Writing and defending a dissertation or thesis is the culmination of a research-based graduate degree. The steps below will assist students in completing this stage of their education. Please reference the appropriate Degree Completion Timeline for additional details and items needed to complete a degree. The Graduate School at Michigan Technological University also maintains a series of frequently asked questions which answers many potential questions.
Preparing the Dissertation or Thesis
Download the Guide to Preparing a Dissertation, Thesis, or Report at Michigan Technological University to learn about the formatting requirements for these documents. Refer to the Graduate School’s formatting page to find document templates and additional formatting assistance. Students should consult with their advisor(s), committee, and graduate programs to determine program-specific requirements for their document.
If students are using copyrighted material created by themselves or others, consult section 5.3 of the Guide and the Graduate School’s copyright website or the Library's Guide for additional guidance.
Preparing for the Final Oral Examination ("defense")
Students should consult with their advisor(s), committee, and graduate program to determine program-specific requirements for their defense. Students should consult with their committee to determine an appropriate time and place for their defense.
Consult the Graduate School’s website to determine the deadlines for scheduling a defense, holding a defense, and submitting a final document for the desired graduation semester.
Scheduling a Defense
Two weeks prior to the defense, students must submit a scheduling request for their defense onMyMichiganTech [student tutorial] and submit their dissertation or thesis to Canvas. Students are responsible for distributing the document to the committee in the format requested by each committee member and reserving the location for the defense. Within six business days, the Graduate School will provide feedback on the document’s formatting.
After the Defense
Students must submit the Report on final oral examination form after the defense. This form reports the result of the defense to the Graduate School. The student should complete corrections required by their committee and formatting corrections required by the Graduate School.
Completing the Dissertation or Thesis
After all technical and formatting corrections are complete, students will submit their dissertation or thesis to Digital Commons and ProQuest by the deadline for the desired completion term. The Graduate School will request a review of the dissertation or thesis by the advisor on Digital Commons. Please note that this is a manual process that is completed during business hours. Their approval on Digital Commons replaces the former Approval of a dissertation, thesis, or report form. Their approval will indicate that the corrections have been made to the committee’s satisfaction and that the access and embargo requested for the submission are acceptable. The date a student submits a dissertation or thesis approved by the advisor will determine what semester the student completes their degree and whether or not additional fees or registration are required.
The Graduate School is no longer requiring bound copies. If desired, bound copies may be ordered through ProQuest or another bindery service.
The Graduate School will review advisor approved and complete submissions within six business days of completion and either approve the submission, or inform the student of any formatting corrections that are required. If formatting corrections are required, students will have until the Friday of Finals Week to complete them and remain eligible to complete their degree in the current semester.
Students who cannot meet the deadline for the current semester, but can submit during the grace period, are eligible to register for UN5951 in the upcoming semester and pay the resubmission fee to complete their degree in the next semester. The grace period ends at 4 p.m. on the Wednesday before classes start for the next semester.
Submissions are published on Digital Commons and ProQuest after all degrees are granted for the semester. Grace period submissions are published at the beginning of the semester, pending verification of all other degree requirements.
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