5515.1 Policy

5515.1.1 Certain programs specify the satisfactory completion of a thesis as a requirement for the master's degree.  Doctoral programs require satisfactory completion of a dissertation.  Differing requirements for the doctoral dissertation are discussed in UP# 5720

5515.1.2 A student's thesis supervisor (chair of the thesis committee) must be a regular member of the graduate faculty.  Thesis committees should have a minimum of three members, all of whom must have regular or adjunct graduate faculty status.  Programs may require more members on the committee at their discretion.

5515.1.3 Students preparing a thesis should consult the Graduate Thesis/Dissertation Handbook available on the Graduate School’s web site.  The requirements outlined in that handbook and this policy are the basic minimal criteria for acceptance as approved by the Faculty Senate.  Students should seek the advice of their research supervisors and programs for further details.  Students are required to meet all standards as prescribed in the Graduate Thesis/Dissertation Handbook.  The Dean of the Graduate School, allows deviations from policy or style requirements only with prior approval.  Published articles or manuscripts resulting from the student's work may not be employed to supplant, in whole or in part, the thesis requirement.  The thesis must be written in English.

5515.1.4 The topic of the thesis should come from the student's personal exploration in his/her major or minor field.  The formal petition for approval of a topic must clearly set forth the problem, the intended organization, and the methods of development.  The student’s thesis supervisor and committee must approve the topic.

5515.1.5 Students should consult with the thesis committee as to the course (s) and number of credit hours for which they should register while working on an approved thesis topic.

5515.1.6 All thesis work will be graded using the standard grading system (A/B/C/etc.) or Pass/Unsatisfactory in each semester for which thesis credit is awarded.  These grades will factor into the student’s cumulative GPA as other grades do, and are subject to the same rules and standards.

5515.1.7 Students must successfully complete an oral examination of the thesis prior to submission of the thesis to the Graduate School.

5515.1.8 At a student's request, the Graduate School will make a format check of any thesis, or portion thereof, prior to final deposit.  This review will evaluate the format and style as established in the Graduate Thesis/Dissertation Handbook.  This review is intended to minimize the likelihood that a thesis will not meet minimum standards and require revision, which will delay deposit beyond the deadline.  However, it in no way guarantees the acceptability of the final copy.  To allow ample time for completing the deposit copy, students are advised to arrange for a format check well in advance of the deposit deadline.

5515.1.9 A computer file containing an approved thesis, in pdf format, must be transmitted to OhioLINK at delivered to the Graduate School for electronic transmission to OhioLINK not later than 30 days after the end of the term in which the degree will be granted (due dates are published by the Graduate School and distributed to the departments and program offices).  Instructions for submitting your thesis are on the OhioLINK Web site. OhioLINK is the repository for Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETDs) for the state universities system in Ohio.  This final copy should follow the form prescribed in the Graduate Thesis/Dissertation Handbook, available at the Graduate School Web site, and should be carefully produced, free of errors in style, mechanics, and format.

The pdf file must include the typed thesis approval page, but without signatures.  One (1) paper copy of the typed thesis approval page, with signatures, must be submitted to the Graduate School for filing.  The ETD cannot be approved until the Graduate School receives the paper copy of the signed thesis approval page.  Please consult the “Graduate Thesis and Dissertation Handbook” for additional information and details about preparing your ETD. Because some departments or programs require additional electronic or paper copies of theses, students should consult with their advisors to determine the number of such additional copies needed.

5515.1.10 The signature of the department chair on the approval page of the thesis verifies only that the student has successfully passed the oral defense and that the format is acceptable to the department.  The final copy must be approved and signed by the Dean of the Graduate School, before a degree will be granted.

5515.1.11 A student desiring to participate in any graduation ceremony must defend her or his thesis (5515.1.7) by the last day of Final Exam week of the semester (last day of classes in the case of Summer semester) in order for the student’s degree to be awarded in that semester and in order to participate in the graduation ceremony.   The department should notify the Graduate School, by memorandum prior to the graduation ceremony, of the scheduled defense date.