Office of Graduate Studies


         Important Updates

  • Online Submission of Thesis and Dissertation Now Available. Submit your draft or final copy at: Click here
  • Learn how to set up your ProQuest account a Step-by-Step video tutorial:Click here


1. Setting up your Committee

  • Meet with your advisor and set up your Thesis or Dissertation Committee during your first semester. Creation of the committee will follow guidelines established by each department and/or college.
  • As you create your committee, complete the "Application for Thesis" or "Dissertation Committee Form" and submit the form to your advisor. It will be routed to the graduate office.

 2. Submitting your Draft

  • As you write your Thesis or Dissertation, refer to the Thesis and Dissertation Manual for formatting guidelines.
  • Submit the completed draft electronically as per instructions noted on the Electronic Submission Guide.
  • Here you will also have the option to select the number of copies to be bound for your personal use (The 2 copies that are required by the University will be a standing order to be kept in the Department and the Library).
  • Note: The graduate office does not check the content of your manuscript. Additionally, students are responsible for checking grammar and spelling for all names and titles.
  • A draft that is submitted for review should be complete except for minor formatting improvements and changes that will be made based on the committee’s recommendations. Therefore, a draft should include:
    1. All preliminary and supplementary pages
    2. Table of contents
    3. All chapter title pages and contents
    4. References
    5. Biographical sketch
  • The graduate office will review the formatting of your draft based on guidelines contained in the Graduate Thesis and Dissertation Manual (Revised 09/12/2013). You will be notified by email, when your draft is reviewed with recommendations for any edits that need to be made prior to final copy submission. Every effort will be made to complete thesis/dissertation review within 4-5 business days of submission.

 3. Submitting your Final Copy and Certification Form

  • Once the draft of your thesis or dissertation has been approved and after your defense, you will upload the final copy of your thesis/dissertation as per instructions posted on the ProQuest UMI thesis submission portal for online publishing. For helpful hints on submitting your copy, review the Electronic Submission Guide.
  • You must turn in the completed and signed “Certification of Completion of Thesis and Dissertation” form to the Graduate Office by the deadline posted for your graduation date.

4. Thesis Course

  • Once you reach the thesis or dissertation stage of the graduate program, you must continue to enroll in a thesis course during the Fall and Spring semesters until you complete the thesis or dissertation.
  • Students who are applying for graduation must have been enrolled in a dissertation/thesis course during the same semester they plan to graduate in order to qualify for graduation.
  • Students applying for summer graduation must be enrolled in the dissertation/thesis course during the summer session in which he or she intends to graduate.
  • The only alternative to continuous enrollment is a leave of absence (refer to the graduate catalog for more information).

5. Copyright Services

  • Per the Library of Congress Web site, “Copyright protection subsists from the time the work is created in fixed form. The copyright in the work of authorship immediately becomes the property of the author who created the work. Only the author or those deriving their rights through the author can rightfully claim copyright.” For more information go to:
  • Students can elect to have ProQuest/UMI to handle the application for registration of their claim to copyright their work by clicking on appropriate box while uploading the manuscript for final submission and pay the appropriate fee at that time or do it on their own through the U.S. Copyright office website at for a fee of $35.


6. Deadlines



  Fall 2014 November 7, 2014 December 9, 2014
  Spring 2015 April 3, 2015 May 12, 2015
  Summer I 2015 June 12, 2015 July 6, 2015
  Summer II 2015 July 10, 2015 August 11, 2015


  • Inclusion in the Commencement Ceremony Program
    • Students who would like to have the title of their Thesis or Dissertation included in the Commencement Program must submit their draft online by the deadline indicated above for submission of drafts and titles.
  • Extensions for Draft submission
    • Students who do not have their draft ready by the deadline must request an extension in writing to Donna Jackson,
    • No exceptions will be made to the deadline for the final submission of the thesis and dissertation.
  • Additional Requirements
    • Certain graduate programs may follow their own deadlines for thesis submission to the department for review – students are advised to consult with their program advisors for more information.


