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Ph.D. Graduate Plan of Work

The Graduate Plan of Work (PoW) is a document that serves both as a guide to successful degree completion and a contract between students and their program. In this way, it serves to reduce the potential for misunderstandings about degree requirements and outlines the expected academic progress students should make. It is especially helpful when it is evaluated on at least an annual basis by students with their advisor(s), and, where applicable, their advisory committees, with any needed modifications recorded at that time. It should be viewed as a “living document” that reflects changes that may occur as students continue to develop and refine their academic programs.


At the time of final submission Graduate Plan of Work must include:

  • a list of the coursework to be undertaken
  • accurate information about any transfer credits to be used for the degree. Any request to include transfer credit should be submitted to the Graduate School prior to the start of the student’s graduate program or no later than before the end of the first semester
  • the thesis or dissertation topic 
  • the name of the student’s committee chair (major professor)
  • the members of the student’s advisory committee

Formulation and Submission Process

The Graduate Plan of Work must be:

  • developed by the student in collaboration with his/her major professor and, where applicable, advisory committee 
  • approved by the committee and the Director of the Graduate Program (DGP) prior to submission to the Graduate School for approval
  • submitted online through MyPack Portal (instructions for creating PoW through MyPack Portal can be found in the SIS Training and Operations Manual.
  • Evaluated and approved  by the Graduate School.

More information concerning the Graduate Plan of Work can be found at NC State Graduate Handbook 3.3 Graduate Plan of Work.