There are two formal advisory roles in the Cultural Studies program:
- the Portfolio Advisor (PA), selected from one of the core or affiliated Cultural Studies faculty and assigned to you at the start of the Autumn quarter of Year 1;
- the Capstone Advisor (CA), who will be identified in Spring Quarter of Year 1, based on your three ranked choices, faculty availability/advising loads, and goodness of fit.
For more information about the role of the PA and CA, please see the guidelines for the Portfolio and the Capstone. While these two people will be responsible for meeting with you regularly (at least once a quarter) and for reviewing and evaluating your portfolio and capstone, it is assumed that you will also seek informal advising from other faculty members, fellow students, library and media center staff, the Grad Office, and any community collaborators.
The PA and CA will play critical and clearly-defined roles in your experience and in your progress through the program, but a significant degree of less formalized advising is built into the program structure. The structure and content of the core courses are designed to address questions, skills, concerns and development at each stage of portfolio and capstone development. Faculty within and across the sequence of core courses will be significant advising resources. You are also encouraged to reach out across the UW for faculty and staff resources that correspond to your special interests and career goals.
The cohort design of the program is intended to facilitate a genuine exchange of ideas among students, and to foster meaningful collaborative and peer review relationships within each student cohort. Therefore, you will be significant advising resources for each other, as well as providing an array of perspectives on ideas, problems, and strategies. The Graduate Student Liaison (GSL) can provide assistance and voice for problems that may be more programmatic in nature, or questions that seem to involve student/faculty (or program) concerns in a general or shared way. Year 2 students can also provide very useful insights for Year 1 students into navigating the program, the capstone and portfolio processes, and connections to resources and sites.
You will also find extremely valuable support and advice from the campus Writing and Communication Center (Karen Rosenberg is the director), the Library (Jackie Belanger is the librarian who works most closely with Cultural Studies) and the Media Center. In different and sometimes interacting ways, these professional staff members are available to advise you on specific matters of research and research strategies, including the review (and idiosyncrasies) of diverse literatures, the organization and composition of papers/projects, the creation of portfolios, the identification of exemplars for handling particular problems, and so on.
In many cases, community collaborators—those directly engaged with your projects and those affiliated with Cultural Studiesand UW Bothell—are an inestimable source of advice, theory, strategy, and feedback. Making meaningful use of these resources can help ensure your success in the program and enhance the quality, freshness and relevance of your work. The IAS Community Relations Manager (CRM) is Lisa Olason who is available to assist you in locating community-based learning, research, and career-building opportunities. The CRM advises students on best practices in approaching and working with nonprofit organizations, public agencies, and businesses. Consulting with the CRM is highly recommended for those students considering capstone research projects in partnership with community-based entities. The CRM also collaborates with campus Career Services, the UW Graduate School, and other resources to identify and facilitate professional development opportunities for IAS graduate students.
The IAS Graduate Office also provides several other important advising resources. The Graduate Program Manager or the Graduate Program Coordinator, can provide information about UW Graduate School policies and procedures, registering for courses at other UW campuses, and matters not related directly to the Cultural Studies curriculum and portfolio.