7. Costs

Students are required to publish their dissertation or thesis through Proquest. Required costs are: $50 for two university copies of the thesis or dissertation (for the library and the department). IMPORTANT UPDATE: As of September 27, 2010, the publishing service fees of $65 for dissertations or $55 for thesis will no longer be charged for manuscripts submitted online.

Additionally, students may purchase their own copies when submitting their thesis or dissertation; costs are available online and include a discount when ordering more than two copies.

Copyright service is optional and costs $55

8. Forms

Application for Thesis Committee

Application for Dissertation Committee

Graduate Thesis and Dissertation Manual – Revised 09/12/2013

Proquest Dissertation Publishing Agreement

Proquest Thesis Publishing Agreement

Certification of Completion of Thesis or Dissertation Form 

Change of Thesis/Dissertation Committee Form

Acrobat Reader is needed to open the files; you can get it free at Acrobat

9. Training Sessions

Workshop:         Thesis/Dissertation Formatting Workshop Part 1 

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014 

Location:         Academic Services Bldg. 2.164 & 2.160, Two sessions: 12-2 p.m. & 5-7 p.m. Register Now

Description:     Two sessions devoted to formatting your thesis/dissertation. An interactive workshop on Thesis/Dissertation process, ProQuest submission, and copyrights.

                       A must for any thesis/dissertation student.


Workshop:         Thesis/Dissertation Formatting Workshop Part 2 

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014 

Location:         Academic Services Bldg. 2.164 & 2.160, Two sessions: 12-2 p.m. & 5-7 p.m. Register Now

Description:     Two sessions devoted to formatting your thesis/dissertation. An interactive workshop on Thesis/Dissertation process, ProQuest submission, and copyrights.

                        A must for any thesis/dissertation student.

10. Contact Information


Thesis/Dissertation Submission

If you have questions related to the submission of your Thesis or Dissertation draft or final copy on Proquest, contact: Donna Jackson, Donna oversees the submission of all drafts, notifies students of any corrections that need to be made, and sends the final approved copy to Proquest.

Thesis/Dissertation Assistance

If you need assistance with the formatting or uploading of your thesis or dissertation, you may also contact Tony Reyna at (956)665-2656 or to make an appointment.

Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, at the Office of Graduate Studies (MASS building, Room 1.158)



11. Frequently Asked Questions

Submission and Technical Support

How can I submit a multi-part file?
Combine all the sections together as one PDF file and submit that. To make one PDF file from multiple files, open the first PDF file, then choose Document> Insert Pages from Acrobat’s menus to insert the second file (indicate it should go after the last page of the first file), and repeat for all documents. The result will be one combined PDF file which may then be submitted.

How do I change the format of the page numbers for different sections in my Microsoft Word document?
Your manuscript must be submitted as one file. So, create different formats of page numbers or to restart page numbering in the document you’ll need to divide your document into “sections”, and then change the page number format for each section. (Note: That specific step will vary for different versions of Microsoft Word.)
NOTE***In order to prevent you difficulties in the future when submitting your final draft, it is highly recommended for you to create different files: A document with only the roman numerals, another separate document with regular numbers, and another separate document which is going to be the copyright page. By doing this, at the very end when converting them to PDF files (Adobe Acrobat), the process will be much easier and less time consuming for you. Thus, during the final steps of the process all you will have to do is insert all pages (from multiple files) and combine them into one {Refer to PDF Questions}. Click here for detailed instructions

How do I add a portrait page number to a landscape page in Microsoft Word?
From Microsoft Word’s Knowledge Base: If a page of your document is formatted with landscape orientation, the header and the footer of the page are also formatted with landscape orientation. There is an article provided on the following link that describes how to use rotated text in a text box or table to add a page number in portrait orientation to the header or footer layer of a landscape-oriented page.

