The Final Semester Before Graduation

In the semester when the thesis defense is to be completed, there are important application deadlines that must be met. Please refer to the Graduation Dates and Deadlines and the Thesis and Dissertation Formatting instructions for more information, both available from the Graduate School.

The student must submit an Application for Graduation in PAWS early in the semester in which graduation is anticipated. After reviewing the student’s records to determine eligibility, the Graduate School will forward the approved application to the Biological Sciences Graduate Program Director.

Oral Thesis Defense

The final thesis defense is a public presentation of thesis research, followed by an oral defense administered by the M.S. Advisory Committee. All other degree requirements must be satisfied before the defense. The date of the defense must be posted publicly one week prior to the defense. M.S. students are encouraged but not required to give a departmental seminar. The student must obtain the departmental Academic Progress of M.S. Students Form from the Biological Sciences Graduate Program office (the second half of the same form used for the Preliminary Examination). The form will be signed by the M.S. Advisory Committee upon the successful completion of the thesis defense.

The major professor must approve the thesis before it is presented to the rest of the M.S. Advisory Committee. Students should provide final thesis copies to all Committee members at least one (1) week in advance of the defense to allow sufficient time for review.

The Graduate School requires that all degree requirements be completed within five (5) years of the date of matriculation. Any student who exceeds this time limit can be recommended for academic dismissal from the Graduate Program.