The field study, thesis, or dissertation topic must be selected by the student in consultation with the major professor and must be approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee prior to the beginning of the research process by the student. A student who has satisfied all academic course-related requirements with the exception of the field study, thesis, or dissertation must register for at least one to three semester hours of 5099 or 6099 during any semester/term in which an Application for Graduate Degree has been completed. Additionally, candidates who are participating in a directed study, clinical placement, internship, thesis, or dissertation activities are required to enroll for the appropriate course each semester until graduation.
The subject of the field study, thesis, or dissertation must be connected with the student’s major field. Credit on a student’s degree plan for the field study and thesis may not exceed six semester hours. The field study, thesis, or dissertation should be approved by the graduate advisory committee before credit can be given. A proposal of the thesis/dissertation must be conducted, and written notification of the successful proposal defense sent to the Dean of the Graduate School for the student’s records.
Upon a successful defense, the student must submit one pre-approval copy of the field study, thesis, or dissertation to the Graduate School no later than the deadline stated in the University Calendar. A pre-approval copy is the completed work of the student which has been formally reviewed and approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee. The pre-approval copy must include signatures of the graduate advisory committee. The pre-approval copy must be on 8.5”-x-11” photocopy paper and of appropriate print quality.
When the pre-approval copy is submitted, an initial review is done by the Graduate School. A manuscript reviewer will then complete an evaluation of the manuscript and the marked pre-approval copy will be returned to the student. At this time, the student will be given a deadline for making all changes and submitting the complete corrected original document, along with the required number of final approval copies accompanied by the appropriate number of original faculty signature title pages, to the Graduate School. These documents are to be printed on the correct quality paper as described in the ULM Guidelines for the Preparation of Field Studies, Theses & Dissertations. A review of the final approval copies will then be made.
The guidelines issued by the Graduate School, must be followed in writing a field study, thesis, or dissertation.
A minimum of four copies of the field study or thesis and five copies of the dissertation in final form, approved and signed by members of the graduate advisory committee, and one additional copy of the abstract must be submitted to the Graduate School by the deadline as stated in the University Calendar. All dissertations will be microfilmed by the University Microfilms, Inc., and the student will pay the microfilming fee of $65 which provides for microfilming of the complete dissertation and for publication of an abstract not to exceed 600 words.
A binding fee of $12 per volume for the required copies of the field study, thesis, or dissertation must be paid at La Capitol Federal Credit Union, located on Northeast Drive in University Commons II, with the receipt submitted to the Graduate School.
The original and one additional copy of the field study, thesis, or dissertation are placed in the library. The remaining copies are sent to the student’s major professor for distribution to the department and to the student.
After the initial defense is made, the committee shall discuss the defense and converse in closed session with the candidate for further discussion. An oral defense of the final thesis/dissertation must be conducted and announced through the Graduate School web site.
Thesis and dissertation defenses are to be held in an open forum. After the presentation, the student and the committee members will go into a closed hearing to confirm or decline the study approach. After the student has successfully defended their thesis or dissertation, the major professor must submit a memo on department letterhead indicating the successful defense. Documents should be in near publishable format at that point. It is suggested that the student work closely with the graduate committee and Graduate School.
Thesis Submission Guidelines
Year 1: Departmental Responsibilities
Preliminary thesis proposal and presentation deadline:
- Students must have their thesis topic in the form of a written proposal, annotated bibliography, and list of primary and secondary documents approved and signed by their major professor, graduate coordinator, and the department head by the 10th week of their second semester (or one year prior to intended graduation). For students who started in the fall, this will be the spring semester of the first year. This proposal will be placed in the student’s departmental file.
- Student must present to the committee an oral presentation of the proposal (departments are at liberty to have this presentation in an open or closed departmental format).
- Faculty major professor and thesis committee guide for the student in the thesis process. The major professor must assure proper procedures and style are followed by the student. Committee members are directed by the major professor and must ensure student compliance with best practices in writing style and content for their field of study.
Year 2: Departmental, Committee, and Student Responsibilities
Students must have their final formal thesis proposal approved and signed by the Graduate School by the end of the 10th week of the semester they are enrolled in thesis hours.
- Students must have a completed version submitted to their thesis advisors for revisions in the first week of the semester in which they plan to graduate. This will, ideally, be the student’s fourth semester (spring of the second year). The thesis should be a minimum of 70 pages with a suggested maximum of 125 pages.
- Students must have a revised version approved by their committee by week six (four weeks prior to Graduate School deadline) of the semester in which they intend to graduate. The thesis will then be distributed to the student’s entire committee.
- The thesis will then be resubmitted to the advisor for final approval.
- Oral defense and/or exams will be scheduled accordingly.
- Submission to the Graduate School will be the final task.
- The Graduate School will not provide readers for theses/dissertations. Please consult with your department chair for options in this area.
Major Professor and Thesis Committee Responsibilities
- Major professor and thesis committee members are responsible for revisions and guidance to the student. This ensures proper Graduate School format and writing style designated by the program are followed. The document submitted to the Graduate School will be signed as the final version and will be as close to a publishable format as possible. If not, the Graduate School will return the final version to the major professor and student for rewriting.
- If document is not acceptable by the Graduate School, the student’s graduation may be delayed additional semester(s) until the document is presented in a publishable format.
- The Graduate School will not provide readers for thesis/dissertations. Please consult with your department chair on options in this area.
The guidelines in this outline represent the latest possible for on-time graduation. Please keep in mind that the Graduate School requires a certain timetable for thesis completion. Earlier submissions will be accepted at the discretion of the student’s advisor.