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### Advancing Doctoral Education: Florida State University’s Bold Plan

Doctoral education takes center stage in FSU’s latest Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) presented as part of the university’s accreditation reaffirmation process. As a leading public research institution, Florida State University places significant importance on its doctoral students.

The newly proposed QEP, part of the university’s efforts to secure accreditation, involves a $10 million investment spread over five years to enrich doctoral education in alignment with FSU’s 2023–2027 Strategic Plan. This initiative also includes the establishment of a novel Graduate Student Resource Center, envisioned as a comprehensive support hub for graduate students.

Jim Clark, the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, emphasized the pivotal role of doctoral students in driving research advancements alongside the esteemed faculty at FSU. The university’s substantial investment aims to not only attract top-tier doctoral candidates but also provide them with the necessary resources to excel in their academic and creative pursuits.

Doctoral education has consistently been a focal point in FSU’s strategic plans, with the latest QEP building upon this foundation of support. A committee comprising faculty members, doctoral students, and administrators from diverse disciplines across the campus collaborated under Clark’s leadership to shape the new QEP. Their goal was to enhance the overall experience, performance, and post-graduation prospects of doctoral students.

Through a thorough assessment of existing support structures, relevant literature, and best practices from peer institutions and the Council of Graduate Schools, the QEP Committee identified key areas for improvement. These include enhancing the utilization of university resources, reducing the time to graduation, increasing participation in research conferences, refining job placement skills, and enhancing teaching preparation for doctoral students.

Florida State University plans to roll out various initiatives aimed at enhancing the doctoral student experience. The introduction of the Graduate Student Resource Center (GSRC), under the direction of Dr. Emily Leventhal, will serve as a centralized hub for academic and student support services, with a specific focus on doctoral students. Additionally, a research and creative activity grant program will be launched to boost scholarly productivity by facilitating students’ participation in conferences and exhibitions.

University Libraries will conduct skills workshops covering topics such as citation management, literature review, and data analysis. The Career Center will offer activities like mock job interviews and virtual skills modules to enhance employment readiness. Moreover, the Center for the Advancement of Teaching (CAT) will expand training for Teaching Assistants (TAs) to improve teaching practices and benefit both graduate students and undergraduate learners.

With a forward-looking approach embedded in the QEP, FSU anticipates significant advancements in doctoral education quality over the next five years. For further details on the QEP, please visit the provided link.