Theses & Dissertations

A thesis is required under Plan I for the degrees of Master of Arts, Master of Education, Master of Fine Arts, Master of Food and Nutrition, Master of Public Administration, Master of Science, and Master of Science in Criminal Justice or Master of Technology Management. A thesis may be required for the degree of Master of Music, depending on the field.

The thesis topic should arise out of the student’s personal exploration in the field of study. The formal petition for approval of the thesis topic must clearly set forth the problem, the intended organization, and the methods of development of the thesis.  After approval by the student's committee and graduate coordinator, the thesis topic must be filed with the student’s department and the petition of topic approval submitted to the Graduate College.

A preliminary draft of the completed thesis (defined as a manuscript that answers the stated problem) should be submitted to the thesis committee by the time a student files the application for graduation. The final draft of the thesis (defined as the thesis manuscript with content embodying all corrections requested by the committee) should be submitted to the thesis committee sufficiently prior to the date set for the final examination to allow for a rigorous and careful reading of the manuscript by the committee.

Doctoral students must submit a request for dissertation topic approval to the Graduate College on the Thesis/Dissertation Topic Approval form. Approval of the topic by the Graduate College admits the student to doctoral candidacy. To be eligible for candidacy, the student must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher, have completed any foreign language requirements, where required, and have passed the preliminary examinations.

The results of the final examination (e.g., dissertation defense) for the doctoral degree must be received in the Graduate College by the published deadlines each semester.  The Graduate College expects that the official University copy of the submitted manuscript will be error-free and ready for publication on OhioLINK.  Students who upload manuscripts that are not error-free are in danger of a delayed graduation date.  

The Graduate Council approved the implementation of electronic submission of theses and dissertations beginning with Fall 2005 for all graduate programs. With the exception of theses written in the MFA program in Creative Writing, paper copies are no longer  accepted by the Graduate College.

This web site contains a resource for master's and doctoral students who are preparing electronic theses and dissertations for submission to the BGSU Graduate College and OhioLINK ETD database.

What is an ETD?

An ETD is an electronic version of your thesis or dissertation.  It has figures, tables, footnotes, and references. It has a title page with the author's name, the official name of the university, the degree sought, and the names of the committee members. It documents the author's years of academic commitment. It describes why the work was done, how the research relates to previous work as recorded in the literature, the research methods used, the results, and the interpretation and discussion of the results, and a summary with conclusions. To see the ETDs from contributing Ohio institutions, visit the OhioLINK ETD database.

The ETDs are a public display of the quality of work acceptable to the student's department and to the University for meeting graduate degree requirements. It is the responsibility of the student's thesis or dissertation committee to judge the acceptability of the thesis/dissertation from all standpoints, including writing quality, neatness, mechanical considerations, and technical and professional competency. Committee members attest to acceptability when they sign the ETD Approval Form. Therefore, it is important that they be provided with a view of the thesis or dissertation before the student's defense.

Graduate students must utilize the traditional format for theses and dissertations established in the Thesis/Dissertation Handbook (T/D Handbook).