
The first graduate degree recorded was a "Civil Engineering" degree awarded in 1869. By 1890, 14 master's degrees had been awarded, and by 1909, a total of 32. In 1909, the Graduate Department was established, with the general supervision of graduate work vested in a Committee on Graduate Courses. During the period from 1909 to 1931, 439 master's degrees were awarded.
In 1931, the Graduate School was established and the first graduate dean, Charles W. Pipkin, was appointed. The former Committee on Graduate Studies was reorganized into a Graduate Council. Doctoral programs were also established in 1931, and the first doctorate was awarded in 1935. From 1931 through summer 1999, 6,775 Doctor of Philosophy degrees, 401 doctorates other than Doctor of Philosophy degrees, and 36,536 master's degrees were awarded. The total number of advanced degrees awarded by LSU thus reached 43,746.
The affairs of the Graduate School are administered by the graduate dean, with the advice and consultation of the Graduate Council. The council is composed of the dean and associate dean of the Graduate School, who serve as ex officio members, and ten faculty members appointed by the Chancellor for rotating terms of five years each. The Council considers proposals for new degree programs, recommends membership classifications on the graduate faculty, and makes recommendations to the graduate faculty for changes in Graduate School policy.