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Thesis, Project, and Dissertation Guidelines

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I request a preliminary review?
Send an email to the appropriate Thesis/Dissertation Reviewer and request a preliminary review. You may also visit a Reviewer during office hours. A list of Reviewers is available here.

Is there a deadline to have my thesis reviewed and submitted?
Yes, there are three deadlines you must adhere to each quarter, which are posted here.

Will the reviewer read my thesis?
No, the Reviewer will not read your thesis. The Reviewer will check the format only (spacing, headings, pagination, references, etc.). Only your Committee will comment on the content.

How long will it take to have my document reviewed?
Anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes for a printed copy and about 45 minutes for an electronic copy.

Are there any forms that I need to turn in?
Yes, one form is required. The GS-13 (approval form) is the approval page for your thesis or dissertation. You must obtain the signatures of all members of your Committee, as well as your department chair(s), division chair, or school director. You may download the GS-13 form here.

Where can I get help using Microsoft Word?
Any Open Access Lab on campus can provide help with word processing and mechanics of using the application.

Who can help me with writing and checking grammar?
The University Writing Center here on campus is a great resource available to students. Graduate students in the midst of completing their theses or dissertations may schedule a 60-minute appointment with UWC staff. Additionally, many students have hired an editor or proofreader to assist with the thesis. Unfortunately, we cannot provide a list of suggested editors or proofreaders.

Do I have to be enrolled when I turn in my thesis/dissertation?
Yes, you must be enrolled or you will not receive credit for your work. At minimum, candidates must enroll in thesis/dissertation units (courses numbered 597, 599, 699, or 900) in the term in which they complete the thesis/dissertation. Usually, 900-numbered courses bear no credit, but candidates will nonetheless pay a fee. Only candidates who have lost matriculation status may enroll in units via Extended Education. Please consult with the Cashier's Office for more information regarding fees.

Do I have to apply for graduation to turn in a thesis/dissertation?
Yes, if you expect to graduate at the end of the term in which you complete the thesis/dissertation, you must apply for graduation one quarter prior to the anticipated graduation date. Some departments require candidates to complete the thesis/dissertation several quarters prior to graduation; in this case, candidates need not apply for graduation until the appropriate time.

Are there any other fees required to turn in a thesis/dissertation?
No, there are no other fees required.

How do I convert my file to PDF?
There are several ways to do this. View the ProQuest PDF tutorial found on their help page.

How do I submit in the electronic file of my thesis/dissertation?
You will submit your electronic file online using the ETD Administrator. Your Thesis/Dissertation Reviewer will do one final review once you have uploaded the thesis to this site and may contact you to recommend additional edits.

How do I turn in a CD or DVD that accompanies my thesis/project report?
CDs and DVDs cannot be uploaded to the ETD Administrator. Instead, submit one copy to the Thesis Reviewer along with the required approval and agreement forms. Printed labels and cases are required, as detailed in the Thesis Guide. CDs and DVDs will be housed in the Music and Media Center of the Library.

Do I have to submit a bound copy of my thesis/dissertation to the Library?
As of Fall 2011, candidates are no longer required to submit a bound copy of the thesis or dissertation to the Library. Only the electronic submission is required.

How do I order print copies of my thesis/dissertation?
You have the option to order bound copies of your thesis or dissertation through the ETD Administrator submission process. If you wish to change your order after you have submitted the thesis or dissertation, you may do so by contacting ProQuest/UMI support. All orders and payments are made directly to ProQuest/UMI. Candidates may also opt to have their theses and dissertations bound locally by Bella Printing Services in Glendale.

How long does it take to receive bound copies?
The Library delivers thesis files to ProQuest/UMI approximately 2–4 weeks after the final deadline of each quarter. Once ProQuest/UMI receives the files, it takes another 8–12 weeks to bind and mail copies. For additional information regarding bound copies via ProQuest/UMI, students may contact ProQuest Customer Service at (800) 521-0600 x77020.