Off-site Faculty Participation in Doctoral Defenses
If, despite all reasonable efforts, it proves impossible to schedule a defense at a time when the full committee can attend, a student may petition for one research committee member to participate by video conference. The student and committee should exhaust all other avenues before requesting off-site participation by a committee member.
Permission for the off-site participation by a research committee member is subject to the following conditions:
There must be a compelling reason why off-site participation is necessary. It may not be solely for convenience.
Off-site participation may occur only for the “defense” format for DM Doctoral Final Projects and for PhD/DME dissertations defenses. For all other formats for Doctoral Final Project public presentations, including the lecture-recital and public lecture, all members of the research committee must attend in person.
This option is available only for a single member of the research committee. The other three members of the research committee must attend in person. Off-site participation by the research director is especially discouraged.
Students may not participate in a defense off-site; they must attend in person.
Off-site participation must be via high-definition Skype video call or Zoom video conference. Participation by phone, audio-only, or other video service is not permitted.
The off-site faculty member must guarantee access to a reliable, high-speed Internet connection that will support high-definition video, in a distraction-free setting. (An Internet café with public Wi-Fi would not be appropriate, for example.) A minimum network bandwidth of 1.2Mbps is required, with 1.5Mbps recommended. See https://support.skype.com/en/faq/FA1417/how-much-bandwidth-does-skype-need.
Defenses involving an off-site participant are subject to availability of approved JSOM rooms. The doctoral clerk will determine this when the question arises.
Defenses involving an off-site participant may be scheduled only on dates that appear on the Music Graduate Office defense calendar.
The student and research committee understand that no technical support of any kind will be provided by the Music Graduate Office, the dean’s office, or Music Information Technology Services. Detailed instructions will be provided, but it is the responsibility of the student and faculty to ensure that the connection is successful.
If a video connection cannot be made and maintained during the entire defense, the student acknowledges that the defense will not count and will need to be rescheduled.
To request a defense involving the off-site participation of one member of the research committee:
The student should submit a petition to the musicdgs [at] indiana [dot] edu (Director of Graduate Studies). The petition should (1) explain in detail why it is impossible to assemble the entire committee, (2) include a proposed date or range of dates, and (3) indicate that the student has read and understood this entire page.
The proposed off-site faculty member should send an e-mail message to the musicdgs [at] indiana [dot] edu (Director of Graduate Studies), saying where they will connect from, what type of Internet connection is available, and indicating whether they have verified that the connection speed between the off-site location and the IU campus is adequate for high-definition (HD) video (not just high quality or standard video), as outlined here: https://support.skype.com/en/faq/FA1417/how-much-bandwidth-does-skype-need.
The chair of the student’s research committee should write to the musicdgs [at] indiana [dot] edu (Director of Graduate Studies) approving off-site participation on the part of one committee member.
Defenses with off-site participation will take place in JS111 or M285.
The student and off-site faculty member should set up Skype accounts or a Zoom conference at least two weeks before the defense and test them to ensure they understand how to use the program.
The off-site faculty member should make every effort to test the connection with someone on campus (e.g., the student, another committee member) at least one day in advance.
The off-site faculty member should be available 30 minutes before the scheduled start time of the defense.
If the defense is scheduled in JS 111, At least one day before the defense, the RC chair (or designated faculty member) should contact Sherri Bishop in the dean’s office (East Studio Building 4th floor) to arrange to check out a key on the day of the defense. If the defense is scheduled in M285, a key is available for checkout at the circulation desk.
The student and the research committee chair (or other committee member) should report to the defense room at least 30 minutes before the scheduled start time to set up the computer and aim to have the connection fully functioning by 15 minutes before the scheduled start time.
PhD students must have the committee members who are present at the defense sign the acceptance page and abstract page at the defense and then mail those pages to the off-site faculty member for them to sign. The off-site faculty member must then mail the two pages back to the student for them to submit to the University Graduate School.
- All Music Graduate Office forms should be signed by the committee members present at the defense and then returned to the Music Graduate Office. The off-site faculty member should then email firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm that the student has passed the defense so we can sign on that person's behalf.