PDF Files

Do I have to do anything differently when writing my manuscript?
You simply write your document as you normally would in your word processor, keeping a few tips in mind to improve the quality of the PDF document:

  • Spacing and pagination: Use tabs instead of a series of spaces to align text. Insert page breaks instead of a series of paragraphs to start a new page. Use section breaks to change the format between pages in the document. Use your word processor’s tools for creating table of contents and cross references to ensure that pagination is consistent even if the generation of the PDF file causes the pages to shift slightly.
  • Fonts: According to the Thesis/Dissertation Manual the Time New Roman font is to be used.
  • Graphics: It’s best to use EPS (Encapsulated PostScript) files rather than bitmaps, GIFs, or JPEG images. Use a high resolution such as 6000-dpi.Avoid using graphic editors that are part of a word processor.
  • Equations: Microsoft Word users should NOT use Microsoft Word’s Equation Editor. Instead, use italic Times Roman font and Symbol font, along with superscripts and subscripts to create equations.

What settings should I choose when creating the PDF file?
Though each version of the PDF creation software will differ slightly in how you create the file, you should always choose the following options:

  • Embed all fonts (VERY IMPORTANT!)
  • Print optimized
  • Minimum of 600 dpi resolution
  • Do not encrypt the file. Encrypted PDF files will not be accepted. The text cannot be extracted from them for full text indexing or storage.

Other important tips for creating the best PDF files:

  • If you are using Adobe products, use Acrobat Distiller to create the highest quality PDF files. Do not use Adobe Acrobat Writer to create the files (Distiller comes with the full version of Adobe Acrobat).
  • Create the PDF file on the same machine where the original document was created to ensure that the fonts necessary for viewing and printing the resulting PDF file are available during PDF creation. If you create the file on a different computer, please examine the final PDF file to verify that the correct fonts were used throughout the document. Note: These instructions do not apply when using the PDF conversion tool-Found in the ETD Site.

What does “embed all fonts” mean?
When fonts are embedded, readers of your work will be able to see your document as you intended, with the same fonts that you used. If you do not embed all your fonts, and those fonts are not available on the reader’s computer, Adobe Acrobat will make its best guess at what font it should use as a substitute. This can result in significant differences between your original document and what the reader sees (particularly with symbol fonts).

How do I embed my fonts?
These instructions differ depending on what you are using. Click here for detailed instructions

How do I create PDF files from Microsoft Word Documents?
Creating a PDF file from a word processing document is fairly straightforward. Once you have installed the software necessary to write PDF files (For EX: Adobe Acrobat Distiller), you can essentially print to a PDF file instead of printing to paper.

If you are using Adobe Acrobat Distiller and Microsoft Word, the best way to go about creating the PDF file is:

  • From the Microsoft Word File menu choose Print.
  • Select Distiller (or “Crate Adobe PDF”) as the printer by choosing it from the “Name” (or “Printer”) drop down list at the top of the print dialog.
  • Choose “Print Optimized” as the job option.
  • Click OK (or “Save”) to create the PDF file. You will be prompted to name the file choose where it is saved. Do so, and click Save. (If you’re not prompted to choose the name and location, make note of where the file is being saved as indicate in the Print Dialog.)

What if my manuscript is made up of multiple files?
If your submission consists of multiple documents (such as word processing file, graphics, spreadsheets, etc.). It is best to consolidate them first in one document and then print that file as a PDF document. If you aren’t able to consolidate the files before creating the PDF file, it is possible to combine PDF files using the commands in Adobe Acrobat.

  • Open the main PDF file in Adobe Acrobat.
  • Go to the page where you want to insert the additional pages or pages.
  • Choose “Insert Pages” from the Document menu.
  • Select and open the PDF file that contains the pages to be inserted.
  • Verify the settings in the dialog to be sure that you’re inserting the pages in the correct location, and click OK.

How do I do the uploading of my Thesis/Dissertation?
Goto: File - Save As - Word document - Tools - Save Options - Embeded Fonts (click on it-a check mark should appear) - Save - Save As - PDF Conversion tools - File to convert - Convert File (from thumb drive) - PDF (click on the word) - Browse - Save and Continue