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Graduate Program Director Handbook Chapter 4: Theses and Dissertations

4.1 Theses and Dissertations

The purpose of the thesis or dissertation is to show evidence of the graduate student's development as a consumer of research and knowledge. The process of writing a thesis or dissertation starts very early - at the point of writing a proposal. Several graduate programs have formatting guidelines and thesis timelines of their own. It is important that students are mindful of these program-specific policies. Where those guidelines are more exacting than the ones listed here, and where a program’s deadlines are earlier than the ones listed here, those program-specific guidelines/timelines take precedence.


For non-graduate faculty to serve as a thesis or dissertation committee member, a Request for Non-Graduate Faculty Thesis/Dissertation form or Request for External Thesis/Dissertation Committee Member form must be completed. The form must be completed by the department and forwarded to the Graduate School for approval. The forms can be found on the Thesis & Dissertation Forms website.


Please visit the Graduate School's Thesis and Dissertation Procedures website page for additional information.